Wednesday, December 12, 2007

20 November 2007 - Gaya/Bodhgaya

Good ole Gaya. A 30 seater bus picked the 14 of us and we were soon on our way to Bodhgaya. Lai, Linda and I were excited as we passed familiar sites. Soon we were at our hotel - Buddha International Hotel. A word of advice to fellow travellers- do not stay there. The toilets do not work, the doors creaked and your breakfast takes hours before you see it on the table.

Lai went with Deepak to the hotel we stayed over in 2006 but the rates were doubled from INR1,400 to INR2,800 so it was out of our budget. After breakfast we went to Mahaboddhi Temple. While the group were at the temple, Deepak, Lai and I went to check on Mahayana Guesthouse and we were so lucky to be able to secure 8 rooms. Originally they were fully booked. We moved out of Buddha International the very next day.

Mahaboddhi Temple was packed. It coincided with Kathina. Sangha and lay people from all sects gathered to do offering.

In previous years evenings were spent indoors at the hotel but this time round we visited the temple grounds. It was really enchanting.

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