11/21/2010 Day 6, On the Road to Agra
Today, we started by gathering our belongings and checked out of the hotel in preparation for our trip to Agra. After driving about two hours, we stopped at a roadside establishment to stretch our legs. This was, of course, an opportunity to buy more souvenirs at their gift shop. It was crowded with tourists from all over the world.
After another hour or so, we arrived at a beautiful bird sanctuary with a delightful restaurant nestled among the trees. We ate a delicious meal and then resumed our ride on the bus to Fatelpur Sikri, a spacious red sandstone city built in the 16th century by the Mughal Emperor, Akbar. This area was still quite beautiful. We imagined how it must have looked centuries ago when the walls were still decorated with gold paint, the carpets were still draping the floors, and servants were adorned with colorful fabrics to wait on the royal family.
We finally arrived in Agra to check into the hotel and dress for our farewell dinner. This is our last night as tomorrow night we leave for home. Tomorrow, however, is a special day as we will great the dawning of the day at the Taj Mahal and then visit Agra Fort.
It has been a very hectic 8 days but very productive and beneficial to all. Many of us are looking forward to our return to India in the very near future.
Cirecie West-Olatunji, Associate Professor, Mental Health Track Coordinator Counselor Education at the University of Florida and ACA Governing Council Representatitve, is leading a People to People Disaster Mental Health Delegation to India. She will be sending us regular updates during her trip.