As mentioned in Etawah post 1, we had planned to leave the morning after arriving in Etawah but the town had more in mind for us.
After the ring ceremony we hopped a bike taxi which transferred us to rickshaw to make our way to temple. When we arrived we could see the many vendors selling flowers and foods as part of the Navratri celebration. We walked down the dirt road with a group of very curious children smiling and practicing their English “ha low”
When we reached the temple we removed our shoes, worried to leave them behind the guards assured us they would be ok. Difficult to believe, we walked in bidding farewell to them.
The color, beauty, people, sounds of bells and celebration surrounded us- and from that a guru emerged to say hello and to join him for a walk through the temple.
At the first stop we bowed to the goddesses and our foreheads were smudged with orange in honor. Later we honored other Hindu gods while the guru encouraged us to enjoy and take pictures. We are still reading about this wonderful celebration, there is good information here.
As we rounded the corner he offered us chai, a favorite!, and this have us more time to sit together. The Guru’s apprentices laid out a blanket for us to sit on and we sat together to share coconut, fruit and biscuits while we sipped the chai. Many people came to say hello.
After our time together we have a humble donation to the temple and rang the bells. We exited the temple and rang another bell as we said goodbye. There are many reasons to ring the bell, because it produces an auspicous sound and the sound of “om.” To ensure prayers are heard, or to show presence. All of these feel appropriate for what we experienced here.
Our shoes were safe and sound and our rickshaw driver was kindly waiting to walk back down the dirt road with us. The blessings here are rich and plenty.