INDIA, Jan. 2009

= JAIPUR to AGRA=

Photos © Ruud Leeuw

Our very first visit to India... At the airport of New Delhi we were met by a chauffeur and he drove us through Rajasthan. He also drove us from Jaipur to Agra, crossing the border from Rajasthan into Uttar Pradesh.

Click on the thumbnail images to view a larger image

indian roadside

Having spent the last week or so in dryer climes of Rajasthan, we now noticed that the world was becomeing greener as we headed for Agra. Our trusty Vinod was again at the wheel.
We noticed how large tracts of highways were in place but as yet did not connect everywhere. Toll booths were also being built. I rather like to be driven on these rural roads as there is so much to see and enjoy.
Above scene, men washing at the waterpump and the abundant greenery, reminded me of the tales my father told me of his youth which was spent in Indonesia.

 

indian roadside
This is of course also part of the third world, a less picturesque side of life

 

indian roadside
I have even seen motorcycles with five people on them!

indian roadside
I had not seen them before, but now I noticed these strange vehicles in abundance in these parts.

indian roadside

indian roadside
The variety of transport is immense. But why is that guy walking?

indian roadside
Just a camel..
Indian roadside
..and just a village!

Indian roadside
For those who view this at home, on a nice pc, with a broadband internet connection, please realize how privileged we are!

Indian roadside

India is a huge and diverse country with a population of more than one billion people and an incredible diversity of wealth, religion, language, customs, art, cuisine and landscape. There are vast divides between rich and poor with nearly 30% of the population living in poverty. People from the lowest Hindu caste, known as dalits, women, the elderly and disabled make up the largest proportion of poor people. Population growth is rapid, particularly in urban areas due to migration from rural villages.

Indian roadside
In a country so large, there are vast numbers without sanitation and water. For every 1000 children, 87 die before their fifth birthday, mostly from preventable diseases like diarrhoea. Just 15% of the rural population has access to a toilet

 

We stopped at a restaurant for lunch as it was again quite a drive to get from Jaipur to Agra.
These restaurant were expensive and clearly catered for the tourists. They had souvenirs for sale too, at overcharged rates.
Going to the bathroom was ok here, it was clean. But there was always someone waiting for you when you washed your hands, he would offer you a paper napkin to dry your hands (useless, as they would break up in little sticky pieces with so much water) and expect a few rupees in return. It becomes quite task to have sufficient small change for the tips and 'baksheesh'.

Indian roadside

 

Stone factories in Rajasthan
 Indian roadside
We passed through an area where we saw a concentration of brick factories; bricks as far as you could see!

Indian roadside
Actually, I did not take this photo for the abandoned (?) dwelling but rather for those round 'pancakes' on top, left to dry. They are made from dung, straw and mud and I have seen them used as buidling material.

 

Indian roadside
I think these women are mixing mud and cow dung to make those 'pancake bricks'.

 

Indian roadside

Indian roadside

 

Indian roadside

More 'transporation' photos

 

Indian roads

 

Indian roadside This is the photo I am most pleased with, of the entire trip! An innocent, domestic scene: mama is making herself pretty and grandma seems to be the target of a protesting child. That is my explanation, anyway.

Indian roadside

Indian roads

Indian roadside

Indian roadside

 

Indian roadside

 

 

Indian roadside
At this point we crossed the border, going from Rajasthan into Uttar Pradesh. Our driver had to pay some taxes. Meanwhile, people try to sell you something or stick a monkey in your face and ask for money...
Indian roadside

 

Indian roadside
You will appreciate I felt myself travelling in Medieval times, when I looked outside at carts like this.

 

Indian roadside
Indian roadside

 

Indian roadside
The women in their colourful, immaculate dresses certainly are the flowers in this often drab and lackluster country.

JAIPUR BACK   |   NEXT AGRA

Helpful links:
Indiaonline.nl (Dutch)
www.india-tourism.com
www.bharatonline.com
Lonely Planet
Wikipedia