Trip to Paharpur. Day 1

Paharpur is one of the main sights in Bangladesh, the ruins of what was once a buddhist temple. You have seen one of those in Comilla already, but this is the biggest one.

Even though it was supposed to be a 4-5 hour drive, because we happened to go on the same day, what the Indian prime-minister was visiting Bangladesh, the National monument (the one I showed before as well) to be precise, which is in the same direction, it took us 12 hours. It was bad. Very bad.

We got to enjoy a lot of bush art though when we got there.

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Kinds get to learn the “picture with the bush” skill when they are very small.

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I am trying hard too

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The ruins are cool

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People are manually cutting off the grass with little knives.

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The light at the ruins was absolutely gorgeous, but still iPhone made everybody look different!

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We are performing

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The layer on top in new, put there to protect the left overs from further destruction IMG_6825

Guess whom I met there?!

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Views

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More goats

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More bush-pictures

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The area where Paharpur is situated, Rajshahi district, is famous for its mangoes. Therefore here is the biggest part of our dinner — mangoes and lychees.

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To be continued!

Henna

Ever since I came here I wanted to try henna. One day the bride (and now a wife) from the wedding I showed you before did a great job making both of my hands beautiful with mehndi (what the locals call it)

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It took about 20 minutes per hand for her, but then it takes a while to dry.

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Henna stays longer on the areas, where the skin in thicker, so it was gone very fast on the outside part of the hands, but on the palms you can still see a bit even after almost 3 weeks.

Will do it again for sure 😉

Pink pearls

It is being said that Bangladesh is famous for its pearls, especially pink pearls.

There are multiple stores that sell them, and some argue that they are Chinese, not Bangladeshi, but who would know? They are real for sure and soooo pretty (and cheap).

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A talking bird

In my tailor’s backyard there are two cages with moyna. These birds are amazing. They can reproduce almost whatever you tell them and in general the range of the sounds they can make it very impressive. And they are very pretty as well!

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Happens sometimes

Beautiful Dhaka

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Kolkata. Day 4

Like I mentioned before, I stayed at a beautiful house with a very hospitable family.

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They even had they own little temple and every mornings the mother would make a pray, and for the evening pray the priest would come over.

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On the way to one of the palaces we had a typical Kolkata snack — jhaal muri, which looks like puffed rice with some spices, but in fact has about 20 ingredients. I like Indian cuisine :)

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The Marble Palace was recommended by many, so I went to check it out with some members of the family I stayed with. It is free to visit it, but one should first get a permission from Indian tourism agency. If you want to avoid the hassle, you can just give some cash to the guys by the entrance (you will need to tip them at the end of your visit anyways).

There is not much special inside if you have been to other palaces/museums. The difference is that all the treasures they have are kept in the non-ac conditions which makes everything alter faster.

And again, no pictures were allowed, but I hate this rule.

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The family I stayed with is supporting a school for slum kids. After the classes of the main school the slum kinds come in and have their own. They are provided with the uniform and everything else needed. It is a private school, but for the slum kids it is of course free. I was invited to visit the school and it was a very intresting experience.

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The school is huge. This is just one side. In total there are about 8000 pupils (if I remember it correctly).

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Every day children have a different routine. I didn’t understand if the performance we saw was specially for us or it was a regular thing, but it was impressive.

Firstly, there are many kind and some af them are as young as 4 years old. In the beginning they did some playing, after sang a national anthem and some other song and afterwards they did some yoga! 4 year old kids! Yoga!

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In the school we had a snack and walked around a bit

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The schedule of one of the classes (not for slum kids, they have a different program)

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On the way to the airport I managed to take a picture of what you can spot on many streets in Kolkata — people bathing on the streets.

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The airport building is quite new, but a bit deserted. You can see planes’ houses though!

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Oh India, so full of contrasts and tastes!

Kolkata. Day 3

This day I started with a walking tour. Welcome to the holy river and a long hanging bridge. Once you get on it you can actually feel how it is going up and down.

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Right next to the bridge is the flower market. Flowers are used daily for religious purposes and therefore people buy them by weight.

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There is a train station on the other side of the river and many people from around Kolkata are coming to the city every morning to bring their goods for sell.

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Overall, Kolkata still has many beautiful old buildings. For example, this is one of a few synagoges.

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Dinner was at a very nice restaurant called Yauatcha and it was sooo tasty and surprisingly affordable (for a Michelin star restaurant as it claims to be)

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Kolkata. Day 2

Second day in Kolkata started with some cookies (after great breakfast ;)). Unfortunately, as it usually happens to me in this part of the world (so far), sweets look great but don’t really taste like it…

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Need a job? There are quite a few in Saudi Arabia

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Indian children are running to school

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Goats in India and veeeery big. And like hanging out in the middle of the streets as well

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The main tourist attraction of that day was the Mother’s House, meaning the Mother Teresa’s house. Not much there, just many people (mostly white) feeling extatic around her grave.

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Like many white people.

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A lot.

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Wondering around is usually the best part, so he is that  Canadian guy in the middle of Kolkata

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Hand-pulled rickshaws are still working in Kolkata, and it is just so weird.

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Need to get your nails done? Anybody?

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London’s tower bridge on a rickshaw? Easy

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Buddy

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That was surprising

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Just a funny restaurant sign

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On one of the main streets I saw McDonalds. Only got to take this picture and was told that I am not allowed to take any pictures of the counter. What is this no-pictures-desease in India?

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After that I took a metro to one of the temples. Again no pictures as you can imagine (stupid!!), but here is a token :)

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