Northern India special edition

After going through so many countries in Asia, we already felt familiar with the exotic culture, the languages with unreadable characters, eating without knowing what was in the dish, strange habits. We were quite comfortable in this whole difference. Suddenly there comes India.

There is no such thing as ‘being prepared’ for India. It is a place to turn all your concepts upside down. It’s an avalanche of perceptions. Curry, clove, chilli, paprika, chai, lassi, incense, garbage, pollution, sacred cows, rickshaws, camels, carpets, fine silk, super detailed saris, extremely intricate architecture, poverty, wealth, happiness, sadness, beautiful, ugly, calm and chaotic. All in a fraction of second.

Heeeaaps of people. Even in a small village in the desert or in the mountains you’ll find many people. The trains are crowded, the traffic in cities is pure insanity. The faith, the hundreds of religions, the millions of holy men and almost a god for every activity of the day, the karma-kola, a term used to define the market of faith in which foreigners are the main clients.

Every type of landscape imaginable, from beaches with palm trees, deserts with camels, snow-capped mountains with crystal water rivers and cities with a history to make the Coliseum look like modern architecture.

The main highlight, people. They’re very social and curious. They hug and kiss you all the time, want to know everything about your life. The notion of privacy and personal space is much smaller in India, this excludes women who can’t have any contact with man in public or expose “sexy” parts of their bodies like the shoulders. They’re amazing at remembering names, dates, stories and deal with clients as they make food and count the change.

Finally, diversity is such that it’s impossible to leave without changing your concepts about everything. I remember like it was yesterday the long five minutes I spent jaw dropped with no action when I first arrived in Pahar Ganj, a suburb of Delhi. India is definitely another dimension.

When we were planning the round the world trip, India wasn’t the destination that most excited me. I had heard many dodgy stories, which we also experienced, but it is not that bad. The main reason for us to go there was to meet Duda, Cris’ brother, and Drica, his partner, who have been living there for a few years. And also because Cris  has always wanted to go there. During the journey it was great to have Duda and Drica as our ‘guides’. They took us to very special places, explained us the habits, stories and tips that greatly enriched our time in India.

We spent twenty days there, a very short time for a country as large and diverse as India, even for the north alone. A reasonable time would be three months for this region. Still we had experiences to fill a book and pictures to begin an exhibition (you’ll see them on the posts to come), so we decided to create a 5 part special series:

Delhi, the main stop

The capital of India with the best and the worst of what the country has to offer. A huge city, crowded, chaotic. It was our stopping point between a trip and another. We stayed in Pahar Ganj planning the next destination, and while waiting for the next bus/train/plane we visited local markets, restaurants and galleries with all kinds of imaginable stuff to sell.

Pushkar and the Rajasthan Desert

Heat, dust, camels and temples. We were in the Rajasthan desert during the “Camel Fair”, an event that unites the entire region. We had the opportunity to know the real inhabitants of the desert with their colorful turbans and white robes. Yet knew the caste of tailors, helping Drica and Duda in their work. We visited temples on the mountains and a Kali Baba living in an oasis. The beautiful Pushkar, the only city in India dedicated to Lord Brahma.

Parvati Valley, the Indian Himalayas

Lush green forests of pines, crystal clear rivers and snow-capped mountains that could even be mistaken for European landscapes. We spent a few freezing nights sharing a room with no bed or bathroom among 6 people in a small village at 3,000 meters high. Between treks in the mountains, we ate with the villagers and caught some firewood to keep us warm at night with our tandoori. We went to hot springs and rode down the Himalayas close to huge cliffs on the top of a local bus.

Dharamsala, a piece of Tibet in India

Monks, Buddhist temples and the colorful Tibetan flags. This town at the foot of the mountains was a journey in Tibetan art and culture with its detailed paintings and sculptures. We visited psychedelic temples, had tea in the mountains and walked along trails at the bottom of the Himalayas.

Varanasi, the oldest city in the world

Age-old buildings, the finest silk of India, outdoor cremation, countless temples and the sacred  Ganges River, where India has begun. We stayed in a few hundred years building, we saw the incredible Puja, a sacred ceremony that happens every night on the banks of the Ganges, we visited temples, saw some bodies being cremated and others literally waiting for death to come. We walked through many labyrinths in the city, sharing the space with thief monkeys, cows eating garbage, traders, bodies, holy men and others less so.

After this trip we started to split the Earth in the West, the East and India. It is a unique place. We have no doubt that we will return. Stay tuned, the series is just beginning.

59 comments

Leave a comment
    • Oscar says:
    • 21 July, 2010 at 2:34 am

    Ual Essa série promete!!!

    Gostei da Divisão Oriente/Ocidente e India!! Uma viagem por esse país deve ser uma experiencia antropologica magnifica!!

    Abraço

    Oscar

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 21 July, 2010 at 10:32 am

      sim e numa escala e intensidade difíceis de imaginar. Espero que a gente consiga descrever pelo menos um pouquinho disso.

      Reply

    • Ana Rita says:
    • 21 July, 2010 at 6:05 am

    Felipe:
    Agora entendi quando vc me disse que tinha que fazer um estágio na Tailândia antes de ir para a Índia.
    Essa cor de fundo e a moldura ficaram maravilhosos.
    Apesar de estar “familiarizada” com toda essa diversidade, por ter um filho morando lá, ainda me surpreendo e fico curiosa para saber mais e muuuuito mais.
    Parabéns, ótimo trabalho!!!
    Bjs.

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 21 July, 2010 at 11:07 am

      Oi Ana obrigado pelos elogios, só uma correcão isso não é trabalho… É diversão.
      Ir pro oriente já é o primeiro passo pra mudar um pouco o nosso “mindset” ocidental. Temos uma ótica muito materialista. Talvez seja um dos motivos por algumas pessoas se frustrarem de ir pra lá, ou de ter uma resistência em ir como eu tive.

      Conversei um pouco com o Duda a última vez que fui pra Bali (que também é um bom estágio antes da Índia) pensamos como seria uma visita de vocês à Índia.

      Espero que vocês possam ir pra lá visitá-los. Tenho certeza que como eu vocês vão dividir a vida entre antes e depois da Índia.

      Reply

    • Simone says:
    • 21 July, 2010 at 8:07 am

    Cris, ficou muito bonito este layout da página personalizado por cidade/local, coisa de designer! Nem li o post ainda, mas já gostei pelo bom gosto! ;-D

    Ah! Aproveita e dá uma olhada em meu BLOG DE VIAGEM! Ainda não lancei “oficialmente”, mas já tem conteúdo e muitas fotos!
    http://www.flashesdeviagem.blogspot.com

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 21 July, 2010 at 12:59 pm

      Estamos nos divertindo(eu principalmente)com esse estilo mais revista. Acho que acabamos sendo mais exigentes no que escrevemos e publicamos.

      A gostei da Europa miniatura. Bem interessante.

      Continue publicando.

      Reply

      • Cris says:
      • 21 July, 2010 at 5:11 pm

      Oi Simone,
      Coisa de designer mesmo… mas eu só fico dando pitaco no trabalho do Felipe. Pitacos sempre valiosos, claro! hehehe

      Seu blog está super legal, já tem um montão de posts! Nem parece que não foi lançado oficialmente ainda. Parabéns.

      Reply

        • Melia says:
        • 8 January, 2017 at 10:03 am

        How would one send the funds they would donate?Love the Elf Pond. Maybe there are a few more Elf designs in that lovely brain of yos.u..rHugs

        Reply

      • I was looking for and landed your blog but found very interesting. I liked your blog very much. Thanks for posting such a wonderful contents. Though its not related to my Search but really I am impressed with your blog.

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      • Oi Carol!Bom sou eu de novo…caso você não viu o comentário que eu te deixei, talvez você veja esse né.é pra falar do livro do EDUARDO SPOHR, é muito bom!pelo menos eu achei né..o nome do livro é A BATALHA DO APOCALIPSE – DA QUEDA DOS ANJOS, AO CREPUSCULO DO MUNDO – procure saber desse livro, e me diga o que achou…Obrigado por ler, e se puder, me responda…[]

        Reply

      • Wow! What a web log! I really like how it is easygoing on my eyes and also the assemblage are well typed. I am wondering how I might be notified whenever a hot record has been made. I have signed to your rss feed which must proceed the trick! By!

        Reply

      • Well, he talks about progressives getting laid all the time. Steve Sailer always talks about them being lonely.The two are hardly exclusive. The loneliest people I’ve known were the ones who got laid all the time. Empty sex is muy mal for the soul, mi’jo.M

        Reply

    • Du says:
    • 21 July, 2010 at 8:29 am

    Dá-lhe, Felipe! Vou dar o link do blog pra minha mãe, que vai encontrar a gente na Índia! Já tô ansiosa pelos próximos posts! hehe

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 21 July, 2010 at 1:12 pm

      Caramba viajar a Índia com os pais. A única coisa que você pode esperar é o inesperado… vou pensar nisso quando formos dar dicas…

      Abraço

      Reply

        • Du says:
        • 22 July, 2010 at 9:03 am

        Das 6 semanas que vamos ficar na Índia, minha mãe vai estar em duas com a gente! Acho que ela vai pegar Varanasi e a parte norte (Amritsar, Dharamsala). Depois ela vai prum Ashram da Self-Realization Fellowship, saca? :)

        Reply

    • Ana Padilha says:
    • 21 July, 2010 at 9:44 am

    UAU Gostei da tática para segurar os leitores. Já estou ansiosa esperando o próximo capítulo.

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 21 July, 2010 at 1:17 pm

      Em breve cenas do próximo capítulo… hehehe :)

      Reply

  1. Adorei o blog de vocês! Muito organizadinho, com textos ótimos e fotos lindas! parabéns!
    Se vocês quiserem dar uma olhada, também tenho um blog de viagens. O layout não é tão profissional quanto o de vocês mas é feito com todo amor e carinho!rsrs
    Beijo!

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 21 July, 2010 at 6:29 pm

      Oi Deise,
      Impressionante o teu acervo de posts sobre Moscow… Muita coisa interessante. Parabens.

      Reply

      • Kaylan says:
      • 8 January, 2017 at 9:26 am

      Great Blog here what we need to try to fly I could love it or not, but in any case I wake up torrmoow morning to face another day you might

      Reply

    • Such an impressive answer! You’ve beaten us all with that!

      Reply

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    • Sut-Mie says:
    • 21 July, 2010 at 1:52 pm

    Parabéns! Está tudo maravilhoso: o post, as fotos, o lay-out! Tudo! Adorei! Aguardo ansiosamente o resto! Imagino o que vem por aí!
    Bjs

    Reply

    • Felipe says:
    • 21 July, 2010 at 6:31 pm

    Valeu pelos elogios… em breve tem mais… :)

    Reply

    • Marcello says:
    • 22 July, 2010 at 1:05 pm

    Great article!! im planning my trip around the world and am seriously considering stopping in India before I head to Thailand. Muito bem!

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 23 July, 2010 at 12:30 am

      If you haven’t been to any of them, I’d recommend you to go first to Thailand and then India…. The good thing about Índia is that you can save a lot there… accommodation and food are really cheap (of course quality matches price) but it is overwhelming if you’re going straight from any western country.

      Reply

        • Jayne says:
        • 8 January, 2017 at 11:58 am

        The paragon of unrtnseadding these issues is right here!

        Reply

      • Perón fue lo peor para Argentina, la sumergio en la Mafia, asociandose al NAZISMO, ya que entre 1939 a 1941 fue a estudiar con Mussollini y Hitler. La mafia NazionalSocialista,. solo con ignorantes funciona el modelo bananero

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      • Kjempefin, elv i nøytralt stoff. Og, du har jammen meg ei søt, lita snelle! Saccosekk sto i flere Ã¥r høyt pÃ¥ min ønskeliste, fikk aldri..kjøpte derfor en selv i voksen alder, som selvsagt aldri ble brukt og endte til slutt hos fretex!Ha en fin mandag!

        Reply

    • Antonio Campos says:
    • 23 July, 2010 at 9:37 am

    Felipe,
    Muuuuuito bom, grande sacada postar em capítulos,já estou ansioso pelos demais.
    Mais uma vez parabéns.
    Grande abraço

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 23 July, 2010 at 8:28 pm

      valeu sogrão Delhi já tá no forno….

      Reply

    • Erica says:
    • 23 July, 2010 at 3:14 pm

    Good lord this is amazing.

    I have to say that you are one of my most favorite blogs. This layout is beautiful and your pictures are fantastic. I cannot for the series to begin!

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 23 July, 2010 at 9:11 pm

      wow that’s massive compliment… By the way I’ve being reading your blog what a great adventure you’re heading to … South america is no doubt one of the best places to visit, you’ll be amazed with the culture and the warmth of the people. We’re starting to put things together for this first Delhi post, hope you enjoy it. :)

      Reply

        • Tuesday says:
        • 8 January, 2017 at 4:06 pm

        This “free sharing” of initomarfon seems too good to be true. Like communism.

        Reply

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      • Thanks for this great tutorial! The video was very helpful, I watched it a few times to make sure I knew what I was doing. It was my first time sewing a zipper and boxed corners, and I think it came out great! I am going to use it to keep my infant son’s medicine and first aid stuff together when travelling! Love it!

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      • mbak nanya yaaa…aku udah kepalang beli yoghurt yang cair….bisa diberdayakan ngga ya?abis sayang banget kalo harus beli yoghurt lagi (yg kentel maksudnya)…di tempatku ngga ada yg jual sour cream….

        Reply

      • Margie says:
      • 8 January, 2017 at 4:06 pm

      Cailnlg all cars, calling all cars, we’re ready to make a deal.

      Reply

    • That kind of thinking shows you’re an expert

      Reply

    • I’m experiencing a situation with your rss feed . Don’t know why I am not able to subscribe to it. Is there anyone getting similar rss problem? Anyone who is aware of kindly respond. Thanks

      Reply

    • Aside from how sad this seems to make one of the true masters of the medium, what I find most disheartening about this whole thing is the faux mercenary attitude of the fan boys supporting DC in this venture. They’re all fucking contract geniuses with their 20/20 hindsight, twenty-six years later. What they don’t realize is that, anonymously attempting to be an alpha male while pontificating about comics on the internet doesn’t make you more savvy than anyone else, it just makes you an ignorant amoral cunt.

      Reply

  3. What a gorgeous layout and stunning photos!! Love all of the shots and the fact that they are so huge and visible :-) India is such a unique experience so I’m eager to see the rest of this series!

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 26 July, 2010 at 9:02 pm

      Hi Shannon, thanks for the compliments and for the review on stumble. We’re glad that such good bloggers like you are enjoying it ..:)

      Reply

        • Diandra says:
        • 8 January, 2017 at 10:13 am

        Alexko> Ca ne change rien au problème : TF1 ou M6 ne diffusent pas les VOST.Par ailleurs, pour moi qui dessine en même temps (oui, je sais, c’est un crime), je loupe la moitié des sotsit-ures.

        Reply

  4. Stunning post. It really blew me away, it breaks the mould of blogging. Warm and inviting design, emotive words and powerful imagery. Not to mention, the greatest country on earth (in my opinion).

    Thanks for sharing.

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 28 July, 2010 at 9:56 pm

      Hi Ant,
      wow thanks a lot. I’ve been following your blog for about a month now and it’s impressive how deep you can get with your stories. You can give a very unique and rich angle. This blog is being a great exercise for me as a copywriter, and this feedback is a huge motivation. About India I totally agree.

      Reply

  5. Cris,

    Absolutamente maravilhoso o site de vcs! Amei as fotos, o design, a escrita, a sensibilidade com o tema… tudo!

    Fora que o país em si já ajuda também, né? É fantástico, mágico, multifacetado, misterioso… Realmente, como vocês disseram, uma divisão a parte no mundo.

    Meus parabéns, com verdadeira admiração! Adorei! Já está definitivamente como um dos meus blogs favoritos!

    Beijos,

    Clarissa

    Reply

      • Cris says:
      • 29 July, 2010 at 12:58 pm

      Oi Clarissa, que legal ver você por aqui!
      Uau!! Obrigada pelos elogios, não sei nem o que dizer. 😀

      Você tem toda razão, a Índia em si já ajuda bastante, além de tudo isso que você falou, é também um país super fotogênico!

      Beijos beijos xx

      Reply

  6. I really love this post guys. You have really made me want to go to India, whereas before I have not been so sure. You have really highlighted what is amazing about it, through powerful imagery and stunning photos. The layout is also very effective!

    Reply

      • Felipe says:
      • 2 August, 2010 at 10:57 pm

      Thanks Caz, you’ll be fine there is a piece of India to every taste. It doesn’t mean though, you won’t have that classic “first time in India” face when you get there it’s a jaw dropping place in almost every sense… A really remarkable and unforgetable experience.

      Reply

      • Brandi says:
      • 8 January, 2017 at 9:42 am

      wahh , bestnya semua yang dapat 8A/9A . tahun depan , saya pula yang akan menkduudi pmr . saya suka baca comment kat sini sekali sekala , sebab bagi semangat untuk study . harap harap , tahun depan , saya dapat 9A , Amiin !

      Reply

    • Myron, sometimes it feels so near, and sometimes 3 layers x 3 away. I too am encouraged when I hear the stories of letting go, and I definitely hear them in your writing. Whoever goes first, leave bread crumbs! HUGS and Love

      Reply

  7. Pingback: Best Travel Blog Posts for week of July 25 | yTravelBlog

    • Crystal says:
    • 21 December, 2010 at 5:43 am

    What a great post! My husband and I are starting a fair trade fine arts company in 2011. He is taking an exploratory trip to Northern India in early April to meet artisans in isolated and exotic locations. Your post was very exciting :) Thanks!

    Reply

    • Vikrant says:
    • 22 July, 2011 at 12:39 am

    India Is A Great Country

    Reply

    • Susie says:
    • 8 January, 2017 at 10:34 am

    Dette var nydelig! Første gang, tror jeg, at jeg har sett slike bilder av den eldre garde. Men å, så minnluesig jeg ble! Tenk å få oppleve dette! Da har en noe å jobbe frem mot, tenker jeg!!

    Reply

  8. OH Kelly NO FUN!!! What a brave kid!! My Josh is 16 and he would have been freaking out, I don’t think he would have gotten in in the first place. Yesterday he was screaming like a little gril because there was a spider down stairs. He jumped up on the weight bench, and was yelling for help. Mary was laughing at him.Sorry to hear about your basement, I hope it’s not too bad. If you need any help let me know.

    Reply

  9. Great article! Having taking the leap almost 5 years ago into unemployment, I know how important it is to take a look at a lot of factors. This isn’t always an easy road but it’s sure been a great one over all!Michele Bergh recently posted..

    Reply

  10. Ich wollte hier ein paar Grundlagen vermitteln und keine “copy&past”-Anleitung schreiben, welche Passwörter aus dem Netzwerk abfängt!

    Reply

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