After our visit to the Taj Mahal, we encountered our first snag in our plans: a 4.5 hour train delay in Agra at 6 in the morning. It was a nice enough station to spend the time, watching the groups of monkeys come and go as well as dogs, cattle, etc. About halfway through the delay, a school group on a field trip to the Taj Mahal came by to get our autographs. They were very friendly and enjoyed trying out their English greetings as well as shaking our hands. The teachers explained that they rarely see Americans in their neck of the woods, so it was a nice treat for them. We offered them some American coinage to look at and take back to their classrooms. There were also a few other train passengers who wanted to say hello to us, and we had interesting conversations with them. One man asked about the 2008 election, and his awareness of world affairs was impressive to me. How many Americans would be able to engage in a conversations about the Indian political system?
Our accommodations on the train were in a sleeper car (air conditioned), so I took a nap while Jon got some reading done. The berths were not in compartments, but there were curtains to provide some privacy. Stations aren't announced, so you kind of have to pay attention to the time to ensure you don't miss your stop! With our train running behind schedule, it somehow managed to make up 45 minutes in transit. Jon and I were a little surprised when our stop arrived!
We arrived in Jaipur just in time for most of the tourist attractions to be closed, so we went straight to our hotel to relax. Our hotel this time was a former palace with very pleasant grounds and a nice restaurant. We spent a little time just relaxing, very much enjoying the peaceful setting.
At night, we took a walk to the local cinema (a major hotspot) and watched half a film. Although it was not in English, it was a Disney film, so the plot didn't seem too complicated. Jon and I compared interpretations afterwards. Jaipur felt much more western to me with a main drag filled with shops and restaurants, but we didn't venture too far into the old city.