Friday, June 26, 2015

Andhra Pradesh memories..........

The massive Godavari, the second largest river of India after the Ganges. The river originating from Nashik, Maharashtra flows through Andhra Pradesh to join the Bay of Bengal. This picture was captured from the moving Coromandel Express, on my way to a conference in Vijayawada. It was a foggy, chilly morning of Late December. Notwithstanding the harsh conditions, these daring fishermen are engaged in fishing for their livelihood.

These miles and miles of palm groves dotting the Costal plains of Andhra Pradesh stood parallel to the route of train, I was traveling. As I leaned against the door to absorb the fertile, lush landscape view, these magnificent palmyra palms (Borassus flabellifer) seemed to be racing with the train. Their abundance in thousands furnished testimony to their special place in the daily life of the local inhabitants.

These charred date palms in coastal Andhra Pradesh have been struck by lightning. The strength of the strokes can be well imagined from this dismal picture of four burnt palms in a  row. Recently, I learned that the study of lightning is called fulminology.


A buffalo chomping on the grass, while a pair of cattle egret and a common myna scanning its hairy torso and limbs for any hidden ticks, for a sumptuous lunch. This heart-warming picture depicting commensalism was snapped two years ago in a small town Guntur..I had been to that city all the way from the North-Eastern city Guwahati, to attend a conference in Acharya Nagarjuna University.

Few years ago, I had visited Hyderabad, for a conference...
This trip had offered me with some opportunity to see some landmarks of this city..

Ramoji film city.....

Replica of Eiffel tower..

Hussain sagar lake....

The Buddha statue.....

Unfortunately, I don't remember this historical structure...

Barren land, so characteristic of the city...

People@North East India.......

A daily market in Guwahati city. It's an ideal place to purchase freshly harvested veggies from the vendors, unlike the cold storage preserved, stale stuffs. Added advantage is that if you are good at bargaining, you can lower the price. Though haggling is not my cup of tea, its a visual treat for me to roam in the market and enjoy the refreshing veggie piles.

A poor woman selling roasted maize in Pan Bazaar, a bustling market in the heart of Guwahati city to earn a living. It fills my heart with tenderness to see the woman struggling to burn the charcoals on the iron tray, inhaling the copious carbon monoxide fumes. I always make it a point to buy one or two of these delicious, salt, chilli powder and lemon juice smeared corns wrapped in a paper. Occasionally, a packet of freshly packed popcorn too. On cloudy, rainy, wintry evenings, these sweet-smelling roasted corn on the cobs were the most desired snacks for me.

A street seller in a bustling street of Kolkata displaying his array knick-knak merchandise. Though the well-heeled lot are not expected to show any interest for these cheap, fake ornaments, the poor people are enticed.

Punjab memories.........

Punjab soil is very fertile with high agricultural productivity due to the alluvial plains and extensive irrigation facilities. 
Sutlej river...

A glimpse at this dark, nutrient rich, well-ploughed fields and you can gauge why it yields bumper crops.
It is a field in Phagwara, near the historic Grand Trunk Road..

I used to work in  a popular University there...and often visited these fields..it was harvest time in late October...

The corns were growing...

Mustards had started to bloom, but not in their peak yet...

It was peak harvest season. The farmers were busy cutting  and threshing the crops. They were kind enough to allow us to sit on the bales, pose on the tractors and hold the crops. Though we had our own field in the village and i had seen the whole process of seeds being sown to harvested, year after year, staying away almost a decade for higher study had blurred the memories. It was refreshing to relive the past.

The farmers were busy threshing the paddy crop...


The sugarcane were ready for harvesting..the farmer was kind enough to allow us cut few stems and relish..


Enjoying the fruit of labour...

Puppet show..once, it used to be a popular form of entertainment...now its on the verge of extinction....
I saw this art while visiting Haveli in Jalandhar...the iconic food and culture haven..

I had got this opportunity to visit Amritsar, the historical border city...........
Here, at the world famous shrine Golden Temple.......

The Gurudwara....




Then I visited Jaliwanawala Bagh...the massacre site of  congregated freedom fighters..
The well, where many victims had jumped in order to escape the firing still stands there..
The building walls are perforated with bullets... 

Met these kids from near-by school...

Lovely Professional University...where I started my job life..as an Assistant Professor.. having a Popsicle on my way back from duty....

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Heartwarming pictures...

Well, these are some of the heart-warming pictures I captured during my India visit last year..
One of our calf playing with my nephew..

My husband feeding the calf with lentil crepes..

Now, here the two kids are gelling well, unlike the first one..

Again , husband is feeding the stray dogs with leftover flat breads..

Fauna at Assam state zoo......

An one-horned rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis)  in Assam State Zoo. These  pachyderm mammals are vulnerable to extinction, so protected in several National Parks and sanctuaries in India.  I have been lucky to see these fifth largest mammals in the wild, in Kaziranga National Park, where more than a thousand of them live. These creatures, though look scary are harmless if not provoked. This picture is evidence enough to prove the point.
The colossal ungulate is happily sharing space with two monkeys and giving a ride to the crow...



Visit to Kaziranga National Park...

I was browsing through my albums and the Kaziranga trip folder revived the happy memories. We had been to the national park on a late Decemeber day to watch the world-renowned one-horned rhinoceros.
After spending the night in a wood cabin  in the forest, we woke up early morning for the elephant ride. It was my first mount on a jumbo and I was ecstatic. I had ball of a time with the colossal  yet docile pachyderms. Reminiscing the sweet moments ......

Elephant drinking from the poodle before reporting to duty....

Another baby jumbo....how vulnerable..to hell with those humans who dare to harm these gentle giants.

Caravan ready with saddle and mahout....

Breastfeeding the baby before going to work.....

The young tusker kneels down for the rider to mount him...

Off they go with the entourage...for spotting rhinos...

We mounted the jumbos, who too us through the grassy meadow, for a closer view of the rhinoceros, wild buffalos and pigs...

Rhinoceros roaming and grazing in the vast park.........


I feel the park should receive more funds and draw more visitors...it will be good for the species inhabiting it and great for the mind and soul of the visitors..

Animals@India....

Stray dogs roaming the streets as freely as humans may be an alien concept in the USA, but it is the norm in India. We are so used to see stray dogs in every towns and villages ...
This pack of  street dogs, I saw in an alley in Rourkela are heading somewhere, may be to a feast with chances of lots of left overs dumped out.

This dog and her two puppies live near my sister's place...Here, my spouse is feeding them with some leftover flatbreads...sometimes they cause nuisance though, ruin the garden lawn or steal clothes and shoes...

This herd of goats is on their way to browse on the woodland  pasture not far. This is an early morning scenery of a remote village in Sundargarh district. Such cute things always make me happy; I feel still all is well with the world.

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