Rainy morning. No electricity. This is one of the complaints of the Kashmiris I’ve talked to – their massive water resources are dammed for hydroelectric generation and the majority of power is shipped out of the region.

I was trying to post pics of our hotel, but bandwidth is too low this morning. So you get a text update from my phone Our hotel is in the central square – away from the tourist part of town and where most of the action has happened when the conflict here was hot. When we tell people where we are staying here we usually get a “really??”.

Mornings here are entertainingly noisy – grumbling trucks, shouting merchants, horns, dogs. The square and most of the town is filled with army and police, who watch the cacophony in silence, but will occasionally return a smile and have given us directions when we asked Across the street is the bombed out shell of an old theatre – trees growing up thru the center.

Staying in previously war or conflict ridden countries is def entertaining – given the right mindset. But Kashmir is also a major tourist destination completely with mostly Indian tourists. We haven’t felt in danger at all. People here are incredibly friendly and desperately seeking business from tourists. This place needs income and the people are wanting to meet and talk with westerners. It is a crazy, beautiful place.