Dera Mandawa, Jaipur, Rajasthan
Durga Singh, the owner of the charming boutique Haveli hotel Dera Mandawa in Jaipur, isn’t happy. He’s convinced that his twin beds aren’t as comfortable as his doubles so he wants me to do a bed test.
This is how I find myself throwing myself down upon double beds, one after another. Ten times. Each time I take a deep sigh, letting the air escape from my chest with a long ahhhhh as the bed bounces gently and then comes to rest. A few minutes in silence as I adjust my head on the pillow while the mattress reaches up and matches the curves of my body so that each and every muscle can relax. He’s right. His beds are marvelous. I feel as if I’m being held.
Being held is one of the most important feelings that a person can receive. It gives you a deep sense of inner well being. When arms go around your body, or you rest your head upon a shoulder, you feel supported. Within minutes you feel as if everything is all right. You don’t need words. Your muscles relax and the weight of the world slides off your shoulders so that you suddenly feel lighter, more buoyant. The world isn’t such a heavy place.
Hugging, or holding each other, is essential. It comes from being held by a mother’s arms. However you don’t need a mother to do this. If you are ever in need of reassurance, or you wake up in the middle of the night by your cassette of perenial worries, try wrapping your arms around yourself and rocking yourself, just as a mother would rock a baby. The feeling of relief will be palpable. Your past doesn’t have to affect how you are today. Give yourself what you are needing, now. Self mastery comes moment by moment, and, while bouncing upon Durga’s beds, I’m having one of them.
The firm foamy feathery weightlessness of Durga’s beds is so exquisite all I want to do is lie there and feel supported while my eyes dance over the hundreds of millions of details that he and his wife have lovingly placed in each room to make his hotel unique.
They are not only artists with exquisite taste, but his beds are without a doubt the most comfortable I have felt in India. Most of all, it’s the support that I will remember most, and will take with me.