“Pic of the Week”, February 26, 2021: A Parade in Jojawar

04 Parade

Our entry into the city of Jojawar was delayed by a traffic jam.  When we got out of our vehicle to see the reason why, we encountered this parade on the city’s main street.
I never did find out what the reason for this gathering was — perhaps a Jain celebration?  But the colors, music, chanting and enthusiasm of the celebration were engaging and evident. 
Within 10 minutes it was over and we resumed our journey to our hotel.   But I did gain an appreciation for how people in India love to celebrate.
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“Pic of the Week”, January 29, 2021: The Masala Chai Men’s Club, Jojawar

00 Masala Chai

While rambling around the city of Jojawar, we came across this group of older men.  They were gathered in the shade of an overhang, shoes off, sitting on towels and blankets, smoking and enjoying good conversation and some masala chai.
As is typical of the more remote regions of Rajasthan, the men almost uniformly wore turbans.
A street vendor near them was cooking up masala chai, a treat our tour group had grown to enjoy.  We watched him go through the process of preparing our chai — a mixture of boiled milk, water and spiced tea.   He kept constantly stirring the mixture until it was ready.
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Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah, Agra

04 Tomb of Itimad Ud Paulah

The Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah (hereafter called TID), also know as the “Baby Taj”, is overshadowed in popularity by some of Agra’s other tourist attractions, namely the incomparable Taj Mahal (25 mins away) and Red Fort (14 minutes away).   Yet TID is a beautiful marble structure that’s worth a visit, especially at dusk or dawn as the soft light highlights its beautiful architectural details.
TID is on the eastern banks of River Yamuna and was built by Nur Jahan, wife of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir and step-mother of Sha Jahan (who was to become the builder of the Taj Mahal).  Nur Jahan built the tomb for her father, Mirzā Ghiyās Beg,  a Persian amir in exile who had been given the …

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A Wedding in Jaipur

01 A Wedding in Jaipur (2)

If there’s anything more colorful than a wedding in India, I’m not sure what that would be.  It’s uncommon for a group of tourists to be invited to a wedding celebration; this unique opportunity arose because our tour guide was a good friend of the groom, hence the invite.
Indian weddings are still mostly arranged affairs, the parents picking appropriate mates for their children.  I personally believe that marriage for love is better, but the Indians are happy with their system and it seems to fairly work well for them.  Marriages in India are as stable as those anywhere in the world.
We arrived at the rented venue, part of a total of about 250 people ultimately attending.  We were invited to …

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“Pic of the Week”, October 23, 2020. Audience Hall, Red Fort, Delhi

00 Hall of Audience, Delhi

The Diwan-i-Aam, or Audience Hall, is located in Delhi’s Red Fort.  It was here that Mughal emperor Shah Jahan (best known for building the Taj Mahal) and his successors meet with citizens to hear their grievances and requests.
The Audience Hall is covered with a roof but is open on three sides, with a back wall and weight-bearing pillars and arches made of red sandstone.  The hall measures 100 x 60 feet.  Apparently at one time its ceiling and columns were painted with gold — that would have been quite a sight.
It’s an impressive and beautifully constructed space, highlighted by place where the Emperor would sit —  a magnificent elevated white marble throne inlaid with semi-precious stone (a technique later perfected in …

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Visiting a Boy’s Home in Delhi

00 SBT SHELTER WALK

One of our tour group’s activities while in Delhi was to visit a Home for Boys, which we did early one winter morning.   The air was cool and crisp as we stepped off our bus and most of us zipped up our jackets.  We were met by one of the older boys from the home.  He greeted us and gave a brief history of the home before guiding us through the streets to visit it.   While I think the purpose of the walk was largely to let us see what life on these streets could be like, it would be impossible for any vehicle larger than a tuk-tuk to have navigated the maze we entered.
The Salaam Baalak

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A Day at Humayun’s Tomb, Delhi

17 Humayun’s Tomb (54)

The building of Mughal Emperor Humayun’s tomb was actually undertaken in 1565 by his Persian-born widow, Hamida Banu Begum, nine years after the great man died.  She selected the site of the monument, on the banks of the Yamuna River, and the Persian architect who designed it.  The monument took seven years to build and shows a strong Persian influence, including it’s gardens divided into four parts by walkways or flowing water.  It was the first garden-tomb in India.

The massive mausoleum is constructed of red sandstone interspersed with white marble, while the inner tomb itself is made of marble. The platform of the mausoleum is 7 meters tall, while the height of the building’s impressive marble dome is 47 meters.  …

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Some Doors from Jojawar, India

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Jojawar is a fairly small community in the Rajasthan region of India.  We spent several days here and I really enjoyed this part of our trip.  It’s a more traditional community than many of the others we visited, with, for example many men in Jojawar having beards and wearing turbins — something you don’t see much of in India’s bigger cities anymore. 

 As I was sorting through my images from this community it became clear that there were many interesting doors in this small community, which is the theme of today’s blog.

I hope to share more stories from Jojawar with you in the future. 

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