While we were in Jaipur we made a trip out to Galtaji temple which is known for its large monkey population. Ever since Daegan and I told her about our own trip there, Sage had wanted to go. At one point before we left I asked Sage what she wanted to do in India. “I mostly just want to experience daily life. I don’t need to go see tourist sites.” but then she corrected herself almost immediately. “Oh, except for the monkey temple!”
And so we ask my friend Shahid to take us there. On the way he passes a fruit seller on the street and stops his tuk tuk about 50 feet away from him. “Let me go buy bananas, he’ll charge you too much.” he says and then runs off to pick them up. He returns a minute or so later with four big bunches of bananas.
We ride out of Jaipur and in to the mountains, arriving in a small village. Ahead there is a herd of about 20 cows in the middle of the road. We weave slowly through them, dodging them carefully before stopping next to a man with a large pile of greens.
“Do you want to feed the cows? It’s very good karma.” Shahid says. And so we go over to the pile of greens, give a few rupees to the seller and take several big handfuls. The cows notice us immediately and en masse come to meet us, taking the greens from our hands, jostling each other and us to be sure they get their share. It becomes such a crush that Shahid says we need to go, it might be dangerous, and back in to his tuk tuk we go.
A few minutes away from the temple we stop again. Here we see several monkeys and 2-3 cows all standing by the side of the road.
“Let’s go feed the monkeys now,” Shahid says. And we get out.
The monkeys are thrilled to see us and come by to grab bananas from our hands. And it is then I learn that not only do monkeys like bananas, cows love them as well. And soon the cows are competing with the monkeys for handouts. We give out one bunch of bananas before heading in to the temple area itself.
This was one of my favourite trips in India because Sage had such a good time. You can hear about her experience in her words and photos here.
Inspired by this week’s Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Fences and Gates.