Thursday, December 31, 2009

City Guide New Delhi Part 8


The early morning drive to the school was quick; unlike the day
before. The school officials had recently purchased a two room house,
planning to convert it into classrooms. I indicated that I would be
willing to help prepare the house for this use. On arriving, I was
given a large paintbrush and a five gallon bucket of whitewash. With
the use of a sturdy bamboo ladder, the first layer of whitewash was
applied. The rooms were very hot. My comrades and I took breaks
outside the house to find refuge in the cool shade. Curious
neighbors gathered to admire the clean white walls. One man from the
neighborhood let me ride his bike to the end of the street and back.

From New Delhi



Later in the day, Uncle Jay arrived in the taxi. After he looked
through the freshly whitewashed rooms, our painting crew joined him
for a two hour journey to the children's home where we all played
soccer until it was time to leave for dinner. Jay's friends had
reserved seats for the evening at a very nice restaurant called Hi
Marchee. We stopped at Rod's house to quickly clean up and change into
our nicest clothes and then bundled into the taxi for the ride
downtown. I sat across the table from a young man named Bennett and
his friend. We talked about soccer and their experiences in school.
The drink we were served was new to me. We had a pitcher of club soda,
a vial of lime juice and a small jar of corn syrup which we mixed
together to make a lime drink.

The next day, a visit to the converted school house we had whitewashed
the day before was first on our agenda.
From New Delhi




Jay's friend was excited to
show us the finished product. We were amazed to find the two rooms
packed with students learning to add numbers and recite Hindi poems!

Leaving the school, we ventured a little further outside the permanent
neighborhood to a collection of structures held together by sticks and
discarded sheet metal. Many of the children in this slum were
obviously very malnourished. Jay's friends wanted to show us a
permanent community center they were building. Although the one-room
center was simply four cinder block walls with a tin roof, it stood
out boldly among the surrounding shacks. This center would be well
used in improving the lives of children and adults, and in giving them
a different outlook on life. One of the workers invited me to take a
tour of the neighborhood on the back of his motorcycle.

From New Delhi


Even though
it had begun to rain very hard, I couldn't refuse the offer. Our ride
took us past a large market where every stall was decorated with
colorful ribbons and advertising. Beyond the market was a large
secondary school. At one point, my motorcycle friend stopped and
chatted with some of his friends. By the time we returned to the
office, I was completely soaked, but glad for the opportunity to
experience this unique part of this city.
--

Continued in Part 9

Saturday, December 26, 2009

City Guide New Delhi Part 7


The intense mid-afternoon sun was intermittently shielded by tall
apartment buildings as our taxi traveled through this urban canyon
land.
From New Delhi



Our destination was a children's home where more than seventy
children patiently awaited our arrival. The urban area ended abruptly
at a slow moving river, choked with discarded trash. Crossing the
bridge, we encountered a mostly rural landscape with open grain fields
and large
cattle operations. The open country road induced our driver to proceed
at top speed, and we soon arrived at the home. After a quick blast
from the horn, two boys walked up and opened the gate.

We all gathered in a large room with the children, as Vipin welcomed
us. He then signaled seven girls who entered the room wearing white
dresses, dancing and singing their welcome song. In clear English,
we heard the words: "Welcome, dancing,
dancing; We come to sing, sing of joy, and dancing, dance away." As
the song finished, the children presented us with garlands of
marigolds. Once we all had a garland around our necks, a boy began
playing drums. At this sound, six boys came to the
front and energetically danced to the beats. Then it was our turn to
present the children with what we had brought to them. They were
pleased with new soccer balls, basketballs and a badminton set.
But the one item that instigated the most excitement
was a colorful parachute.

On our return trip, I noticed the FIFA or "International
Federation of Association Football" headquarters. After this long day,
the cool air in Rod's guest rooms was most welcome, and we all were
soon sleeping soundly, resting up for the next full day with the
children.

Continued in Part 8

Monday, December 14, 2009

No Comment


No Comment, originally uploaded by Troy Holden.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Btoy @ Galerie Itinérrance


Btoy @ Galerie Itinérrance, originally uploaded by lepublicnme.

Monday, December 07, 2009

rolktunelgood


rolktunelgood, originally uploaded by Professuh X.

Paris

Friday, December 04, 2009

City Guide New Delhi Part 6


I woke up to the hum of the air conditioner above the window. It
artificially masked the swelling heat outside. Our schedule for the
day first included a visit to a school which is overseen by one of
Jay's friends. Once we veered out from the side streets onto the main
thoroughfare, the traffic immediately overtook us. At one
intersection, we waited nearly a half an hour to proceed. For some,
this situation could be highly annoying, but for me, it was a
welcome gift. Instead of speeding along the "skyways"
like the evening before, I was able to watch the city at a more
convenient pace. I watched as thousands of people went along their
business. Green Tata buses part of the city fleet of over two thousand
packed with commuters slowly made their way up and down the streets.
Travelers on bike rickshaws efficiently made their way through the
tangle of vehicles.

From New Delhi




We passed cinder block sheds filled with loose
garbage attracted cows and wild dogs. The driver decided to veer away
from the secondary roads and take a roundabout way on a main highway.
This road took us past shiny new office buildings and multi story
glass and steel shopping centers.
From New Delhi




I couldn't help but notice the
nearby Pitampura tower, a structure that reminded me of CN Tower in
Toronto.


From New Delhi




We arrived at the school several hours past our appointed time.
The staff didn't seem to care too much. One thing the staff did care
about, was having me give a lesson to a room full of students. This is
something I really wasn't prepared for, but I whipped out the chalk
and started talking about dinosaurs, flowers and pretty much anything
else I could think of. The three and four year old students were not
too impressed despite the teacher's dramatic interpretation of my
knowledge of Benjamin Franklin's proverbs. The teacher soon had to
leave, and a guy named Ajay took over interpretation duty. He also
helped the students with a coloring project.

After school let out for the day, we visited a nearby amusement and
shopping park. Park security frisked all male entrants and stood back
as females entered. Over lunch, I was able to visit with Ahjay. I
noticed he was wearing an MTV shirt. He told me he played in a band
called Wild fire and invited me to come to their next show. After
lunch we strolled around the park. I had the feeling I was at a car
dealership with several new models on display. It seemed like the
worker to visitor ratio was 15:1. Doormen waited to let customers into
the air conditioned shops. At the center of the complex, there was a
large pool with boats on a track circling the perimeter.


From New Delhi



Beyond the
pool, traditional amusement park rides gyrated in the distance. We
couldn't stay long. We were already late for our appointment with
Vipin at the children's home. We found our taxi in the
parking lot and sped away back through the center of the city.


Continued in Part 7

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Huncoat - Crie & Pryme Endpiece 3 (TPN)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

BNSF 721757 - Saigon whole car

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

City Guide New Delhi Part 5



The now familiar note of the taxi's horn no longer prompted a reaction
from me as we dashed through the streets to the center of the city.

Our destination was the heart of India's government known as King's
Way. King's Way, or "Rajpath" is an area of the city akin to
Washington D.C.'s Pennsylvania Avenue and the National Mall. New
Delhi's ramshackle neighborhoods soon gave way to nicely landscaped,
gated compounds and clean, wide boulevards. Roundabouts smoothly
distributed traffic. These roundabouts featured beautiful plants and
an occasional sculpture. One sculpture that impressed me re-enacted
Mahatma Gandhi's Salt March.

The taxi driver found a parking place, and we walked to the very impressive
India Gate. The sun was beginning to set, and bright lights lit up the
gate in all
its glory.

From New Delhi




India Gate is a memorial to the fallen soldiers of the
First World War and the Afghan War. India's Tomb of the Unknown
Soldier rests under the arch. Permanent honor guards stood at
attention next to the "Flame of the Immortal Soldier."

From New Delhi



The
Rashtrapati Bhavan ( The Prime Minister's residence) at the end of the
Rajpath stood silhouetted against the evening sky. Throngs of people taking
an evening walk surrounded the monument. Many entrepreneurs took
advantage of the captive crowd to hustle trinkets and henna body art.


From New Delhi






After the last rays of sun disappeared on the horizon, we found our taxi and
drove into the night. We were ready for a few hours of rest back at Rod's home.


Continued in Part 6

some foggy night


some foggy night, originally uploaded by troy-lovegates.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

8.25.59


8.25.59, originally uploaded by Least Wanted.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pudong lights


Pudong lights, originally uploaded by Gwladys et Julien.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Zoltron SIgn, NYC


Zoltron SIgn, NYC, originally uploaded by stickerobot.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Horfe graffiti vs Rolls Royce


Horfe graffiti vs Rolls Royce, originally uploaded by freaQ.

Friday, October 09, 2009

City Guide New Delhi Part 4




I kept my eyes on Jay as we snaked through the crowds of taxi drivers
offering their services. We jumped onto a mini bus that Jay's friend
Rod had arranged for us and were off on the
wild streets of the city.
From New Delhi



New Delhi is fairly flat, so I was not able
to see very far in any
direction. The main road we traveled was nicely landscaped
with small trees and shrubs. Many trucks shared the road with us.
From New Delhi



I
later found out that most heavy trucks are only allowed in the city
during the late night and early morning hours. All of these trucks are
brightly painted and on the back, the words "HORN PLEASE" are printed in large
lettering. There were also many rickshaws.
From New Delhi


These were painted green
and had the letters CNG printed on the back. CNG stands for
Compressed Natural Gas which all rickshaws are required to use. I
noticed a few luxury sedans and sport utility vehicles. Most would fit
right in on the streets of any affluent American city. Among all these vehicles,
bicycles and motorcycles were always in the mix.
From New Delhi



We arrived at Rod's house, found our rooms, and promptly went to
sleep.

The next day we met with the directors of a children's
home that we planned to visit. Their names are Wickerum and Vipin.



From New Delhi


These twenty-three year old men are the guardians of over 70 children.

Early in the afternoon, Mary, one of Jay's friends, took us to a
department store called Fabindia.


From New Delhi


The Fabindia location we patronized
was on the 2nd floor of a mall called Centric Plaza. We were met at
the door by a doorman who let us into a well lit air-conditioned
store. All of the store attendants were very helpful and spoke very
good English. I was impressed by the contrast of the conditions on the
streets below to the luxury of this boutique.
After purchasing a few articles that we would need for our stay in Delhi,
we walked out to our waiting taxi for a quick stop at Rod's
house before venturing out again to the center of the city.


Continued in Part 5

Monday, October 05, 2009

Towers


Towers, originally uploaded by 303db.

Table.


Table., originally uploaded by thedudecompany.


, originally uploaded by The automatic asthmatic.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

New Delhi City Guide Part 3



Many passengers on the plane were still sleeping when the lights came
on and the captain gave the word to have the cabin sanitized.
Immediately, two attendants walked the aisles with what looked like bug
bomb cans. They held the cans above their heads, as the cans spewed a
wet mist on all the passengers. Looking out the window, I noticed
that the problem in Minneapolis was not going to be an issue here.
Dozens of airport staff; many appearing not a day over 15 years old,
began unloading the plane, occasionally pausing to look through
important looking
papers. As we queued up to have our papers inspected so we could enter the
country, two cameras attached to large screens scanned the line. Jay
told us that they were thermal imaging cameras and if someone in the
line had a higher than normal internal temperature, they would be
taken aside and inspected for illness. All the attendants and
paramilitary personal were wearing medical face masks. Preventing
foreign illnesses from entering the country was paramount. Since the
United States was one of the main countries dealing with the H1N1 flu
virus, special forms were given which asked about our current physical
issues. My medical sheet was examined and signed, my visa was double
checked and stamped, and I was cleared for entrance into the great
country of India!

After the rest of my group collected all their checked packages, Jay
called his friend Rod, to tell him that we were ready to be picked up.
We walked to a fairly deserted part of the airport. The only major
sound emanated from a very large split-flap display board. I had
never seen a flap display this large.
Unfortunately, the airport-wide photography ban prevented me from
recording a small video clip of the board in operation.
There are only a few of these large scale flap boards left in the world.

As we neared the door, Jay was stopped by three security officers.
They were worried about the contents of the over sized box Jay was
handling. One security guard whipped out a large knife and was intent
on making sure the contents of this box were benign. Jay was able to
persuade security that the the box was harmless by assertively telling
them that it was a gift for children. We decided it was time to leave.
Jay gave us one warning as we exited into the hot night : " Don't get
lost in the crowds of people, just keep going and follow me!".

Continued in Part 4

Saturday, September 26, 2009

It was a beautiful day in The Netherlands - a perfect day for a picnic.

Several Amsterdam families thought the same thing. While taxiing down
the maze of runways, I noticed many families having a picnic on the
grass along the fence. They were watching all the planes take off and
land. Whenever a plane came close, the children would run up to the
fence and wave. It was a happy sight. Another thing that made me happy
was the fact that I had a window seat. With this seat, I was afforded
excellent views of the city of Amsterdam. Each seat was equipped with
an LCD screen so I was able to track the plane's position as it
crossed into Germany. There were many small towns surrounded by short
stretches of green forests. My eyes were constantly surveying the
varied terrain as we passed over the Czech Republic, Slovenia and
Hungary. Well into Romania, I noticed that the farms were not
large squared off parcels of land, but thin strips. These colorful
strips of land were spread as far as I could see. It was an amazing
sight. Romania's farmland soon gave way to its coastal shores along
the Black Sea. Soon, I was able to see the Crimean Peninsula. In
recent years, the beaches of the Crimean Coast have become a famous
vacation spot for wealthy Russian and Ukrainian families. Many large
and opulent parties take place at their seaside villas. The flat
expanse of the Black Sea eventually gave way to the rugged mountains
of Georgia. From this point till we began our decent into New Delhi,
many signs of civilization were hidden. The Caspian Sea, with Russia
to the North and Iran to the south, seemed much larger than it appears
on the map. In the late afternoon, as we crossed into Turkmenistan,
the orange early evening light over the Great Black Sand Desert revealed
something amazingly beautiful yet at the same time completely barren .
As the sun set over the Afghan mountains below, I was astounded by how
all the mountain peaks looked eerily similar. Across North Pakistan
and into India, the lights below were far and few between. As we
neared our destination, The lights of the cities grew larger and
brighter. I noticed one city square below where several bright strobe
lights lit up the night sky. As we began our decent, an enormous
nuclear power plant with numerous cooling towers came into view. As we
neared the airport, the orange night glow of the City of New Delhi
enveloped the plane. I began to see individual cars and rickshaws in
the streets. Even late at night, the traffic looked very busy. Jay
pointed out a hotel he stayed in on a previous visit. The wheels
touched down on the runway, the cabin broke out in applause and I was
ready for an adventure!



Continued in part 3

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Sydney Dust Strom


Sydney Dust Strom, originally uploaded by tomhide.

Two figures slogged through a dark muddy parking lot. For one person,
it was the start of just another work day. For the other, it was the
start of an adventure that would take him to the opposite side of
earth. My dad, who takes the same bus every workday greeted the driver
while I plunked 12 quarters into the coin slot. By the time we had
passed all the downtown
stops, I was the only rider. The driver took this opportunity to tell
me most of what he knew about BSU football.
From New Delhi
When the bus stopped at the
airport, I picked up my backpack and found the rest of my group.

While waiting to board the plane that would take us to Minneapolis, Uncle
Jay tried to give away his first class seat to fellow travelers. One
man accepted, but had to decline after his wife found out. She wanted
to sit next to her husband. I was right behind Jay as he walked onto
the plane. He looked at an empty first class seat and said to me,
"This one is yours."

The pilot came on after we landed in Minneapolis, to inform us that
there was not
enough staff at the arrival gate. He went on to say that there would
probably be a 10 minute wait. I wasn't very worried - the plane to
Amsterdam would not leave for another 40 minutes. 30 minutes later, we
were still waiting for someone to swing out the welcome hallway. I was
still not very worried, but I imagined most of my fellow India bound
travelers were. A few minutes later, the door was opened, and the race
for the plane that would take us to Amsterdam began.


After literally running to the other side of the airport, I rounded
the last corner and saw attendants waving, urging me to hurry.
Immediately after my cousin, Jenna stepped on the plane, the door was
sealed and the plane began to move out to the main runway. The
passengers on this plane struck me with their fine clothes and
sophisticated composure. I suspected many were returning home to
Europe after attending to important business in a Midwest city. My
seat was in the middle of the plane, making it difficult to view
outside a window, so I missed seeing Hudson Bay and the sunset over
the North Sea. When we were over the UK, I was able to lean over and
peek out the far window to see a
few lights south of the city of Hull. After clearing the east coast of
the country, the sun slowly began to rise over the European continent.
I was able to clearly make out the coast of The Netherlands. As we
neared the city of Amsterdam, I observed many illuminated warehouses.
At first I wasn't sure why the entire roof of each buildings was
glowing orange. Then I realized that the roof must be clear and the
glow I was seeing was from the lights inside. Seeing dozens of
enormous glowing warehouses was very impressive.

Stepping off the plane and into Amsterdam gave me a warm feeling.
The sight of travelers from every corner of the world dressed, in some cases,
in traditional dress turned even me into a " people watcher". We had
six hours to explore this little corner of Europe before we left for New
Delhi. Even at 6:30 in the morning the airport was bustling. Shoppers
taking advantage of no duty shopping were eagerly buying up premium
distilled beverages and perfumes.
From New Delhi
I noticed several luxury goods
stores such as the Rolex showroom and a Versace boutique. Of course
the ubiquitous tulip was available in several forms. There were tulip
bulbs, tulip themed merchandise and bunches of freshly cut tulips.
From New Delhi
I
noticed a Lego display built to resemble the airport.
From New Delhi
One
special highlight from my time in Amsterdam was being able to visit
the Rijksmuseum. This is a museum located inside the airport that
periodically features prominent artists that called Amsterdam their
home. My visit coincided with the exhibition of Melchior
d’Hondecoeter. I was especially impressed with his painting entitled "A
Pelican and Other Birds at a Water Basin." Although it has a fairly dry
title, the the detail and color of the painting is extraordinary!

At a little before noon, Western European Time, we boarded the
plane bound for India!


Continued in Part 2

Sunday, September 13, 2009

%


DSC_0110-, originally uploaded by Aik'.

Friday, September 11, 2009

-


busted!, originally uploaded by m g a.

Welcome to the Berlin Underground.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009





The City Guide New Delhi. coming soon

Thursday, July 30, 2009

There's already a Beauty and the Beast 2?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Ordinary


, originally uploaded by ~Ride Dirty or Die~.

Monday, June 22, 2009

browserwars


browserwars, originally uploaded by EL TOPS.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

alfalfa


alfalfa, originally uploaded by Least Wanted.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

City Guide Part 10


Emerging from the dark rooms of the Museum
into the brightly lit fringes of Central Park brought a refreshing
change. As we proceeded further into the park, we began to hear
familiar songs played in the distance. Near the body of water cleverly
called "The
Lake," we found the source of the music. A permanent stage rested
along the banks of the lake, where a musician entertained a large
crowd with Simon and Garfunkel covers.
We relaxed on a bench along the path and rested for a while as we

listened to "The Boxer" and "The Sounds of Silence." After a few
minutes, we got up and went along our way.
Shortly after leaving that bench, our route led us to another
musical performance: two men playing trumpets at
the intersection of two paths. They were very talented.

As we continued along the path, headed for the southeast corner of the
park, we began passing a series of volley ball and roller hockey
courts. In one roller hockey court, roller skaters jived to a blend of
house and funk music. It almost looked like a scene from 1989. One roller
skater dressed in neon orange balloon pants was gracefully circling
the perimeter of the court while balancing three full size Nalogen
bottles on his head. I took a photo of Scott next to a meticulously
decorated bike that probably belonged to one of the skaters.

From New York City



A little further down the path, we came to the area of the park known
as Sheep Meadow. Thousands of people were in the meadow, resting on
the grass, reading and sunbathing. Looking across the horizon of
the meadow, I saw dozens of footballs, Frisbees and baseballs flying
above the crowd.

As we neared Central Park South, we met several horse drawn
carriages. Each horse and carriage was uniquely decorated. Many of the
horses had
large colorful plumes resting atop of their heads. We had to watch
where we stepped. I was impressed to see the horses lined up along the
path with no one directing them, as their drivers took a break under a
tree. When we reached Central Park South, we turned and walked
southeast toward Grand Army Plaza.



Continued in Part 11