Friday, September 14, 2012

4th installment of the epic photo series

Our room at the hostel in Varanasi was what we called "Liberace-chic" - this is to say, BRIGHT. The colors of India are commented on by every person with functioning vision who goes there. India is one huge disorganized rainbow, with a good helping of glitter thrown in. We decided one day to go and drop a couple of bucks on flower garlands, since they were being sold everywhere for puja and funerals, and the sellers were thrilled to see two foreigners take an interest in their flowers. Each garland (here, of roses) was really only pennies to purchase, and we walked back to the hostel laden with flowers. I love the simplicity and color in this photo.

Sunlight on the water, I believe in Goa...

Rishikesh. Rishikesh is the cool, clear, hilly counterpart to the noise and chaos of so much of India. Rishikesh is also one of the holy cities (as is Haridwar, where this sadhu was photographed), and so alcohol is not permitted - it is also, I believe, where the Beatles met the Maharishi. The folks who travel up here are a quieter breed, seeking spirituality and a rest. While I stayed here for an extra day and then went on to Delhi, my friend went up to Dharamsala. So Rishikesh is also where I learned to navigate India by myself - no small feat!

Since we're on an Indian kick with this post, this is my ear after a couple of hours outside in Delhi during Holi. You should probably just go ahead and read this.

A field of tulips in Washington state. I'm pretty sure I don't have to explain the awesomeness of this picture.

When I lived in London, I would often come to Richmond Park, an enormous park near my university. As I said, it was not a good educational experience, so I really relied on opportunities to escape when I could. There are herds of deer that roam the park, and I was lucky enough to get this close to a grown male.

More fairy-tale London, in Kensington. These white townhouses are such quintessential posh London homes, and I remember walking through this neighborhood with my mother when I was a child, as she told me about growing up in London and pointed out where she and her friends lived. It's funny, between the whitewashed homes and the palm trees, London can feel Mediterranean at times...

This was taken in November of 2010, as I rode the East Coast Railways train up to Edinburgh to celebrate Thanksgiving with an old American friend of mine. As we traveled north, we went in and out of white-outs and squalls, and I (being a Christmas obsessive) was lstening to Mannheim Steamroller's Stille Nacht on repeat. That weekend, I fell in love with Edinburgh - and if I'm lucky, another friend of mine will soon be promoting his travel guide to Edinburgh on this site!

This photo and the next are neck-and-neck for my favorite images of London. This was one of my last full days living in the city in the summer of 2011, and I had just said goodbye to my family. I was so lucky to have a year to really spend time with them, and we had gone out for a posh lunch and a movie in Leicester Square. I was miserable saying goodbye to them, and then the epic rainstorm that had soaked me subsided... and the city SPARKLED.

After the same rainstorm, as it got dark and I went to meet my friend for a goodbye drink.

I've shown this photo before - and to me it is the ultimate proof that the UK is not at all one homogeneous culture.
Now, be sure to visit Untapped Cities and check out my first post there! And stay tuned for more of my favorite travel photos...

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