Golgappa seller in Rishikesh

Pani poori seller
Pani poori seller

Pani puri seller in Lakshman Chowk, Rishikesh, Uttarkhand

Historical Structure in Ruins

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Reflections on the ruins of Poosimalai kuppam Palace
Reflections on the ruins of Poosimalai kuppam Palace

Poosimalaikuappam Palace in Arni was built as a guest house by the Jagirdhar in 1860 CE. To keep up with the British, he added 4 fireplaces and chimneys even though the place is always hot. It was one of the early structures to use steel girders. CI pipes serve the dual purpose of pillars and drains. It is believed that the Jagirdhar built it for his British wife. It was used as a hunting lodge. Locals refer to it as Glass Palace. Today, it is in ruins and wears a ghostly look with graffiti on the walls by vandals.

Devoted Devotee

86-year old regular at Sonna Vannam Seidha Perumal
Born and brought up in Kanchi this 86 – year old is a regular at Yadothkari Perumal Temple

This man was born and brought up in  Kanchipuram. He spent his entire life in this temple town. Now at 86, he still prays at the Yadothkari Perumal Temple, also known as Thiruvekka temple or Sonna Vannam Seidha Perumal.

This temple is one of the 108 Divya Desams. It was built in the 8th Century CE by the Pallavas. It is one of the three oldest temples in this region; the temples of Pandava Doothar Perumal and Ulagalantha Perumal being the other two. There are later contributions from the Cholas and the Vijayanagar kings.

The deity is unique in that Perumal is lying with his left hand supporting his head instead of the right hand as in most other places, including Srirangam.

Cap Malheureux – Cape of Bad Luck

Cap Malheureux - Cape of Bad Luck
Cap Malheureux – Cape of Bad Luck

You have heard about Cape of Good Hope. What about Cape of Bad Luck? I hadn’t heard about it till I visited Mauritius.

Cap Malheureux or Cape of Bad Luck is the Northernmost point in the Indian Ocean island country of Mauritius.

It is a very picturesque waterfront and definitely worth a visit. There is also a quaint little red-tiled church of Notre Dame.

In a battle in 1815, the French lost the battle and the island to the British. Hence the name.

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Notre-Dame Auxiliatrice de Cap Malheureux

Roads of Mauritius


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Panning shot at Trou aux Biches, Mauritius
Panning shot at Trou aux Biches, Mauritius

The roads in Mauritius, except a couple, are narrow but well maintained. The traffic is well disciplined and follows the rules and conventions meticulously.

There were only a handful of traffic lights. Most major junctions had traffic roundabout where the right of way convention was observed scrupulously.

Yes, they drive on the left side of the road, like India, England, Kenya etc.  One could see many brands of cars on the road – mostly Japanese and European. Toyota had a big presence. Other brands like Nissan, Honda, Hyundai, Suzuki were also visible,

God’s Own Country

God;s Own CountryGod's Own Country
God’s Own Country

Where else can it be other than Kerala!

Though the backwaters of Kumarakom and Alleppey are very famous, one can find an equally picturesque location in many other parts of Kerala.

This resort, Aquasserenne, is on the Paravur lake in Kollam district.

Nikon D40X, Nikkor 18-55 @ 18 mm, f/11, 1/80 ISO 100 (on tripod?) November 2011.

Royal Feast

Dining are of resort cum restaurant between Aurangabad and Khuldabad
Dining area of resort cum restaurant between Aurangabad and Khuldabad

Khuldabad is where the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb was buried in a modest tomb. Khuldabad is also famous for the Bhadra Maruti temple. It also houses the tombs of the first three Nizams and a handful of Muslim saints. The town is only a few kilometers from Ellora and can be covered in the same trip from Aurangabad.

On the way back to Aurangabad, we stopped over at a resort with a Rajasthani theme for lunch.

Temple on Film

Pachaimalai temple
Pachaimalai temple

The Mahayuga Kali hilltop temple on Pachaimalai, a hillock near Tambaram Sanatorium. One has to climb 150 steps to reach this shrine.  The view is worth the effort. The temple had just received the first coat of white paint and it presented an ethereal sight against the morning sky.

Shot in Nikon D7000 Tamron lens 18-200 at 56 mm 1/320 sec f/5.0

Lightroom Old School Film B&W preset.

 

Trinket Seller

Trinket seller - waiting for custom.
Trinket seller – waiting for custom.

Temple towns and pilgrim centres provide livelihood opportunities for many.

This old woman was selling rosaries, pendants and a wide variety of bead necklaces on the road to Hari ki Pauri at Haridwar, Uttarakhand, India