Sunday, December 07, 2008

Sunil's India - Part 3

DSCN8257Last week, India was front and center on the evening news. Yesterday, we discussed 'Slumdog Millionaire,' set in that country's most shimmering glitz and its deepest poverty. But India has a billion faces. Well, 1,129,866,154 to be exact (source: CIA World Factbook, 2007). Many of its faces are, unsurprisingly, sunny. Life is like that. My friend Sunil Roopchand unquestionably brought some sunlight to the subcontinent of his ancestors when he made a dream trip there in March of this year. Which Sunil is sharing with us, though photography and anecdotes, to be posted on this blog over two months, every Sunday. Here's Part 3....

Sunil: 'Outside of a Haveli in Jailsamer, Rajastan... ' Haveli is a terhm used for private residence in North India. Wikipedia explains that the follow the Islamic style of architeture, with a courtyard, a fountain, and lots of geometric shapes and symmetry. Rajasthan, India's largest state, on the Pakistan border, is a must-see as it contains medieval desert kingdoms straight out of Tales of the Arabian Nights. Each city was the capital of little sultanate, particularly Jaipur, Jhodpur, and Udaipur...

Sunil: 'Poster was interesting as the man seemed angry'. The Hindi script, Devangari, is actually very simple and very regular - everything is pronounced as it is written. Hindi is an Indo-European language, and its grammar is not unlike the Romance and Germanic languages - gender, tenses, conjugation - and less complicated than the Slavic languages (no case - nouns don't change based on how they're used). So, Hindi is the second-easiest of the Asian languages. The winner is Indonesian, which uses the Roman alphabet and has a very uncomplicated grammar...

Sunil: "Girls were heading to the temple and they were singing.' Aaron: 'India is so colorful! When they visit the US, it must look as drab as Dorothy Gale's Kansas in the first fifteen minutes of 'The Wizard of Oz.'

Sunil: 'and so I had to share my camel with a fellow tourist.' Aaron; 'what a hunky fellow tourist!'. Since Rajasthan is a desert, a camel ride is tourist classic!

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