Monday, October 24, 2005

Delhi Continued . . .

Jama MasjidThe Jama Masjid is the largest muslim mosque in India and was built buy the emperor Shah Jahan during his reign in the 17th century.

Here we are in the photos above atop of one of the towers in the mosque which overlooked a portion of the surrounding town. The view, we thought, was quite impressive.

Delhi MuseumWe weren't supposed to take pictures of anything while at the museum, but . . . well . . . it didn't make much sense to travel half way around the world in the name of research and NOT capture some much needed images. Above we see a sword, some daggers, and a battle axe. Below an elephant in full war gear, circa 1600 or so.
(Below) Only a day or two into our trip, Ted and I had already travelled quite extensively. Here we begin what I believe was our second (of many) major train trips to yet another distant land.

(Above) I had to include this shot in the collective. I really like the turbined gentleman in the back ground.

On The Train . . .
(Above) This was my first real bout with sickness while in India. I had ran something like six or seven miles during the early morning - only four and a half of which were intentional; the rest occurred as I got (yet again) lost amongst the conjested streets of Dehli. After the rather exhausting early morning run, Ted and I began our usual walking through the forts, museums, and temples of the city. This tended to take the better part of the day, and, at times, added something like another five plus miles to my daily trek. All this on top of the fact that my body was still very, very much in shock from the stress, conjestion, and pollution of the country itself, put a tax on my system that I am still quite a bit shocked I did not get really sick from. All the same though, one can only take so much, and at the point when this picture was taken, I was having shivers and body aches pretty badly.(Above) I thought the composition of this photo that Ted took of one of the passengers sitting across from us to be very sound. The contrasting play of light and dark, as well as the bluriness of the passing trees, seems very effective.

To KalanarNot long at all after finishing our long train ride, we boarded a taxi and took it for another few hours to a very remote area of northern India called Kalanar. A small monument was constructed there to commemorate the sight where the emperor Akbar was unofficially crowed by his general, Bairam Khan, and we felt it appropriate to pay a visit. It was actually quite a pleasant drive, as there were long stretches of green fields and the air was clean and crisp. Here our driver does a bit of on-the-spot refueling.

Cows, Cows, Cows
What depiction of India would be complete without taking a few pictures of some cows? There was a cow or two in the immediate periphery of the small temple which made for an interesting mixture of scenery, so I decided to practice a little more on "dirtying up" my framing.
(Above) I had a slight, silent communication of sorts with this cow. It was a nice, serene moment, and I thought it appropriate to take a photo of her.
(Above) another bovine enjoys a nice, cooling bath.

Golden Temple (Amristsar)
On our way back from the long trip to Kalanar, we decided to make a small, detoured stop at the holy pilgrimage site of the great Sikh religion.
Okay, although I know this picture above is neither golden NOR the Golden Temple itself, it 1) was of a beautiful building situated just to the side of the temple itself, and 2) I wanted to have a shot of it on here nontheless . . . Look at the sky. It doesn't even look like a photograph. It looks like it was painted on there by some 16th century master or something . . .
The Sikh religion is one whose mythology is very rich in war and fighting, and much reverance is given to acts of bravery during battle. All the same, however, the temple was one of the absolute most relaxing, and inviting ones (if not THE most) that we visited while in India. It was very, very hot outside, yet the temple's layout and marble floors - as well as its being constructed surrounded by this very cooling lake - made the short time we spent there quite positive and memorable.
Here (above) Ted decides to take a dip in the Sikh lake. Although there were various individuals themselves bathing in the lake - mothers, children, and males of all ages - and although we were in respectful observance of the Sikh customs during our time there, Ted was still initially hesitant about going in. Again, however, we found that there was a general aire of acceptance and tolerance . . . so Ted decided to go ahead and cool off for a moment.
(Above) . . . beautiful Golden Temple. I was indeed very happy and appreciative of being here. I was glad we visited.

Back Again

With no time to waste, we, again, arrived at the train station ready for our next destination. We were tired, beat from the long trips, and, as mentioned earlier, I was still quite a bit achy. All the same, however, I had made a commited to continue my disciplines (physical and otherwise) while in the country, and it didn't matter that I didn't always have a convenient place to work out at. Matter of fact, rare was the ocassion when my workouts were not significantly encumbered by some very real obstructions. Wherever I was, however, when it was time to get the work done, I had to commence. Above and below, Ted took some photos of me at something like three or four in the morning after I had just finished running something like 4 1/2 miles around the train station itself (no. I didn't get lost this time) and then began next on some upper body disciplines. The natives were quite interested in the goings on, and a small crowd of onlookers began to form as I worked out.


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