Qutab Minar – Delhi

May 24, 2014

An oasis of serenity, tranquility and beauty in the midst of the eternal hassle, noise and chaos that is Delhi.

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The impressive architecture, the intricate designs and carved works on the structure walls and pillars….all are quite amazing

I visited here last October with my friends, and this is also a great time of year to tour Delhi as the weather is quite pleasant.

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No matter where you stand in the compound, you can feel the power and energy radiating from this impressive architectural feat.

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Qutab Minar is a soaring, 73 m-high tower of victory, built in 1193 by Qutab-ud-din Aibak immediately after the defeat of Delhi’s last Hindu kingdom. The tower has five distinct storeys, each marked by a projecting balcony and tapers from a 15 m diameter at the base to just 2.5 m at the top. The first three storeys are made of red sandstone; the fourth and fifth storeys are of marble and sandstone. At the foot of the tower is the Quwwat-ul-Islam Mosque, the first mosque to be built in India.

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An inscription over its eastern gate provocatively informs that it was built with material obtained from demolishing ’27 Hindu temples’. A 7 m-high iron pillar stands in the courtyard of the mosque. It is said that if you can encircle it with your hands while standing with your back to it your wish will be fulfilled.

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DSC04256note the jet….quite amazing to see this structure still standing after all these years
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All in all it was an lovely day with my good friends, Preeti and Sudeep Lal (they can be seen in the photos below…waiting on line, and in the shadow of the impressive arch

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If you are in Delhi, this is definitely a must see!

DSC04237Namaste

Jane

 


Delhi Oct. 2013 #2

March 20, 2014

Masjid Fatehpuri at Dusk

Just some photos.  It was so beautiful….no words are necessary here I think!

Masjid Fatehpuri

Masjid Fatehpuri
Masjid Fatehpuri
Masjid Fatehpuri
Masjid Fatehpuri
Masjid Fatehpuri
Masjid Fatehpuri

Namaste

Jane


Delhi-October 2013 – #1

March 20, 2014

Chandni Chowk and Spice Market

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As promised, I will begin posting stories and photos (mainly) from my recent sojourn in India.  I found blogging to be a true intrusion this trip and did very little posting while actually there.  So I will now begin trying to catch up, for myself as well as for my followers.

Spice Market

Spice Market

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I blessed this year with an amazing first time adventure of experiencing, and exploring Delhi with local friends, rather than as a tourist, and it was a whole new experience for me.  I will begin this post with my first days in Delhi.
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I explored places I’ve never beendto before, travelled on the Metro for the first time, saw some of the new wonderfully modern areas of Delhi as well as the traditional markets and local antiquity sites.  I hope you will enjoy the next few posts which will hopefully tell this story, mainly in photos.

Spice Market

Spice Market

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Here are photos from a day spent roaming Chandni Chowk Shuk and the Spice Market, mostly on foot, but with the help of bicycle rickshaw as well. It was a very long but very beautiful day.

Spice Market

Spice Market

Spice Market

Spice Market

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Lunchtime in Chandni Chowk

Lunchtime in Chandni Chowk

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Signs of a Splendid Past

Signs of a Splendid Past

Red Fort on a Very Hazy Day

Red Fort on a Very Hazy Day

view from Jama Masjid

view from Jama Masjid

Namaste

Jane


A Cow Story in Photos

February 26, 2014

This will be a story in photos of one particular cow, on one particular day, in one particular place, ….
cow at ram jhula

But first, just a few words in general about cows and India.

Cows are everywhere in India.  It would not be India without cows. Cows roam the streets, walk on main highways, pop in to have lunch in restaurants, stroll through open shops, take naps in the middle of the street…there is no place where you will not find the cows.  The amount of photos of cows I have is exceeded only by the amount of photos of monkeys that I have!  🙂

Some cows seem mean

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another mean cow

Some are regal

11-regal bull

Some are motherly and loving

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Some are just an integral part of the scenery

part of the scenery

But this cow seemed to enjoy the energies along the Ganga, and to enjoy interacting with those who had come for prayer and devotion, or just for fun, along the ghats of Ram Jhula.

At first, she came straight up to me to say “Hi”….

1-checking me out

Hi There… Namaste

She seemed to be most curious, and quite intelligent.

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…and then headed down the steps to check out the other people and see what they were doing.

6-checking out people

7-checking out people

What’s This Guy Doing?

At one point she seemed to be posing for photos along with the tourists

8-take my photo too

Take My Picture Too Please

9-nice lady

Or asking to be included in someone’s devotional prayers.

10-say a prayer for me too

Say a Prayer for Me Too Please

In short….an interesting cow day….

There always seems to be something happening wherever you happen to find yourself.  The trick is to be mindful, to be grateful and to appreciate and enjoy everything to the fullest.

Namaste

Jane


RETREAT MODE-NOV 20 2013

November 20, 2013

Retreat Mode-Nov 20 2013
I’ve been finding it a definite challenge to get back to my daily postings…it’s not that I have nothing to write about, or share…there are always wonderful stories to tell while in India and insights to share…
But at this point, I feel I need to be in “retreat mode” to fully benefit from my time here at the moment.  So what I WOULD like to do is share some of my favorite photos from time to time…they may come with narrative or story line, or may just be posted as is as the mood strikes me.
I will begin today with some of the photos from the past three weeks, in no particular order, and hope you enjoy.
those in this post are just to give you a small taste of the Chandi Chowk Market streets, and the Spice Market in Old Delhi

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Namaste
with love light and JOY
Jane


Favorite Shots of Magical Rishikesh

August 15, 2013
Tapovan Village scenes

Tapovan Village scenes

I’ve been away a long time and feel the energies of Rishikesh calling me back each day.  Won’t be back for a couple of months, but would like to share some of my all time favorite shots of Rishikesh with you for the time being.  Hope you enjoy!  Check out the full gallery at the end for more photos.

colorful terrace view

village scenes18

village scenes7

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view down towards laxman jhula

reading morning news

sun setting2

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ram jhula14

 

new ganga views (1)

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devotion on the ganga2

home from the forest2

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colorful Saturday Tourists On the Way Down to the Ganga3

baba with bike

life along the ganga (2)

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happy babas

head load 2

crossing Ram Jhula-Neelkanth Temple in Distance

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Family Dipping Together

selling bread to feed the fish

local tourists2

just enjoying the view2

ram  jhula sunset3 good

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Namaste…see you soon in India!!!   Enjoy the full gallery below for lots more shots….sooooooooooo hard to choose from the hundreds that I have!  🙂

Jane


Beautiful Last Evening (and day) in India – Nov 21-22 2012

December 1, 2012

Beautiful Last Evening (and day) in India – Nov 21-22 2012

Last Morning in Rishikesh-Clouds Over the Mountains

Last Morning in Rishikesh-Clouds Over the Mountains

I was invited to Dr. Arora and Manju’s for dinner together with my friend Michal.  I usually spend quite a lot of time visiting with Manju while I am in Rishikesh.  Daytime visits where we just chat and I watch her in the kitchen-best cooking lessons available-and these visits were missing during this short stay.  But at least I would get to spend the evening with her, and I was excited about going.

We wound up spending the evening in prayers, chanting and singing with all the female members of the communal family dwelling (5 sisters-in-law, a couple of THEIR daughters-in-law, a visiting sister of Dr. Arora from Delhi, and even one baby granddaughter).  I couldn’t have found a more suitable, uplifting and beautiful way to spend my last evening in Rishikesh, or better company.  I have no photos, as it seemed neither appropriate nor necessary at the time, but the wonderful pictures will remain in my mind for a very long time.

It seems over 30 years ago, Dr. Arora’s father decided that every Tuesday there should be an evening of Kirtan (sacred chanting) in the family temple situated in the center of the family dwelling, and the women at the time decided they would be the ones to do it.  And to this day, this is precisely what happens every Tuesday evening.

There is nothing that compares with the power, and empowering energies of the prayers of women.  The chanting was done joyfully, sometimes playfully, sometimes with deep serious mindfulness and devotion, but always directed directly towards the deities.  I felt it on a deep soul level and felt myself being swept away with the power of the connection to God felt in the small room.  Since the chanting is repetitive, and the women took turns leading it, I was very often able to join in. And from my years in India, several of the chants I realized I actually knew the words to myself!  This surprised me and of course brought great joy and approving pleasure to the faces  of the women. And of course, clapping along with everyone else was a no brainer, even for me!!  🙂

The visit afterwards with Manju and the Doctor was thoroughly enjoyable as always, with good conversation, seeing the beautiful wedding album from their eldest son’s wedding last year (the daughter in law of course now living there with them) and of course a superb light dinner.  With soup, idlis, subji, shahi paneer (Manju makes the best in India for sure and she always remembers how much I like it and makes it for me when I come), chutney and of course chapattis with ghee . Dr Arora drove us home, quite late…tired but with full stomachs and happy hearts.

Now having my last breakfast here at the Pundir Restaurant after being treated to a wonderful whole wheat chapatti and homemade ghee when I stopped by Seema’s house earlier.

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The sky is cloudy today for the first time in 6 weeks.  I feel “cloudy” myself. Must be raining somewhere up in the mountains to bring the clouds and colder weather today.

Neelkanth Temple in Distance

Neelkanth Temple in Distance

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And somewhere deep inside of me there is a “rainy” feeling as well.

evening clouds

evening clouds

The day continued quietly, with goodbyes to everyone, always difficult, but even more so after such a short stay, and of course packing up my stuff for storage as well as for taking home.  The sky was beautiful to watch during the day and evening,

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and before heading off to Delhi by taxi, I had my last supper of schnitzel and chips!!  🙂

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The ride on the new highway took less than 5 hours….

Sachin provided me with a pillow so I could sleep in the car on the way.  I dozed on and off…and to my great surprise was in delhi in less than 5 hours!!  New road is good for sure.
Found a nice bench in the departure lounge to lay down on for another hour until they opened the RJ check in counter.  They really hassled me about my carry on- it didn’t fit into the “rack” which measures them.  Finally they called the supervisor, and she allowed me to take it.  What a pain in the ass.  The whole thing took over an hour but luckily I was first on line and when I got to the gate, there was even a free bed to lie down on which I did of course.

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Last Sunrise Over Delhi During Take Off

Last Sunrise Over Delhi During Take Off

the flight was fine but it seems the AC as not working….it was really hot on the plane.
Good flight to amman but it is over 7 hours going back.  The plane was not full so there was no one next to me which made it easier to  sleep a little with my legs over the handle of the next seat.
1/2 hour delay in Amman but that meant yosi actually got the airport in time to pick me up.  It was nice.
We went and had a nice breakfast in Yehud and then headed home and got stuck in a HAIL STORM!!  Thought the car windows would crack the pieces were so big!
And then later on in the evening, my house was struck directly by lightning and my phone went dead while talking to yosi.  and my cellphone needed to be charged but I had no electricity, so we couldn’t talk.  It was easier talking to him from India!

And now I am home, a week later, writing this last post!!  I will be posting several more photo posts, and then saying goodbye until next year!  Look forward to seeing you all once again then!

Namaste from Herzlia, Israel


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