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Diary entry by Gertrude Bell

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Bell, Gertrude Margaret Lowthian
Creation Date
Extent and medium
1 entry, paper
Chirol, Valentine

20.593684, 78.96288

Sun. 18. [18 January 1903] Off at 7.30 to see the foals fed. A delicious crisp morning. They keep them near the tomb of Fetb[?] Jung of whom no one knows anything and use the tomb as a storehouse for grain and oats. We saw first the foals all eating ........ grain out of troughs, quite tame and not minding being handled at all. Then the mules for the transport - Col. F. [Fagan] says they have quite broken down the prejudice against mules - then some camels and lastly the two year olds. These were summoned by a bugle call and came galoping [sic] from the open country - they have ever so far to wander in - jumping bushes and ditches, a cloud of dust behind them. The trainers and breeders are all natives and the Imp. Ser. cavalry of Alwar is beter mounted than any other. On the way home passed the Raja's private railway station erected at enormous expense of red stone brought from Gwalior, and got out to see the polo grounds, the pride of the State, inches thick in manure and soft and springy like English turf though brown. It takes armies of men to weed and water them. Home for breakfast after which we went to the station, Domnul with us. Train 1/2 an hour late. Enchanting station crowd - I photographed some begging holy men with begging bowls, staves, bare legs and shoulders clad in flesh coloured cotton wraps. One had a roll of cord round the top of his bowl, a cheerful small pock marked man, looking as if the begging life suited him. Got to Rewari at 12 and lunched. Delhi at 2.45. Drove up to Maiden's hotel and got our luggage and Muni and exchanged politenesses with the Hanmers. Sibyl has gone to Bombay and home. Delhi half dismantled domes of triumphal arches laying about, auctions going on (they say the things have gone for more than they were worth) and tents and furniture piled up. The station full of horses and carriages. Got off our dear narrow gauge into enormous carriages. Off at 5. There was a boring man at the station at Alwar who wd interrupt my peaceful photography by introducing "a cousin of His Highness the Maharaja of Tonk" a fat, rather cross Oriental in a frock coat and white socks. Finally he said to me: "Are you simple tourists, or may I put you down as business men?"

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