This is one of the most disturbing images of life in the higher reaches of northern India. Because of the terrain, the absence of traffic and population scattered across several hills, porters such as this one carry huge amounts of goods – from boxes, cooking gas cylinders, girders, carpets – and everything else – up the steep slopes. Modern technology does not seem to have reached many parts of this continent of a nation where a very large percentage of people survive – and thrive – on hard manual labour day after day. The picture was taken in British India’s summer capital, Shimla, one of the most scenic places in the country.
These large pine trees, so common in the hills of Northern India, typically thrive at high altitudes and present a beautiful ‘looking up’ sight in the summer months. Strangely, though, during winters, they are listless and droopy, perhaps shivering in extremely cold conditions and the ‘weight’ of constant snowfall. This picture was taken during an earlier summer trip to Kasauli, in Himachal Pradesh state.
The visit brought back memories of when, as college students, we trekked in the area every other month. The greatest feeling then was walking along the mountain track surrounded by these gigantic trees and their constant ‘hissing’ sound, more like a million snakes making that sound all at one time.
The other memory is that of the peculiar smell of pine, something that we now experience in aerosol room fresheners and disinfectants. But, of course, they are only memories.
If only we could turn the clock back but, as they say, there’s no rewind button on life!
Hundreds of while collar expatriate workers, mostly from Bangladesh, converge at the well-known ‘Bangali Galli’ (the street of the Bengali’s) in Bahrain’s Muharraq district every weekend to spend quality time together.
They get together not only to exchange notes over the week gone by but also play games, the most popular being carom and cards.
The whole area is a splash of colour and a beehive of activity with a casual visitor like me not even sure he’s in Bahrain!There are similar gathering spots all over Bahrain where these workers get together, so that they do not have to travel far from where they stay!
I spent an hour sitting in my living room balcony last night, just looking at the traffic pass by. Then I looked at the lights in the several skyscrapers around me. And that’s when I got the camera. Every window seems to have a story to tell and so does the traffic. The makeshift weekend parking lot adjoining a construction site tells a tale of its own!