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Subsidiary
...unpaid observations, sometimes not photographic!!
...the homoeopathic doctor.

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New years have gotten boring.  It is the same old year with probably some weddings, births, deaths, and all the mundane stuff.  2009 was a rare year though.

An Alappuzha Sunset

If 2010 gives me an orange, I would go and sit by the sea and watch the sunset make orange squash in the sky.

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The rusting wharf...


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A Waterfall

On the mountaintop
water appears
and tumbles down.

- Takahama Kyoshi

...spellbinding

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It is rare that you get the feeling of timelessness when you visit a place or town.  Alleppey, is that place.  The labyrinth of waterways and canals aside, Alleppey's streets propel you back in time.


An early morning walk reveals several lanes and by-lanes, dotted with charming houses and buildings of an era gone by.  Few more...Collapse )

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On Saturday, I got a call from a friend from my hometown.  He said that there were protests back home for clarification from the government on whether Arunachal Pradesh had come under Chinese rule.  All of this, apparently, started because Google messed up.

When I checked for what happened, I found that Google Maps has named most of the towns of Arunachal Pradesh in Mandarin as opposed to Hindi (since Arunachal Pradesh is part of sovereign India).  The Chinese must have been really happy.  I mean, they were the ones who stormed out of the Simla Accord, and never really accepted the original McMahon Line.

According to this report in The Times Of India, Google has admitted its mistake.  But I was just thinking if Google really messed up or if it is vulnerable to Chinese hackers (there is a thicker dotted line of the Chinese-demanded border).

Well, I have grown up picknicking and hiking in Arunachal Pradesh.  The possibility of walking in Chinese terrain, I am not even thinking about it, even in my dreams.

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When traveling, it is important to carry a good nose. At Alappuzha (Alleppey), the Kream Korner has some really good food, both coastal Kerala cuisine as well as non-coastal such as some North Malabar dishes.


This photograph however is a little lucky and it makes me nostalgic.  I didn't see the blue Fiat when I was taking the picture, I saw it much later.  About being nostalgic, my father has a 1982 blue Fiat, that still runs like a dream, when I drive it through tea gardens and look away from the road.

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The ice cream vendor on a Kerala beach one balmy evening in autumn.


What else would you want!

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As requested by maxaud, here goes the picture of the waiter, printed in The Hindu.


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My photo-essay in The Hindu, this Sunday about the India Coffee House, which will vanish from MG Road, Bangalore.

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I became friends while taking their pictures.


Each of them was dynamic and full of energy, and their smile progressed thus as the afternoon wore on.
...the smile.Collapse )
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I really never knew that one can actually buy a set of Jackstones to play Jacks.  I grew up watching girls play this game, thinking that this game was certainly not for boys.  But I have played Jacks (called Hetali in Assamese) and have never won.


And I am sure that the girls in the house used to cheat me.

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The government school at Belagili, I was told, was built under the SSA scheme.  A handicapped stairway and a rainwater harvest unit overwhelmed me.


This is an English classroom, from what I gathered.

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During the Independence Day weekend, a friend called me to ask if I can accompany him to North Karnataka to photograph for chances4childhood.  I agreed and found myself on an SUV to North Karnataka that very evening.  We were headed to Mudhol.  Now the only thing I knew about Mudhol was the Mudhol Hound.  In fact, much later, when I was roaming about the streets near the hotel where I stayed, I was astonished to see that almost all the stray dogs were quite tall and had the build of a hound.

The journey had been bumpy and I had to head straight to bed the moment we reached Mudhol.  After an hour's sleep and some breakfast we headed to several villages to look at the various clay dolls the children were modelling for the chances4childhood day of play.  While moving from village to village, rain was aplenty and I so loved it.


In the afternoon, we went around Mudhol to get us some of those famous green pepper fries.  My friend was explaining that the pepper was just the hot that was necessary and the fries were just the crunchy.  And, he wasn't wrong.

That evening we went to a Khanavali, a local eatery, and sat right next to the kitchen where two elderly women (one of them was the owner's mother and the other was an aunt) were baking rotis.  Khanavalis are famous in North Karnataka for their fresh food and fresh ingredients.

The rotis (we had a choice between jowar/sorghum and wheat) are served hot and they bake according to the order.  These are usually accompanied by a spicy and curried vegetable gravy.  The food was fresh, spicy, and just fantastic.  Most Khanavalis here and around are run by people belonging to the Lingayat community.  My friend explained that there is no fixed charge for the food that one eats, one can pay any amount for the food served.

The only other thing worth mentioning that night was Usain Bolt's 9.69 secs.

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chances4childhood is an initiative taken by Everychild to showcase what children play with and how around the world.  The showcase includes photographs of children and toys made by children.  The exhibition is currently on at the.gallery@oxo, Oxo Tower Wharf, Bargehouse Street, South Bank, London till December 7.


Children from Ukraine, India, Kyrgyzstan, Romania, Malawi and Guyana were documented in photos of which I had a fantastic time shooting the kids at Mudhol, in North Karnataka.  However, I only came to know about the exhibition dates today (it's been on since November).

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