Saturday, October 28, 2006


Well, we are in Jodhpur now in a resort at the moment. This city is getting closer to Pakistan. For this reason there is quite an abundance of military training centers, medical centers and even military schools. Jodhpur is the blue city, which got its color due to the prominance of the Brahman caste.

To explain this further:

Most societies are divided in layers that have different social status. This division can be established in a number of ways (how many women you have, how many camels, job, etc.). In most western societies this division is done by wealth. Here in India, it is actually done by religion and has not much to do with power, nor wealth. This is an interesting point. The blue city is blue because the city that used to house so many people of the Brahman caste live here. They paint their houses blue. This caste consists of priests and is the highest layer in society. You can recognize people from every caste by their last name, which is an indication where they come from. I was told that even up to now, some people follow this distinction. I asked around and found out that the last name "Sharma" is associated with this caste, allegedly.

If you go one level below, you get to the warrior caste. The associated color is red. One of the most common names in this caste is "Singh". Certain maharaja families are also called Singh, like the family in Jodhpur. One level below is the caste of merchants, it is associated with the color yellow or white. The final level below there is the level of nomads, street sweepers and toilet cleaners. Its associated color is black and there is no city constructed with this color.
Speaking of the cities, you would then see: Jodhpur -> Blue, Jaipur -> Red / Pink, Udaipur -> White / Yellow.

The picture with this post is taken from the top of the Jodhpur fort. It shows the part of the city where the priests live. Unfortunately I had to take this picture against the sun, so it is not very clear.

Inside the fort you can still see the rooms intact with some of its inventory. This is an example of the room of mirrors. There is also a room that is now used for dancing, a room that was used by the parliament (in the time when the maharaja still ruled as a king, at the moment he has more like an exemplary role, like the king / queen in the UK / Holland), and finally the bedroom.

Well, Jodhpur is not very rich when it comes to tourist highlights, but it is a lot cleaner than many of the other cities you will find. The only other interesting highlight is the belltower in the middle where the market is located.

The lack of many tourist attractions may explain that you will not find pre-pared clothes, the silk or cotton is normally chosen and then the tailer does the clothes and can bring it to the hotel at night. As a final example, we asked to see some turbans and he wanted to show how turbans are put on the head. Unfortunately his winding skills were not that good, so it was a bit of a weird head-cake.

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