Exposures

Fancy Versus Real

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Text by Patty Simon

Pushkar, India

We were excited to go to the Pushkar Camel Fair. We were staying in a tent camp but was curious about the quality. Well, my wish for fancy flipped.
We arrive at a beautiful camp in a fruit orchard, decorated in the Martha Stewart goes Indian style. The arrival was welcoming and gracious. You could tell it was very fancy. But as we check in and they don’t find our name we knew we were at the wrong camp. The poor kid that was our baggage handler had to slog our bags through the desert sand back to the car. He got a big tip! Now where?
We arrive at a much simpler destination. A few painted walls, a few plants in the dining room, and the setting was on agricultural land growing spinach. The tent was good enough and did have hot water.
So the lesson is – “Don’t judge a book by its cover!”
By the second night, we were dancing hand in hand with the local dance troupe. I had one of my best vegetarian meals of all the trip. The staff was warm and friendly but not overdone looking for tips. It felt like home.
I will take real over fancy anytime!

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