I believe another expatriate colleague in Chennai recommended the Andaman (and Nicobar) Islands to me. After my Christmas home visit in 2008-2009 I had a few days spare and got going. I had a most relaxing and re-energizing time and will be back some time in the future.
We flew from Chennai to Jaipur in Rajasthan and our driver Rajan drove our car up there. The journey took us to the following destinations:
Jaipur – Ranthambhore – Pushkar – Jodhpur – Jaisalmer – Udaipur – Mumbai
and we were on the road for 12 days.
My wife Ingrid and I went to Agra to visit the Taj Mahal and to find out whether it is living up to its image.
Four thoughts on the journey:
- We have seen so many photos and footage of the Taj which created a vivid imagination.
- Again we experienced Mark Twain: “We travel to compare our imagination to reality”.
- I will never forget my emotions on the first view through the big entrance gate: just literally breathtaking and astonishing.
- No picture, no video can provide this emotions.
I went to India in 2006 for BMW to be part of a project team which established a new CKD plant in Chennai. The contracts are usually for 3 years and we managed the start up and stabilisation process quite well. To live in India is a story on its own of course and one summary is: ” A feast for the eyes but a punishment for the nose.” As many other developing countries there are unbelievable contrasts and contradictions all over.
When we drove from home near the coastline of southern Chennai to Chengalpet further inland it was a time-travel par excellence. Rural villages with oxen wagen changed with posh glass towers hosting IT companies or call centers from organisations overseas.
An attempt of a summary of that experience is, we were privileged to work with excellent local staff, met wonderful friends, traveled to very beautiful destinations and also saw extreme poverty and suffering. Most impressive was to observe a willingness to study, an eagerness to work hard and smart and a drive to success relentlessly.
I just post some episodes of traveling in India without too many comments as it is now 15 years back. I have hope, the images contribute to the theme of this website: Time-Travel.net.
Kerala is well known for its provincial government being Communist since many decades. They managed that all 3 main religious groups (Hindu, Moslem, Christian) live in “perfect” harmony and they achieve the highest percentage of literacy all over India with about 95%.
It was only a short visit of a view days and we spent most of the time on a houseboat roaming through the water channels in-between large rice plantations.
When I took the photos of the fisherman operating the large nets on levers they invited me to join and help them. So I did and quickly got blisters on my hands. Afterwards they asked for a baksheesh for my pleasure.