Thursday, November 24, 2011

La Fiera di Pushkar..

So much to share about Pushkar, it spills over into a second post..
Food, people, costume, faith, rituals, tolerance, an intact culture and the hippy-ness of settlers from other lands. Temple bells & Bob Marley juxtaposed; apple crumble, tarts & cakes on a cart; Dali & Kikasso, India's Picasso, the chutzpah.

Gal watching! 
This handsome Rajasthani was soaking in the sun & getting an eyeful of damsels passing by! Blissfully unaware till someone nudged him, 'settle your whiskers, you're being clicked.'

There's something alike in the man & his beast; can't say what but I felt the men even walked like camels & they were as unflappable.

Scientific/comfortable Indian clothing (I like how it contrasts with the next picture)

I don't know if this gets you between the eyes, those pants, they were   b-l-i-n-d-i-n-g. Daring, I'd say, but then who's afraid of color in India!

Food for everyone! Like I said, the sense of sharing was a lesson for us city folk.

Ram Ram sa! Ram Ram sa! they chanted as they circumambulated the town until the swollen moon shone bright.

I used to work with an Italian design house crazy about 'fluo' colors, they could never quite get enough of 'fluo'; this would be their 'fluo' paradiso!

The urban encroach dilutes the style they know best.

'Behroopiya Dusroopiya'
You've got to pay to photograph this little costume artist for his painstaking Shiva avatar!

Tea in traditional clay cups (kulhar); frugal pleasures of Indian chai!

The sun sets on the cattle fair!

Monday, November 14, 2011


The Pushkar mela was on my list of must visits for years .. am I glad I finally made it.
It's the India of angrez books and tourists, something we choose to wave off in dismissal. When a firang remarks about the snake charmers, camels, cattle, dust, color, dirt, crowds, sadhus, bathing in the holy waters, I'd look at them like they'd grown two heads. But hey, it's all here!
We are probably as droll to the locals at the fair as they seem to us. Indians from metros are considered as phoren as foreigners by the village folk.

There's much to observe in the face & demeanour, stories & character etched out; of endurance, patience, of giving, calm, distress maybe, hardship and an honest living. I noticed a lot of giving & sharing (the poor giving alms) and and some taking too (touts), it seemed to balance & come full circle in subtle ways.

The Rajasthani  persona is oh-so perfectly chiseled; poise and simple perfection, I'd sit and gaze for hours; entertaining too for the surprises their guises sprang as I sat & watched from the chaiwalla's. And this chaiwalla was a piece of work, he'd make fancy ginger-honey-lemon tea for foreign visitors & shoo away the locals unceremoniously. I didn't care for him but his shop offered a vantage point to people-watch.

 Nihang Sikhs (Punjab)


--- Its a photographer's paradise.. and the COLOR can send you reeling.