We saw the Taj Mahal just before sunset and it almost blended into the skyscape at that time of late afternoon.
Our tour guides concentrated on Muslim mosques, tombs and monuments which were preserved and restored from the 17th century. Those are the tourist attraction of this area. Muslims, as you know, don’t believe in depictions of sentient beings so they eradicated so much of what was here before. The early column and lintel entrances, plain arched entrances are mainly replaced by the more decorative arches. This produced a great variety of intricate designs.
* Please note: we took two days off sick and the guide changed the order of some of our visits so the names might be a bit confused. I have done my best to identify cities and monuments.
Hawa Mahal, palace of the winds built for the harem so that they could sit at the windows and view the scene below without being seen. Just one room wide, this is more of a facade than a real building. But it was typical of the beauty of this pink city.
|The bride and 4 bridemaids!|
|Hall of Mirrors|
|Stunning building right in the middle of the lake. Our guide told us this will be a restaurant but it has been held up for 3 years by permits.|
Agra and the Taj Mahal
|Memorial to Gandhi|
|Nizamuddin Basti was on the tomb property and part of the Urban Renewal Initiative. We were told the residents were sometimes paid to visit these renovations and become involved in the tourist industry.|
|8th century AD Stone Goddess sculpture|
|Early black stone sculpture from the Jain period.|
|This black stone sculpture is of a dwarf avatar of Vishnu and the story goes that he could have all the territory he could cover in three strides. He was a trickster and changes into a giant and then dominated.|
|4th century life size statue in buff colored sand stone of Yakshi, a divine damsel of love and beauty|
|I could not resist including two of the series of small sculptures of yogi poses.|
|And two shelves of many of this weird variety of faces and hats.|
|Bikaner Gold Lacquer Ware on Pottery from Rajasthan, late 19th century|
|Chillhams are clay pots used to smoke opium and were introduced just after the Mojhal courts came to India.|
Bahawalpur Surahi Kagazi (Paper thin) double handled water bottle with triangular cut work on rim, Bahawalpur, 19th century.
|These rounds boxes reminded me of those made to roll around on elaborate carpets to make the patterns come to life.|
|Two intricately carved ivory pieces. Much of the display was not labelled with dates.|
|On our rickshaw ride over every pothole in Old Delhi we saw overhead a continuous knot of wires leading us to wonder if this is the call center to which we are directed for help with IT.|
|In this photo, I was somehow able to capture the serene beauty of this very populated country in an image that could have come out of a French turn of the century landscape. I will probably best remember India in this way.|