Monday, December 13, 2010

India Episode #2

Ok,so far I've detailed up to Pushkar. What an amazing place! The fair is divided into 3 sections, horses, cattle, and camels.

We pulled up to the edge of the fair grounds a little too early for our hotel to be ready for us. Instead our local guides met us there and we walked through to the Pushkar Fort where we were to lodge in tents. Yes, I camped in India. Now, when I say we walked, weeeelllll, it was more like a hike through the desert. The road ended and we had to follow a little trail past homes made of sticks and small herds of goats. Finally we arrived to our "luxurious" tents.

We spent the next couple of days shooting a few models and the sights at the fair. Here is where I did the series on "Faces of India"

This is also the place where I had the worst experience of the whole trip. A fellow photographer flipped out on me and actually, physically assaulted me. I was stunned! As an adult I've never had a man put his hands on me in an aggressive manner. I've always said I'd hit the idiot back if a guy stepped out of line but I was on a moving camel cart and shocked. We rolled on and left that jerk, Adam, standing with his own group and that should have been it. Ya, no. I had a delayed reaction. I started bawling!! How embarrassing. I was so upset that I told the group I was going back to our rooms and jumped off the cart. I started marching through the herds of camels bawling like a baby. The guide caught up with me and told me I had to return that I didn't know the way. I knew exactly where I was going but he was worried for a blond woman walking alone among the tribes. I just kept crying and telling him no. Well, a woman crying in public in India is a very bad thing. I was drawing a crowd. Not pretty. I reluctantly went back to the group and I'm glad I did. I would have missed out on some fantastic shots. Besides, why should that moron ruin my opportunity? Thankfully, Adam Kazmierski, the abuser, was leaving that afternoon. It wasn't only me he had attacked either. He shoved Karen's camera right into her nose. Unbelievable behavior!!
From Pushkar we then travelled a full day on the horrid bus to Agra. It took us almost 12hrs to go 378km (236 miles). We only stopped for food and potty breaks. The speed limits are not the same and the traffic was abysmal. Just before Agra we stopped to see Fathehpur Sikri, a beautiful monument encompassing Indian, Persian, and Islamic architecture. It was a smoky day so the shots didn't turn out like I had hoped but you'll get the idea.

From there we found our hotel amid a massive downpour and hunkered down for the night. We left for the Taj at 6:30am. We wanted to be some of the first in so we could shoot without the crowds and get the good light. We were lucky. All though we were so early we had to wait in a line at least a block long. Surprisingly the security was intense. I got a full blown pat down. They missed nothing. Glad it was a woman doing the searching.

From here we traveled on to New Delhi for the final portion of the excursion. We stayed at a cute little boutique hotel called the Hotel Dolphin Grand. The only issue was the sewer smell through out the property. Ick!
We were able to go to a traditional Indian wrestling den and to the Delhi University.

That evening I boarded a plane for Canada. I had stops in Paris, Montreal, Ottawa and finally Alberta. Only took 36hrs. LOL! I was so glad to see a bed.
I have placed other pics on this blog