Experience India

We were lucky to start our trip with an Indian friend in Bangalore ( the IT capital of India). He brought us to some non-tourist places, we would have never ever reached without him. For my surprise there is a flourishing rock and underground culture in Bangalore and just stunning Indian rock bands. But more about this upon personal request. :) Here are some hints and stories, that would help you with your travel to the amazing India.

The Muslim conquest of India began in the XII century. For centuries India was ruled by maharadjas of Muslim dynasties, although the population professes mainly Hinduism. From this point in time the social status of the Indian women began to worsen.

The first restrictions were for senior women who belonged to the royal family. Then the practice of public veiling and limiting the role of women in society was gradually rising, despite the fact that the majority of the population was Hindu and Buddhist.

The royal palace courtyard. Although veiled  the women of the harem were not allowed at the yard, to secure they would not be seen by a guest of the palace. They were observing the world through the small facets.

Freshly washed saris drying on the facade of a "clean" building.

Every year pilgrims of Lord Shiva undertake a holy pilgrimage from their homelands to the banks of the Gang river, to take a holly water and bring it home. The travel must be made only on barefoot and can take up to several thousands kilometers.

Varanasi is the city of the living dead. Thousands of old people from all over India come here without their families to wait their death and be burned in the Holy City. They sleep on the streets or in cloisters. The city has over 20 gates at the Ganges banks. On them sacred cremations are performed day and night. And, no, it is not smelling, at all. The place is so special and full of energy, that the last thing that will come to your senses is a smell.  More than 250 cubic meters of wood are needed for the complete combustion of the corpse. This makes it about USD 3000 for the cheapest wood and up to USD 30 000 for sandalwood. People often save money for their cremation all live long.  In India it is common big corporations donate to crematoriums, as part of their social responsibility programs. That wood is intended to be used for the poorest who cannot afford their own cremation.

Female relatives of the dead are not allowed to attend the cremation, because are considered too emotional and can offend the soul during its passing into the afterlife. The processions are composed only of silent man. We got this information from inherited cremator, when going with him to the balefires and observing the whole process. His family is doing cremations since generations and now owns one of the biggest crematoriums in Varanassi. Nor he, nor the balefires are filmed by us. To our question, whether the people take photos at this place he replayed: “Some things are superior to the human's curiosity. It’s up to you”.

Every night Ganges Central gate a sacred ceremony is held. It is led by five monks, mostly from Tibet. They come for few months in the city and then change.

Holy cows in Varanassi
Curious cow at Jaipur's city market

Indian cows live like the European homeless dogs. They eat from the rubbish on the street and inhabit several streets. They start their daily tour from one part of the street and in the evening you can find them on the other.

Many friends asked me how people recognize their cows and prevent them from being stolen. Well, since the cows do not eat grass, they barely find food for their own self sustain and do not really produce milk. So, people are not interested in stealing your cow, because she won't provide any benefits.

One morning when traveling to catch in inner flight I was amazed to see that at 6.a.m. the streets of New Delhi are washed with water every morning by the government and the city is clean and smells on freshness! Then I realized that the only reason for so much dirt is peoples attitude. After the government has cleaned the street in front of your own house or shop, the merchants throw their daily wаstе directly at their shops or in front of them and to not make any effort to keep it clean, because they know that tomorrow someone will clean for them. There are plenty for garbage tanks, but this is the attitude towards them.

The kids of India
Well, every kids around the world are sweet and cute, but there are some characteristics that apply for the Indian kids, making then one of the most colurful and charming kids I've ever seen!
Most of them are very curious about the world, about you and want to communicate, even when not knowing english. Most of the kids are dying to be photographed, even though they will never ever see the picture. All of them were shy to come and ask, but ones you smiled to them and show a positive attitude a crowd of happy faces is coming to you!
After checking on of the must-see tourist sights, the Jaipur red castle, we entered some random temple to watch some monks and boys from the neighbourhood playing cricket. Unfortunately we ruined the game, because the boys came to us, some of them having brilliant english to ask us a bunch of questions, play with us, touch us, show me how to play cricket and have photos. They were so curious about our big Canon camera, that we gave it to them and show them how to make pictures. Ofcourse it was a bit fight, who of the 7-8 kids to picture, but the good thing is that in the end the camera survived.
It was the end of our trip, so we are out of gifts to give (we carried a bunch of them for the kids). So we gave some money to the boys to buy chocolate for themselves. They got back with just little chocolate and gave us all the rest of the money back. When they realized they haven't bought chocolate for us, they cut their shares to give to us. After refusing to take the chocolate from their hands (hygienic reasons) they didn't accepted my no, because it would have been unfair. We got some fun fight and I ended up having the chocholate stuffed into my mouth. This one of the best and funniest chocolates I've had!
We've got pictured by the boys
Indian prince, playing it cool, pretending not seeing me ;-)
5 sec later the prince is checking what's going on, thinking I do not see him :D
Proud boy, who asked us to picture him, at his work place on the street, where he repair shoes.
Reshmi is living in a small, remote village near the Pyramid Valley in Bengaluru. For living her family is growing silkworms. None of them was speaking english, however they were very interested to see foreigners in their village and directly took our hands and lead us to their house to show us spots where the silkworms are grown. The family grows blueberries and feed the worms everyday. When grown they are sold to the local factory.

1 comment:

изгодни пожарогасители said...

Страхотни снимки! Най-много ми харесаха онези снимки с момчето с червената риза ! Хехе! Иначе Индия си е наистина невероятна страна, силно се надявам някой ден да имам възможността да отида там..