Tuesday, January 29, 2013


We got in the tour bus early today, 7:30. We had a fairly long ride to Agra with stops along the way. The smog was still bad, so I had on a mask most of the day.
We are driving through an agricultural area, A woman's job here is to collect moist cow dung and pat it into a nice circle, The dung patty is then dried, sold and used for cooking fires.

Small family farms grow wheat, mustard and vegetables.

Mustard is grown for seeds and cooking oil. The stick house is used to protect dung patty fuel in the rainy season.

Cows, water buffalo and goats are herded across the road.  The Hindus eat no meat. They revere the cow and just use the milk from these animals. We see wild pigs at the roadside. No one eats these.

Road side shops.

This huge statue is an incarnation of Shiva's consort Paverti. There are hundreds of Hindu gods and it is hard for me to figure out who is who.

Hare Hare Krishna Hare Rama. We had a marvelous lunch here at the Krishna temple. The Krishnas are currently providing  a hot lunch to 1.3 million children in government schools, attended mostly by poor children, all financed by private donations. This temple serves all in a 50 mile radius.

A Sikh temple

A lovely traffic jam in Agra. The policeman only seemed to be making it worse.

An Agra letter box looks like an English one.
The Agra fort

Hindu filigree by Hindu workmen in this Muslim fort.

Over my shoulder you can kind of see the Taj Mahal through the haze.

Workmen cleaning the marble

A closeup through the viewfinder of the Taj

The Agra fort moat, missing the original crocodiles.

Ceilings in the King's quarters

Originally there were jewels and fancy inlays in these places on the walls.

A hint of gold along the roofline
Semi precious stones combined in these inlays.
Tomorrow we tour the Taj and then head to Jaipur.

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