McLeod Ganj

after a 200km drive from amritsar we left the foggy and smoggy flatland of punjab and entered the mountain-area of himachal-pradesh-state.

 

Near Dharamsala there's McLeod Ganj (altidude 1700 m), the exile of the tibetan government and exile-home of the dalai-lama.

 

The air feels like a relief for our lungs. Mc Leod Ganj is full with travellers and people more or lesse interested in the tibetan cause (Volunteers and Hippies)

 

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on the way to the mountains we stopped at a kind of buffalo-fair.

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we and our bikes, a nicely composed picture ;)
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the same (now with helmets, due to the increased amount of "action" going on in this picture)

we were the most safely adjusted motorbike-drivers we saw along our whole trip.
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on the national highway, sometimes you have to give way to trucks or busses coming towards you at full speed.
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sometimes the roads are totally gone for a few hundred meters (but continue perfectly paved afterwards)

this specially happens before and after bridges and fly-overs which are still (since years ?) in construction and you have to drive around them in the dirt.
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monkeys are found along the roadside of many mountain-streets.
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The sign says "Brigde damaged, only light vehicles are allowed to cross."
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Milestones like this are your constant, reliable friend on even the smallest roads in india.

(you have to memorize the next town-names in hindi-writing, as sometimes the words are written in hindi only)
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"at the mechanics" #2

when arriving in mcleod ganj i had a tire-puncture.

a guy from israel helped and called his friend at "Ray's Garage"

The mechanics came with a vespa and a spare-wheel, replaced my whole back-wheel within seconds with their own and escorted me to their workshop where they fixed the broken tube. The whole procedure took about 20minutes and costed about 3 EUR.

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a kind of "public water router" in mcleod-ganj
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obviously: a buddhist temple
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the only picture with tibetan monks, as we did not want to take pictures of them too offendingly
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nice request ;)
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power supply with live-wires in an arms-distance
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This "we offer everything" (but nothing tastes right) Mentality is often found in the more touristy places in india.

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every little space is used for living or business.
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Zeljko managed to get his warm shawl in the bazaar of McLeod Ganj.
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dogs again. ("children and animals", the most essential elements in TV and Blogs ;)
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The view across our guesthouse to the mountains (>4.000m) above Dharamsala.
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again, mountains
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keep the prayer-mills going
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In the post-office:

You have to glue your stamps with a brush and a jar of glue. (no tongue-licking-stamps available)
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Post-Box in McLeod Ganj, looks a bit like a litter-box

but they rarely have any litter-boxes in india anyway, you have to get used to throw your trash on the floor (its best to drop your trash in front of a business, where they might have someone to clean the area every morning - but maybe just to move the trash a few meters round the next corner )

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Just like Trash, Cows are also everywhere in India, this picture shows both.

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Stereotype for tourists in McLeod Ganj
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tasty road-side food. Food is often cooked along the street, but most of the time you see only men preparing the food, women are mostly hidden from the public.
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"at the mechanics" #3

now also zeljko got his tire-puncture when leaving McLeod Ganj, the same mechanic fixed his tire in the same way as mine 48hours ago.
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this is the mechanic's dog, checking the tires after successfull fixing
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