December 14. Okara – Amritsar (Hindustan, Bharat, India, HOME!)

[31°37´25.4”, 074°52´44.1”]

Km today: 181

When I wake up at 9 the escort is already ready to go. I quickly get ready too and half an hour later we leave. One of my new police friends changes some money for me so I take some petrol (cheaper in Pakistan than in india!) and on we go. 150km to the border pass like nothing even though there is a traffic jam in Lahore. Pakistani side of the border is done pretty quickly even though they check all the numbers of the car – I am happy they accept that color is nothing important and smiling they write “colorful” in their documents and ignore the “grey” in the carnet de passage.

When I pass the gate to india I have to stop everything to take some pictures of suryananda at Wagah border. When I am exactly at the gate I step out of the car to make a few steps back taking a picture. The guard smiles but says “Sir it is not allowed to go back to Pakistan once you are in india”. I apologize and go back to india again. No problem. As soon as I cross the border all the people greet me saying HariOm because of my jyoti (the little longer hair on the backhead). I enjoy! Custom control invites me for chai and take a look inside (I am happy I cleaned yesterday) suryananda. They like my hindi and I enjoy hearing it again. Slowly I understand more and more of what they say to me – if they speak slowly enough. Because of the chatting it takes nearly an hour on the Indian side to pass the border. They ask me about my job and I tell them Yoga teacher and ecologists being prepared to explain that fact. They smile and say this combination fits very well…. I am at home!

I leave the border and arrive in Amritsar some time before sunset. The road to the hotel where I stayed in spring is blocked for cars so I take the closest guarded car park and walk there. Even though my room is free I am not really ready to pay this price. Not expensive for a room with this view but I know the view and I don’t really want to take my stuff out of suryananda to carry it up 5 floors and down again on the next day. Sunset is over anyway and as the sun set behind the golden temple when being in the room the most spectacular moment is done anyway. I sleep in suryananda. The next hours I spend walking around in town, going to hindu temple (finally), internet and getting some food. I see some dog puppies on the street and there was not much missing to make me be the owner of a dog again. They are supercute!

I go back to suryananda and decide to leave to Pushkar as soon as possible tomorrow morning. I want to update the blog in the morning and check google maps for the best way there. After chalo!