.All Trips / Asia / India

Ox-Drawn Water Wheel, Rajasthan

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While traveling across rural Rajasthan, en route from Jaipur to Udaipur, our guide stopped the bus beside a farm.  The point of the stop was for us to see how a water wheel is still used in agriculture.  There was a large metallic mechanism beside the road apparently connected to a water wheel; after a chat with the farmer, a pair of oxen were attached to the steel bar and we were shown how the water wheel worked.

This type of water wheel is called a sakia, or Persian wheel (although it likely was invented in India around 300 BC).  The device is designed to lift water from a well using buckets or scoops connected to an endless belt activated by …

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.All Trips / Asia / India

The Beautiful Lodi Garden, Delhi

50a Lodhi Gardens, Athpula. Delhi 02-2016

In a crowded, congested city of 17 million, green spaces are very important and much appreciated by the residents.  The lovely Lodi Garden in New Delhi, India, offers lots of free space for people to enjoy.  Here you have a chance to walk, jog, do yoga, have a picnic and play.  We arrived fairly early on a drizzly morning and the park was almost deserted.  Of course a little rain never stopped me from exploring.   The drizzle dried up within an hour and then the crowds started to arrive.  But not before I got to see a nearly empty park with lovely palm-tree lined walks.  My first impressions lingered — this was to be one of my favorite destinations …

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.All Trips / Asia / Food / India

A visit to Delhi’s Subyard-Okhla Market

37 Subyard-Okhla Market, Delhi

Most of the inhabitants of our planet have very different shopping patterns from those living in the developed countries.  They do not buy their groceries at Safeway, Costco or Tesco, but at local markets in their neighborhoods.  Sometimes these markets have a series of small shops but often they are open air markets like the one I recently visited in Delhi.

There are dozens of vendors at some of the larger food markets in India, most with a unique product or small series of products (for example, the “onion and garlic” or “apple and orange” vendor, and so on).   Sometimes you’ll find four or five vendors side-by-side selling exactly the same fruit or vegetable for exactly the same price.  How does …

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.All Trips / Asia / India

The Colors of India

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Before my visit I’d never formed a mental picture of India as being a particularly colorful place, although I’m sure it has natural areas in the mountains and along the coast that are lovely.  Natural beauty was not my experience when traveling around northern India in February.  I found the areas near Delhi and Rajasthan to be exceedingly dirty, dusty and gray-brown.  The plants were coated in dirt, parched and most had lost their leaves, the monsoon still months away.  It would be interesting to see the region again after cleansing and rejuvenating summer rains, but I have no desire to visit when India’s temperatures are around 50 C and the humidity approaches 100%.  (Note:  The weather in February was absolutely …

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“Pic of the Week”, March 18, 2016: The Lotus Temple, South Delhi

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One of the great new landmarks in Delhi is the Lotus Temple, built during 1980-1986 at a cost 10 million rupee.  The Temple is shaped like the lotus flower, its 27 petals made of concrete cores clad in a layer of white marble.  The marble is surprisingly not of Indian origin (the beautiful Taj Mahal is constructed of beautiful white Indian marble), but rather from Mt. Penteli in Greece.  The architect was an Iranian-Canadian, Fariborz Sahba, and the building has won numerous architectural awards.

The temple is set amidst pools and gardens.  It was built by the Bahai faith and is the only Bahai Temple in Asia.  This Temple is open to people of all faiths, and has no idols of any …

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