Where One Journey Ends

Well, I’m back.  At least my body is back.  Not sure my mental acuity is all that sharp given my jet lag.  But I’m home safe and sound…so a proper shout out to all who wished me well on the trip and those who were praying for health and safety, too.

On my trip, I shot over 1000 photos and have a bit of work yet to do on some of them.  Normally (for those of you who are inclined to this sort of thing) I shoot RAW with my Canon  EOS 7D because you get better pictures in the long run than shooting JPG images.  But, because I knew I’d be taking tons of pictures and that I’d not have time to keep up with the conversion work from RAW to JPG, I shot mostly in JPG format during my trip.  That’s my excuse if the quality of these pictures isn’t quite as good as ones I shoot in RAW.

This picture is illustrative of the journey in some ways.  India is a land of stark contrasts.  It is both beautiful beyond description, yet other aspects of it are ugly beyond words.  In the coming days/weeks, I’ll share a lot of pictures from my journey that show both parts of the India that I experienced.  I realize that one week does not make one an expert on a foreign culture so I don’t claim to be an expert, but I will share my perceptions and those of my traveling companions.

I thought, however, that I’d start off with a beautiful picture.  I’ll probably alternate between pictures of good things, pictures of bad things, and “artsy” pictures just to break up the monotony from day to day.

I took this picture in Bangalore (or Bengaluru, the more ancient name which is being revived) inside a school cafeteria where we ate lunch.  Some presentations were made, and afterward, I turned around and saw this beautiful floral arrangement.  One thing that India does not lack for is C..O..L..O..R.  Even in the most forbidding and ugly slums, you see women wearing beautiful saris, tunics and scarves.  The clothing of the women is spectacular in terms the colors…and somehow, in the midst of the oppressive heat, sweat and filth of the slums, they manage to have clean clothing – perhaps as a last vestige of dignity.

There is much beauty in India…and to my way of thinking, the greatest beauty you will see there is in the faces of the people themselves!  But for today, this picture will suffice to introduce you to the subject matter of….India!

A floral arrangement in Bangalore (Bengaluru)

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1876, General George Custer led his men into a massacre in the battle that was to be called “Little Big Horn.”  Apparently believing the press about his prowess in battle, he arrogantly led a small group of cavalry against a massively superior force…and Custer and his men all died.  His horse, Comanche, survived the battle and became the inspiration for a folk song made popular by Johnny Horton.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: it is improper in Japan for a woman to go to a high-powered business meeting wearing a pantsuit.

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