Tag Archives: A Journey In Pictures

Gargoyles

History is my hobby. And art and architecture is it’s most telling representation. I find modern buildings staid, lacking in variety– they are utilitarian, of course, but singularly boring. Some do make it out of the mould, but those are few and far between. Hence, whenever I travel I seek out old buildings. They are so much more attractive and compelling and come in so many styles– each narrating the story of the place and the era when they were built. And they seem so solid and permanent. So, when I heard about the Notre Dame fire, I was shocked. I couldn’t believe it until I saw the live images on the news. That building besides being n invaluable example of gothic art, is a prominent part of history. It has witnessed the French Revolution and survived it and who is not aquainted with the famous Hugo classic ‘Notre-Dame de Paris’ or it’s English translation ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’.

At first, there was fear the entire structure would be destroyed. Fortunately, that didn’t occur but I understand most of the roof and the spire are gone. Now, I can say how lucky I was to have visited the place a few years ago and trudged up the narrow spiral staircase to get up close to the cathedral’s famous gargoyles which happened to be the favorite part of my visit. For those who aren’t aware, gargoyles are grotesque creatures that act as spouts to direct water away from the building. Apparently they are also supposed to ward off the evil eye. But were they able to protect themselves — I hope so…  Below I share some precious snaps from my visit :–

Under the Shade of the Banyan

banyan-tree.jpgOriginal art by Sneha (oil pastel)

Under the Shade of the Banyan

`

Banias conduct business

Gods meditate and recline

My leaves dispense knowledge

My structure reflects the world

Material and Spiritual

Study me

 I am the eternal tree

`

The Banyan tree is the national tree of India and Bangladesh. The word Banyan comes from the Gujarati word Bania or trader. The word was picked up by the Portugese to refer to the Hindu traders who used to sit under the shade of these trees to conduct their business and passed it on to the English who began to refer to the ‘Banyan’ trees. 🙂

Interesting? Learn more here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banyan

Coconut Water- Mother Nature’s Sports Drink!

coconut palm-kerala

There used to be a time when one had to fly thousands of miles across the seas to get a taste of pure refreshing coconut water. Just the thought was enough kindle a picture of tall swaying coconut palms along virgin tropical beaches.

But no more! They are available right here in my grocery store — and flavored ones too! Cafe Latte anyone?

Coconut water-1

Marketed as ‘Mother Nature’s Sports Drink’ and endorsed by leading athletes and celebrities, this product has taken off!

It has fewer calories, less sodium and more potassium than the leading sports drink. All you need to do is like the taste which isn’t hard to do. It is slightly sweet and nutty in flavor.

But no matter what, nothing beats the taste of fresh water drunk directly out of the young green coconuts followed by eating the soft white meat inside. Ahhh.. PARADISE!

coconut water 2

The Girl at the Window

windows 2-001

Safdarjung Tomb, Delhi, India

The Girl at the Window

—o—

I see her everyday

At the window of her house

Her face lurking in the shadows

Finding cover in the veil of secrecy

Obscurity in a shroud of seclusion

But her beauty is not hidden from me

`

She’s a princess

From a faraway exotic land

I know not her name

Yet she has become a part of my life

My daily scenery

And I miss her now that she is gone

Retracing History- Florentine Streets

Florentine street

Did Michelangelo, Botticelli, da Vinci, Donatello traverse these streets?

Perhaps not

But I like to think otherwise

And that I am retracing history

Wow! What a feeling!