Category Archives: FaunaScapes
This is the joy of travel – you end up being in places that you least expect to be in and it is a wonderful feeling. The people of Aswan were in general more friendly than those we have encountered elsewhere. It was a great day yesterday – and our last night on board the Oberoi Philae.
We were supposed to take a fellucca (traditional sail boats) ride on the Nile this morning, but the wind has almost died down – we can see a whole bunch of felluccas in the middle of the river, waiting to be towed away to the shore. Instead we find ourselves on a motorboat crossing the Nile to the beautiful Aswan botanical gardens.
We roam around the bazaars some more – and check into the Movenpick Hotel at the Elephantine Island. The hotel is accessible only on a boat and the swimming pool and the ambiance provides us with a much needed relaxation. Tomorrow we fly back to Cairo and then to Delhi.Tags: aga khan, aswan, egypt, EgyptianScapes, elephantine island, FaunaScapes, fellucca, sand art, tomb
After the enchanting Temple of Edfu, we sail again to another temple – the temple of Kom Ombo.
The Kom Ombo temple is an unusual one in the history of Egypt – it is the only temple that is dedicated to two gods – the southern part for the crocodile god and the northern part to another goddess. The temple is perfectly symmetrical along its central dividing line and every detail on the two halves is matched meticulously – so that none of the gods is superior to the other. The temple is well preserved too and more than 300 crocodile mummies were excavated from the site.
Crocodile was also regarded as the god of fertility and life – and the temple bears engravings that reflect the healthcare available during the time. This scene shown below is of a nurse on the left and a druid giving a potent medication to a patient. This could also be interpreted as an ancient hospital process. It is a fascinating tale of medical evolution.
At the Oberoi Philae, tonight is billed as the “Galabiya Party” where guests on board are expected to dress up like an Egyptian, and party into the night. There is a small market between the temple and docks – just parallel to the river and we venture out to shop. We have been warned that bargaining is the key to a good price. As we roam around, we find that the locals here are not as friendly – two women from our group were manhandled. I realize that the economy of the region depends on tourists buying stuff and trinkets from them, so they may not like to bargain, but to be rude and misbehaving with women, is surely not the best way to attract a sustainable tourist culture.
Back at the ship, we do have a good time at the galabiya party. They have organized some games, and we find ourselves winning the first 3 of them in a row – so we take a break and let the others continue. After a tiring night, all we need is a good karkaday and we are all happy to call it a night.Tags: CulturalScapes, egypt, EgyptianScapes, FaunaScapes, kom ombo, nile, sailing
The Redwood trees in Northern Califonia. Up in hte Mendocino county are the famous Redwoods – Sequoias actually. These are the tallest of the trees — somthing like a 200 footer is not unheard of, and may live for 2000 year! Thats a long time I say. And yes, the dont grow from seeds, rather from layering and sprouting from the root crown. If a tree falls over, it sprouts more trees along its trunk.
This picture taken in the forests off Fort Bragg, CA, when mounted on top of the Skunk Train that runs through the reds.
I was on my way to the Angel Island this weekend. These shots were taken aboard the short 30 minute ferry ride from San Francisco.
I love how the seagulls drift in the winds, without fluttering their feathers unnecessarily, slowly gliding along and then a sudden dive for food! Just love the freedom these shots embody! The city of San Francisco can be seen in the background in the first shot!
Tags: angel island, california, fauna, FaunaScapes, Landscapes, seagulls, sky
It is my last day in Ladakh. It makes me sad that my memory system remembers this fact, when it could have other more important things to take care of. But it is a resolve to come back again, perhaps sooner than later , and to soak myself in this experience all over again.
As I head back to Leh, I try to capture almost everything that I can see through to the lens. Even though Ladakh is a photographer’s heaven, it does not translate so in the pictures that I take now. Take this shot on the right as an example….On the surface, it looks OK to me, but I sense something is missing. It does not attach itself to me through an emotional cord, as do some of my other pictures. I guess, you have to very intimately know the scene (in Ladakh) that you want to capture and that comes from the heart. As this realization ticks in, I give up and just try to enjoy myself under the open skies and the clean air. Here’s a shot without which a mention of Ladakh is perhaps incomplete! Until next time I venture into Ladakh….SoLong!!
Tomorrow, I fly back to Delhi.
Ever wondered how animals and birds live together in an ecosystem – sure there are omnivores and carnivores, but there is a symbiotic relationship that comes naturally to animals. Humans may perhaps one day learn from this.Tags: animal, bird, chennai, cow, crow, FaunaScapes, india, mahabalipuram, nature