Monthly Archive for: ‘October, 2013’

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In #Varanasi, the sacred city…

In #Varanasi, the sacred city along the #Ganges, you’d think #Halloween was an everyday affair. In this place, the elderly and sick come to die on the banks of the sacred river; cremations with massive funeral pyres burn around the clock; and lavishly decorated #Shaivite sadhus like this man – devotees of Lord #Shiva, the God of Destruction in the Hindu trinity – walk the streets, bodies often smeared with human ash and clad in little more than a loin cloth. But, creepy and Halloween-y it is not: Varanasi, a city where many come to die, is a place of intense beauty, love, passion, and light radiating from without and within. Thanks @eddiebauer @microsoftcorporation #Surface @natgeo & #Ambuja from #GangaS2S! @pedromcbride @davidcmorton

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The #tanneries of Kanpur are…

The #tanneries of Kanpur are notorious for contributing massive pollution to the #Ganges River – things like #chromium, lime, and more going untreated into the river. But, they also provide much needed employment for tens of thousands of people. And, life goes on…here young boys from a local #madrasa play on a pile of chemical coated leather scraps. Thanks to @eddiebauer #surface and @natgeo for making #GangaS2S possible! @davidcmorton @pedromcbride

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The faithful gather at the Banke Bihari temple in Vridavan, Uttar Pradesh, India.

Thursday Thought: Passion and Faith Worlds Apart

Passion is universal humanity. Without it religion, history, romance and art would be useless. – Honore de Balzac – A …

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#Water is a precious commodity,…

#Water is a precious commodity, essential for all life. It is revered here in India, and while water shortages and lack of safe water leave millions without enough to drink, there is massive wastage, too. Here in #Vrindavan, on banks of the #Yamuna, a pipe spews safe #watee onto the ground. Unofficial estimates say 30-40% of India’s piped water is lost due to leakage and waste. #GangaS2S @eddiebauer #surface #watermatters @davidcmorton @pedromcbride

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One of the most important…

One of the most important tributaries to the #Ganges, the #Yamuna starts at #Yamnotri in the high Himalaya; its waters bring life to the foothills in Uttar Pradesh and Haryana. Its makes a difficult run through the mega-metropolis of New #Delhi where most of the city’s raw human waste and industrial effluvia go straight into the river, turning it into an effectively dead river. It continues to flow through #Agra, past the iconic Taj Mahal, and eventually joins the Ganges at #Prayag, or #Allahabad. Here, @davidcmorton and @pedromcbride conduct a water ecology test near the Taj in a river of hot, black, fetid soup. #GangaS2S #surface @eddiebauer #dontswiminyamuna

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Maa Ganga, or Mother #Ganges,…

Maa Ganga, or Mother #Ganges, sustains people in myriad ways: it’s their spiritual heart, provides water for agriculture, ritual, fishing, drinking, bathing, and swimming. Here, boys alternate between morning baths and headlong dives into the river below a massive barrage in #Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh. @pedromcbride, @davidcmorton, and I have another week to go down the river for #GangaS2S – huge thanks to @eddiebauer, #microsoft #surface, and @natgeo for helping make the adventure happen!

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Five years ago, @wendebvalentine and…

Five years ago, @wendebvalentine and I were enjoying the beautiful beaches and community of Puri, Orissa, with our daughter, Lila. An incredible place that is in great danger now from cyclone Phailin. With winds up to 220 kph and a storm surge of maybe 3.5 meters, Phailin has forced the evacuation of over 400,000 people in Orissa and Andhra Pradesh. Sending best wishes to all those in harm’s way from all of us on #GangaS2S.

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Water Power

This post, which went unpublished, was written in Tapovan, a stunning meadow camp above Gaumukh on the Gangotri Glacier, on …

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Waiting for Time

The following is a short missive I wrote on the road the other day about that famous concept: India time. …

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Happy Gangetic Dolphin Day!

Today, October 5th, is Dolphin Day here in India, a day to celebrate the elusive and rare Gangetic freshwater dolphin. …

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