Within the temple area there is Sikh museum which explains Sikhism from the very first martyr to the latest victims of the India/PAkistan war as well as the massacre of Amritsar inApril 13th 1919. This was quite depressing for not only do the graphically show in paintings of all the tortures the Moguls put th e foundling farther through but also the photographs of the recent massacred Sikhs before their burial. Hard hitting stuff.
We continue our walk around the temple but we were not allowed in, but given special priveldge to see the living incarnation of god as the book of prayers. This book is even put to bed in the evening, and I mean put in its own bed in a separate room inside the temple. The devotion of the followers is humbled to see.
We left the Golden Temple and went out for another Indian banquet for lunch.
After lunch we were met by one of Colin’s manufacturing friends who has governmental status and a priveldged governmental car. The reason being we had been privedlged to receive front row tickets to witness the Ceremony closing of gate between Pakistan and India.
However before we left we stopped off in a public park, and when Colin was doing deals, the girls and I went for a walk. We were approached by some students who first of all wanted to get to know us and another group of photograph students that wanted to take some photos of Zoe and Alison. See the end results.
Following our friendly encounter we headed to the border. The government car had a special electronic horn which used generously to clear the traffic. The border being some 40km form Amritsar gave us the opportunity to see real countryside and the challenges of food production without mechanical implements. As we neared the border we had a slight problem as Colin Halcomb the guest name had been transposed to Halcomb Colin. This took 3 ranks of officers to sort. Colin further challenged the guards when he tried to bring in vaping pipe, which has probably never been seen by the guards.
We were escorted through cordons and shown to our seats right on the front room reserved for governmental officials. What a priveldge. We witnessed what could only be a Bollywood style of closing the gates with the massive numbers of Indians singing their pride in the country to upset the lower numbers of Pakistanies on the other side of the border.
The Indians then invited all the women to dance up to border showing what fun and pride they have being in India. We witnessed a poor Pakistani family crossing the border with all their worldly goods as well as children, best described as having very little, being brusquely dispatched across the border with no assistance.
Once the border area was cleared the security guards undertook symbolic strutting and gesturing to each of the guards to the Pakistanis gaurds. There was one particular move they used a lot was a high leg kick above the head. This pageant went on for approximately 30 minutes building up into a xenophobic national display of pride, signing, dancing and professing the greatness of India. A strange but wonderful spectacle. On our return to the car Alison and Zoe took pleasure from photo bombing the families having their lifetime photographs at the border.
On our return we nearly killed a cow which across the central reservation from behind a tree and as it stuck its head out, I really thought this was going to be it for the cow and for us killing a sacred animal. However our driver swung the vehicle to left,( as they drive most of the time on the left hand side) missing the cow but nearly putting a family of four on the moped into the ditch.!!!! You cannot ever relax when driving along these roads and tracks.
Anyhow made it back to the safety of our hotel and air conditioning.