Images from India

Here are some random photos from our trip to India. I realize that they are not beautiful images of India and that they seem a bit strange to post but that is just the way my brain works. You won’t find these on tourist advertisements for India.

The photo below is of the bathroom in the apartment we had borrowed. When you take your shower the toilet gets soaked. Liebling is touching the shower head and the 220 electrical box at the same time, a great way to get electrocuted. In North America, the electrical supply company would disconnect all power to your house if they saw this. I am sure Indians have been killed by this set up in the past.

When we told people where we were staying in Calcutta, they were all impressed and said we had a good location. The photo below is of the door to the apartment. It has a key lock in the door, a pad lock on the door and a gate with a pad lock on it to cover the door. The main door to the building also has a gate with a pad lock. The first day we were there it took me 5 minutes to find the right keys and unlock all the locks to get into the apartment. I am glad we were not in a bad location.

With my twisted mind, all I could think of was that if they gate is unlocked, you know the people must be home. Even better, I could lock them into their own apartment with this system. “Sorry I am late boss but I couldn’t get out of my apartment.”

The photos below are of Holy cows. They wander the streets eating garbage.

Below is a by-product of cows, what I like to call “Holy Shit”, although that is not what I said after I stepped in it.

Only the well off have running water in Calcutta, here is a woman doing her laundry on the street corner. There are hand pump wells and water taps around the city that people can use. Our friend Salim said that India was a better place to live than Canada because water is free and you can always grow your own rice. He works 6 days a week at the hotel and has to sleep there as his home is too far away to travel every day. He earns 8,000 rupees or $160 CAD a month.

Indian school bus. It may not look too fancy but it doesn’t get stuck in traffic and laughs in the face of North American kids big talk about “going green”.

Fisherman relaxing on the beach in Puri. They are surrounded by garbage.

I liked this sign and its effectiveness.

The Monk below said prayers for our family. We had the choice of paying either 700, 1,200 0r 2,200 rupees to have the monks pray for our family every day for the next year, proving that money really can buy happiness. Having enough happiness in our lives, we went with the 700 rupee option. I wanted to cut out one or two of our kids from the prayers to get more for me but Liebling wouldn’t hear of it.



Train to Puri, India

When we were in India last week (no Internet) we took the train from Calcutta to Puri and back. We took the night train at 7pm and arrived in Puri at 5:30am. It was our first time sleeping on a train, there were another 2 bunks above us occupied by 2 young men. The rocking of the train and clacking of the tracks was a pleasant experience.

We took the 6:30 am train on the way back. When we arrived at the station at 6am small stalls were open selling food and drinks. Below is a bookstall open with books in different Indian languages and popular English authors. My favourite author would be so proud to see books being sold to be read and enjoyed on a trip. The English books were cheaper than in Canada.

The toilets drained directly onto the tracks. They ask Gentleman to lift the seats. I saw one woman ensure her son did not pee on the seat by making him stand outside the door of the western toilet and pee into the bathroom onto the floor instead. She then walked into the toilet stall in her flip-flops to do her business. Luckily I had taken my picture before.

The scenery was wonderful but my window was old and my photos are not very nice to post. This one was taken through the open doors between wagons.

It was a very nice trip in both directions. I have never worn flip-flops or sandals in my life and Liebling always laughs at me. Well, guess who’s laughing now, “pee-pee feet”.