Sunday, June 27, 2010

Darjeeling





The Tung railway station between Darjeeling and Kurseong. It is at a height of about 3500 feet. The railway station is just a small office on the roadside beside the residences of ordinary people.





Every signboard in the Darjeeling Hills carries the name Gorkhaland, though Gorkhaland is yet to become a political reality.








A view of the toy train.









One of the many charming life-like stuffed creatures in the Natural History Museum in Darjeeling.








The Kanchenjunga Peak - two views.








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Friday, June 25, 2010

The Gift of Kupup - 2 (Bunker Mandir)

The bed of God Harbhajan Singh in the Mandir dedicated to him at Kupup, 16000 feet high on the Himalayas.
Gangtok - Kupup: 60 km. But that road is closed right now. Take a 130 km stretch from Gangtok by a private tour operator and voila you're there at the Mandir which fulfils all your wishes!



This is supposed to be the room used by God Harbhajan Singh! Quite a few decades ago.

There are quite a few army trucks making their way up and down the 32 hairpin bends almost every day. Any day one of them could have transported a swivel chair.




A cell in the Bunker Mandir, also known as Baba Mandir.






The entrance to the Bunker Mandir.

The Gift of Kupup - 1





The road to Kupup - with its 32 hairpin bends which our co-driver was keen on counting at every bend.
Tourism is the chief, perhaps the only, industry in Sikkim.



A yak with its calf. Our driver was very keen that we shoot the calf. "Shaitan [satan - mischief incarnate]" he said, "that's what the calf is."






The hamlet of people living at an altitude of 16000 feet from sea level.
Is ordinary Indian life any worse than life in the Indian Army?
If you see the Indian Army's quarters in Kupup you'll think it's better to join the Army.
Indeed, that's whay the Indian Army has a huge human strength.





The bunkers on the frontier.
This frontier right now is accesible for tourism.
If China attacks India, it may be a different story.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Flowers of Gangtok

Below is a handful of snaps selected from the two dozen that my camera captured from the perennial flower show in Gangtok.






























For the text related to my travels in Sikkim, please log on to: www.matheikal.wordpress.com

The Spirit of Ban Jhakri


The Ban Jhakri waterfalls


Below are some scenes from Ban Jhakri Park.
The initiation of a boy by Ban Jhakri



A fisherman below the waterfall [statue]







Ban Jhakri heals a sick person






The ropeway in Gangtok







The Bakthang Falls




A view of the M.G. Marg, Gangtok



For the text on these places, please log on to: http://www.matheikal.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Spirit of Sikkim - 2. Chorten





Do-Drul Chorten, or the Stupa, encircled by 108 prayer wheels.










The prayer wheels around Chorten
Namgyal Institute of Tibetology, adjacent to the Chorten
For the full text on my Sikkim travel, please log on to: http://matheikal.wordpress.com

The Spirit of Sikkim - 1. Highway to Monasteries


A view of the National Highway from Siliguri to Gangtok. The day we travelled it was congested due to a landslide. Landslides are quite common on this highway which is considerably narrow in most places.




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Another view of the Highway, taken from the cabin of the ropeway in Gangtok.













The Rumtek monastery












The Lingdum monastery












Little monks being instructed at the Lingdum monastery







For the full text on my Gangtok travel, please log on to: http://matheikal.wordpress.com