Lucky stop XIII of the Asian Saga, Kolkata. If you missed stop XII, see it here. Kolkata was really a more of a means to an end than a destination for me. I had to fly back to China from India and since I was passing through Kolkata to do so, I thought it would be wise to spend a day or two in the city. I'm pretty happy I did as it felt very different from other Indian cities I had been to previously.
Oddly, much of the place reminded me of Havana, Cuba with the colonial architecture and the prevalence of the Ambassador cars. The Ambassadors aren't necessarily old like the cars in Cuba, it is just that the design doesn't look like it has been updated since the early 60s. I really only had one day in the city so I didn't have as much time as I'd have liked to explore. I wanted to visit the famous Howrah bridge and a few more temples but never had the chance. I did catch a small festival at Kali Ghat but missed the animal sacrifice that was to occur the next morning. I don't have a lot of observations to offer since I was there so briefly. The subway was one of the most crowded I have ever been on, maybe one of the cheapest too.
Namesake of the thread, see if you can spot the album in the photos.
Love it. India is such a magical place. Kolkata doesn't look as scary/rough as I thought it would. I've traveled through Rajahsthan, Gujarat and Mumbai but this looks quite different from the India I saw.
Those are great shots! Thanks for bringing back my memories of Kolkata... the rabid dog outside Howrah Station bearing his teeth. E coli food poisoning. Black Santa and plastic lighted Christmas palms. A roach infested hotel watching the Sai Baba Xmas eve special on tele. Shysters- especially at the Kali temple. Middle aged men with orange hair. Herders and their goats in the middle of rush hour. Thick black-lung air. Never wondered why everyone was coughing. Men and children "doing their business" right out on the street. Sad decaying old British colonial buildings and piles of rubble everywhere. And why not?
“Skyscrapers! Unhealthy ugly giants! To live and work as close as to the land is a blessing! Remember, you are not a cloud! Come down and live on the ground!”
― Mehmet Murat ildan
Oh yeah, it does look like Havana, especially the first picture! Nice set, I have always wanted to go to Kolkata. I understand it has a lot of great and grand but slightly crumbling Victorian architecture. It is also quite know as an academic city, so I imagine that brings a nice air of sophistication to the place. I assume you went back there on your next trip to go East to Assam and Nagaland right?