Friday, May 25, 2012

Bits and Pieces of Holiday - North India

Still posting pictures of our holiday in North India. Here's some random pictures to tell a tale or two. Enjoy!

Thinking 'style' midst the Dabbawallas?  Forget about it!  They are really a cool lot. Consider  this - getting the tiffins  from the person's home , on time to office, school, with nary a margin  of error , on their bikes in the chaotic Mumbai traffic. They are the city's daily icons.  I had to see them in person. I was late for  most of them had moved off on their bikes on another day's work of efficient delivery.  Their system of business astounds even  big corporations. They have got it worked out  to perfection!
He 'regulates' your visit to the Jama Masjid, Delhi.  Friday prayers were on and we waited, then we left our shoes outside and entered the huge courtyard which  can hold 25,000  people.
Cave No. 3, the most impressive of the  Kanheri caves in this complex, located deep inside the Sanjay Gandhi National Park,  Mumbai. Out of the solid basaltic rocks, the Buddhist monks carved viharas ( monasteries) and chaityas ( temples)  between  the 2nd and 9th centuries
In  Kamala  Nehru Park, Mumbai an old Mother Hubbard's shoe stands. No children in sight but  in a school nearby, their lively noises can be heard.

A gem of a museum - the Mani Bhavan  Museum, Mumbai. There's much to captivate us learning about the live of  Mahatma. It was here that Gandhi stayed during his visits to Bombay from 1917 - 1934.
Upon approaching this building, Valsa commented, 'It looks like a haunted house!'. We laughed. It looks it! A creepy script  would be just right! We were told it has garnered some publicity in a magazine. But  up the stairs and into one of the rooms, things changed, godly and friendly.  We wouldn't have imagined enjoying a Sunday church service among people from Baltimore in USA, Singapore, India, Australia. Alleluia !
The famed  Mahalaxmi Dhobi Ghat  ( municipal laundry) of Mumbai.  Forget about any manner of Electrolux or Hitachi machines. Get  slapping those clothes on the stone slabs of the open - air troughs.

Stop by for a quencher of sugar cane drink by this vendor in Mumbai.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Anne Lynken- Garner - Sunday's Child

Hi friends,

This is Anne Lyken - Garner, author, blogger and editor who I'm happy to host  for a very good reason. Anne is ready to launch her book, Sunday's Child on May 22nd.

Do join me in congratulating her on her worthy efforts and wishing her heaps of success!

Well done, Anne!

ANNE LYKEN-GARNER is the author of Sunday's Child - the inspiring, true tale of a little girl struggling to rise above appalling living conditions, poverty, violence and abuse.


Sunday's Child tells of the harrowing systematic abuse of a little girl by her grandmother, while giving the reader a glimpse of the political and cultural climate of 1980's Guyana.

In a desperate economic crisis, Guyana is forced to resort to food and energy rationing. Acclaimed author Anne Lyken-Garner's tale picks up on the humorous aspects that the young girl experiences while forced to spend hours in food lines, simultaneously unfolding the sadness and desperation that is her everyday life.

A soldier in Jonestown, where more than nine hundred people committed mass suicide, the young girl's uncle tells her of the dead bodies he's seen - but she doesn't mention the one that she herself has witnessed. When she loses the one person in her life who cares for her - and tries to save her - she knows in her heart that her life is about to end...

Sunday's Child will be released on March 22nd. Please go to the author page on release day to purchase this book:

Anne can also be found on her How To Build Confidence blog. All her confidence-building articles here are gleaned from her life's experiences, which have taught her that your past doesn't' have to shape who you are today.

Anne has also started an event on Facebook towards this release. You can join this event at the link below to ask her any questions about anything relating to Sunday's Child or her publishing journey. Event:


Sunday's Child is available as a Kindle download from Amazon and a Nook download from Barnes & Noble. It will also be available in PDF and EPUB format from Pulse online bookstore. The PDF version will be viewable on all PC and laptop systems, as well as smart phones, and the EPUB version will be viewable on all eReaders (Kindle, Nook, iPad, Sony Reader, BlackBerry Playbook, etc.). No matter which particular platform they prefer, they will be able to read a copy in a wide variety of different electronic formats, all for only $2.99.

A special discount allows you to purchase an electronic copy (EPUB or PDF) for only $1.99, using the promo code: FFSCALG
Simply enter the code in the appropriate field while ordering a copy of Sunday's Child from Pulse online bookstore:

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary

After the wonderful visit to Fatehpur Sikri, we 'winged' our way to Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary now known as Keoladeo National Park. I was looking forward to it as this would be an eco experience to enjoy so far.

Late morning into noon wasn't the best time of the day to watch birds but we wanted to see what  this place has to offer. The migratory season was on. That made me think of the Raptor Watch at Tanjung Tuan  back home which I had to miss. But the haven did not disappoint us for we saw a good number of birds to make it memorable.

Our guide cycled and we sat in a rickshaw pedalled by a staff. No motorised vehicles are allowed.  Eyes roving, what was interesting did not escape Bhim Singh Rana's keen sense. I remember a few birds : the bee eater, long-tailed shrike, Indian moorhen, greater egret, ibis spoonbill, common coot, painted stork, white -breasted kingfisher, greater cormorant. He got excited when he spotted the Sarus Crane. 'That's a rare sight,' he said of the largest and tallest bird of the Indian subcontinent. It is an elegant  grey bird with a bright red face and neck sporting a white cap .

This interlude before Jaipur was a welcome experience. The sun did not deter us. Truly my heart beat must have slowed down to a nice pitter patter just admiring the birds and asking questions! The natural surroundings of dry grassland, swamps woodlands and wetlands  makes an ideal home for  resident and migratory birds.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Taj Mahal

The Taj Mahal needn't be in my dreams any more.We booked a room in the hotel with a view of the Taj. So that was a loverly treat !

Security is tight at the Taj Mahal and we were already advised by the tour guide. So come as light as you can without holding back the queues as checking is very thorough.

It was definitely an early start to see the icon of India. Dawn at the Taj gave us a memorable  wonderful sight. Love reigns eternal at the Taj Mahal so does its beauty.