Ah the refreshing cool of the mountains. Not really though because it is still hot. I don't think I'll ever complain about North Carolina heat again. We have arrived in Rishikesh located in the lower Himalayas. After a long 12 hour train ride and a 6 hour bus ride it is nice to finally be settled down. The town is located on the banks of the Ganges river. After looking at this river for five days in Varanasi it is nice to finally be able to swim in it. With long hot days there is nothing like jumping in the ice cold river. Also around is plenty of hiking and rafting opportunities. This morning we visited the Beatles Ashram, where they lived for several months and wrote a couple of albums. The place is now completely abandoned and the jungle is slowly taking the place back over. It is still a cool place to visit and imagine what the place was like 50 years ago.
Being in India really does make you appreciate the comforts of home. It is also amazing how much religion plays a role in the daily lives of Indians. All over the cities are shrines and temples dedicated to the various gods and goddesses, for Hinduism. We have also visited the Jains, who's main leaders do not believe in clothes. We have also visited a Buddhist monastery, but will soon be immersed in that culture.
There are many stories that are too long to post on this blog but will be told later on. Though the trip is starting to wind down, there are still several cities to visit and plenty of fun to be had.