Thursday, April 27, 2006

New Photos...

for new India photos as of April 26, 2006 click here:
  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/thompsoncw/
  • Saturday, March 25, 2006

    Lotus Bahai Temple Delhi


    Lotus Bahai Temple Delhi
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    The Bahai faith :
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bahai

    Entry to the Dargah, Ajmer, India

    The most important Muslim holy site in India. Akbar the Mughal leader used to make the trek from Agra to Ajmer every year.

    Friday, March 24, 2006

    Mussoorie Tibetan prayer flags


    P3150041.jpg
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    You can find a commentary for this photo under the entry "Mussoorie" further down on this page...

    Thursday, March 23, 2006

    beginning of the Shiva festival walk


    The temple on the left is where the 75km walk began that I describe in the entry "Shiva festival/ b-day coincidence?" This is a good shot aswell because one can see people bathing and washing clothes, probably the 2 most frequent uses of the ghats.(though I had qualms about invading their privacy for sure)

    Everything is Holy


    home and nostalgic
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    Everything is holy

    Nandu and company


    home and nostalgic
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    Here is the group of guys from Pushkar, with friend and brahmin priest Nandu in the center, that I spent the "Ajmer Krishna festival," (see prior photo) with. This was an event leading upto Holi, an important Hindu celebration.

    Chennai bound woman


    home and nostalgic
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    Here is a photo of a friend that belongs to one of the more interesting Hindu casts. She is now a business woman, buying Sarees in the south where they are cheaper and selling them at a profit in the north. She is from Chennai and speaks 6 of the 150 or so languages in India

    selling Chai

    In the trains and train stations there is a constant din of sales offers. The chai-men (tea sellers) make a large part of this harmonious din. While travelling by train, the rhythmic chai-man sales offer is heard every 5-10 minutes. Chaya Chaya Chai..Tea..Chai Chai Chaya they say. So did I come to like this chai selling phenomenon that I had to give it a try myself...on the left is the kind Chaiman that obliged me...

    holymen


    home and nostalgic
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    Here are some holymen, whose actual title I have forgotten, they and young children are the only two segments of the Hindu population who are not to be cremated at death, from what I understand because those two segments of the population are pure.

    Thursday, March 16, 2006

    La Cathédrale St. Pierre and La Faculté de médecine

    So here is the imposing St. Peter's Cathedral (a favorite of mine for

    quiet times) built in the 1300s and the adjoining University of

    Medicine to the left...

    Montpellier after 2 and 1/2 years

    What a wild feeling to return to a place where one has spent some of one's most memorable times. The city of Montpellier is like a museum of memories for me, a conversation I had here, a quiet moment spent there. This morning I'll be doing some review of Montpellier history at the municipal museum (place jean jaurès) and then at the Faculty of Medicine that was Europe's first university of medicine, going back to 1220. Last evening I ate at the university restaurant where I took most of my meals during the 03-04 school year, and saw my dorms... A Friend from my Montpellier year will be arriving for a reunion of sorts on Friday, C'est la fête... Once I get home I will add some commentary to the last India photos, there have been some complaints ;-)

    Monday, March 13, 2006

    destination Montpellier

    Thanks to everyone here in India and at home, India has really been a wonderful experience...

    What to say


    What to say
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    />

    What to say


    What to say
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    />

    Sunday, March 12, 2006

    Delhi Bus


    Delhi Bus
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    Pushkar


    Pushkar
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    Jaipur (pink city)


    Jaipur (pink city)
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    Ajmer Krishna Festival


    Ajmer Krishna Festival
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    Kerala


    Kerala
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    Sunday, March 05, 2006

    ode to Indian trains and to berthmates

    After a long haul from Delhi I am now in Varkala in Kerala state, on the Arabian Sea. I have just arrived but I must say that singing traditional Keralan songs, w/ a frisbee for a drum, with the Indians in my berth of the sleeper car was truly a highlight. It is a different world down here in Kerala... more soon, cwt

    Thursday, March 02, 2006

    Mussoorie

    After an evening with new friends in Dehra Dun and a great time w/

    Mohan and his motorbike (don't worry Mom), I ascended into the

    Himalayan foothills to the hill station established by the

    "Britishers," as they are called here, Mussoorie at 6000 ft. Though

    the view of the snow capped Himalayas was obscured by clouds and smog

    (amen for development and its discontents) an even greater surprise

    revealed itself. Descending from a peak in a cable car Iconsulted a

    map, trying to find that not so touristy gem that always makes a

    backpacker's motor purr. To the "Buddha Temple" it was, after finally

    getting the best of a rickshaw driver in price negotiations I walked

    to the secluded temple. Once on the grounds I noticed that there was

    also a school for young Tibetan refugees. On the peak above were

    floating what seemed like a wall of prayer flags. Up at the raised

    "pulpit" at the peak I met Akhil, a teacher at the school. He

    explained the prayer flags to me and told me of his work and of the

    school, his affection for these hills where he too had done his

    studies. After some reflection time and second thoughts about leaving

    that place for my next destination Akhil and I said "goodnight" and

    not good bye, I like his style.

    Here is the kicker, Akhil gave me his contact information, and once

    back in town, after a free ride from local man, I called Akhil up with

    a few more questions. The school was established in 1962 and is

    funded by the Indian Gov't and recognized by the Tibetan Gov't in

    exile in Dharmasala, India. Though they can't take direct donations

    they would welcome volunteers and Akhil said that one could teach with

    a B.A./B.S. The school year is from March to Dec. so any of you out

    there that would like to spend time at a Himalayan hill station as a

    teacher in a Tibetan school over looking

    the green happy valley with its batheable waterfalls and snowpeaked

    views, just let me know...that is if I dont take the position first...

    Well i am off to Kerala at the southern tip of India in an hour. I

    first heard of the state in my Developing World courses as an example

    of successful social development before economic development, the only

    place (in the world? or maybe just in India) with a long running

    elected communist party in power, yep, I'm going pink...

    cwt

    PS: I think my pictures on Flickr got hacked so there is a guy with a

    gun, this is not my picture!

    Tuesday, February 28, 2006

    Rishikesh meditation spot


    Rishikesh meditation spot
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    What is the now lacking?

    Rishikesh

    Fellow travelers are such blessings. The 27 hr train from Varanasi to Haridwar brought the chance to converse with a Brazilian woman who helped me to digest and better understand all that I have been seeing. These fellow travelers bring so many insights both intellectual and tip-wise. After a ride in auto rickshaw from Haridwar, where the Ganges enters the plains out of the Himalayas, to Rishikesh I have set up camp for a day. This place is filled with westerners seeking guidence in yoga and meditation, with only a day I'll have to find a quiet spot along the Ganga to do my own meditation. Tomorrow I move on to Dehra Dun, the capitol of the Uttar Ranchal state to visit with friends of the family.

    PS: for those of you in Humboldt County, the Ganges and the landscape here are very reminiscent of the Trinity River at Willow Creek...no need to buy the plane ticket...;-)

    Saturday, February 25, 2006

    PS:

    Best idea ever: have everyone eat out of bowls made out of leaves, that once thrown on the ground either biodegrade or, more likely, are eaten by cows conveniently roaming the streets...

    Shiva festival/ b-day coincidence?

    Well the yearly Shiva festival is being celebrated today (Varanasi is the Shiva city). Last evening a 75km walk started from the "burning" (cremation) ghat's Shiva temple. Completion of the loop brings good things to one's family for the year to come. A veritable river of young men rushed down the waterfront of Varanasi starting around 9 pm on this journey. A friend Noah and I couldn't hold ourselves back and joined the masses at the burning ghat, after successfully shoving our way into the 9 sq ft Shiva temple along with a raging group of 100 or so males our age and gathering a few grains of rice, tradition requires, we began the walk. It was 8km or so before we realized that we hadn't misunderstood: many take 15hrs to walk the whole 75km. Some water and a hot street omelette finished off the evening nicely around 2am...namaste cwt

    Friday, February 24, 2006

    Varanasi II


    Varanasi II
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    The ghats (the buildings with stairs leading to the Ganges) are used

    for bathing and for washing clothes as well of course as places of

    worship. So many smiling people, so kind...

    Varanasi


    Varanasi
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    Here in Varanasi, preparations are heating up for the festival

    tomorrow. Last evening I attended a concert of classical Indian music

    near the ghats and ran into a fellow traveler that I had met in Delhi.

    This morning took me to the Golden Temple of Varanasi with its golden

    exterior. Energy is very high there as it has been a spot of high

    Muslim/ Hindu tensions, many soldiers lining the streets, and the

    energy of those coming to worship, one is carried along by the flow of

    pilgrims.

    Also to a Nepalese temple this morning, with a shaded place perched

    atop the ghats, what a view.

    I am at the Elvis, yes Elvis guesthouse, love,

    chris

    Varanasi


    Varanasi
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    Here in Varanasi, preparations are heating up for the festival

    tomorrow. Last evening I attended a concert of classical Indian music

    near the ghats and ran into a fellow traveler that I had met in Delhi.

    This morning took me to the Golden Temple of Varanasi with its golden

    exterior. Energy is very high there as it has been a spot of high

    Muslim/ Hindu tensions, many soldiers lining the streets, and the

    energy of those coming to worship, one is carried along by the flow of

    pilgrims.

    Also to a Nepalese temple this morning, with a shaded place perched

    atop the ghats, what a view.

    I am at the Elvis, yes Elvis guesthouse, love,

    chris

    Wednesday, February 22, 2006

    Vrindavan temple


    Vrindavan temple
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    Varanasi bound

    After a couple days of recoup I am feeling very well, Friend Meera in Delhi and her family have been so wonderful. I am heading to Varanasi tomorrow the Feb. 23 and then on to Haridwar the Feb. 27 as planned. I entered a mall near Delhi today (nicer than many US malls) and can still not reconcile its luxury with the poverty within shouting distance and its modernity with the rich and ancient history of India. All my love, namaste, chris

    Monday, February 20, 2006

    ah Delhi belly

    Well, Delhi-belly set in the day before last, so I came back to the comforts of friends here in Delhi. I will head back out once it has passed. What times in Mathura and Vrindavan. My Rickshaw driver yesterday was Muslim, and through our gestures and newspaper photos were able to agree that GW Bush is bad and that Bill Clinton is good, a good democrat this man...salam ali khoum

    Mathura and Vrindavan


    Mathura and Vrindavan
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    Truly as if a dream, without a tourist in sight, stepping on to a

    fully decorated row boat to view the Ghats of Mathura. The Monkies

    and temples of Vrindavan, where Krishna had formative experiences...

    Mathura and Vrindavan


    Mathura and Vrindavan
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    Truly as if a dream, without a tourist in sight, stepping on to a

    fully decorated row boat to view the Ghats of Mathura. The Monkies

    and temples of Vrindavan, where Krishna had formative experiences...

    Saturday, February 18, 2006

    2/17


    2/17
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    2/17


    2/17
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    2/17


    2/17
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    itinerary/ delhi train station

    Hello again from Pahar Ganj in New Delhi. After an afternoon exploring the narrow and busy backstreets of the Muslim neighborhood ajacent to the Jama mosque yesterday, today I spent the better part of the morning at New Delhi train station booking tickets, and was successful. Thus I have an itinerary to pass along: 2/19 Mathura/ Vrindavan 2/21 night train to Varanasi 2/27 night train to Haridwar and Rishikesh ?/? Amristar and Dharmasala (if time) ?/? ??????? New Delhi

    More pictures on the way, namaste, chris

    Thursday, February 16, 2006

    P2280030.JPG


    P2280030.JPG
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    boy.jpg


    boy.jpg
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    P3010036.JPG


    P3010036.JPG
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    P2280021.JPG


    P2280021.JPG
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    P3010035.JPG


    P3010035.JPG
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.

    Delhi, Noida

    Namaste from in Pahar ganj, a bustling bazaar area in Delhi (picture to come). There is not enough time to note all that I would like to share. I love buzing around town in a tempo(or auto rickshaw) (picture) discovering little treasures tucked away on side steets, and beautiful colors, faces, and entrancing eyes. Today i will visit the Jama mosque, reputed the largest in Asia (including Asia minor I dont know). 20,000 can attend prayers there. I am very eager to see the muslim experience up close. India has the second largest Muslim population in the world. Friends of my family have welcomed me at their home in Noida 30 km from Delhi in Uttar Pradesh. What an honor it has been. They have all been so helpful and filled me with such delicacies. Shukriah. Tomorrow or the next day I will leave for Mathura and Vrindavan abit south. NPR did a multi day report on Vrindavan, it is probably still available on npr.org . That is all for now, all my love, namaste, chris

    Wednesday, February 15, 2006

    India!

    well here we are in Delhi! I have been lucky to meet many travelers that you spend a few hours with, explore with, and then part ways, a woman from quebec and now Jared sitting next to me from australia. To a friend Meera's house 30km from Delhi tonight. more soon, all my love, the world is beautiful, people are beautiful, chris

    Monday, February 13, 2006

    aeroports de paris

    here at the airport, little time, all is well, thanks to everyone in France, it was great to see you all. well, my lack of words is like the calm before the storm i guess... 7h00 paris time is departure cwt

    Sunday, February 12, 2006

    Rochelle/Paris

    La Rochelle's first mayor came along in 1124 + or-. What a wonderful welcome I had tonight at the train station in Paris from friends Thomas, Olivier, Antoine, et Rebekah. Great to see some friendly faces, thanks for everything...

    De retour a Paris

    My time in Nantes is now passed, paris tonight, tomorrow, New Delhi Tuesday. La Rochelle was fantastic, what a wealth of history. First Euro city to have mayor, a rare French protestant haven until Richelieu reconquers it in 1624, the last French city to be liberated in WWII. Like Nantes, and le Croisic, a "beneficiary" of early Euro intl commerce and the triangular trade, notably with French holdings in Africa, the Caribbean, and French Canada. see you in NewDelhi, cwt

    Friday, February 10, 2006

    La Rochelle


    La Rochelle
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    L'entrée au vieux port de La Rochelle/ Entrance to La Rochelle's Old Port

    Wednesday, February 08, 2006

    continued protests

    Yesterday was also a day of mobilization against the contrat première embauche that I mentioned earlier. According to the papers there were 10,000 at the events. I picked up a flyer at the protest from the local communist party The institutionalization of job precariousness for youth and the distrust of economic liberalism in general were the highlights. According to a chart in Le Figaro, youth between 18 and 26 have a jobless rate going from 30 to 10 percent (older than 30 and the rate is 5-10 percent). If the new reform is passed, youth in that same age group will be able to be fired without rationale, thus the precariousness...but more jobs aswell?

    misc

    Well, Friday will be an outing to l'île Noirmoutier (Noirmoutier Island), a French island off the Atlantic coast. If I had been on top of things I might have gotten a tour of the Airbus factory where they are constructing the A380, the largest passenger plane ever built, but alas...

    France 2, the TV station, had a special on India's developing economy, and the attempt of Meetal steel to acquire Alcelor. Couple interesting points: First the Bombay/ Mumbai stock market just passed the symbolic 10,000 point mark for the first time. Second, Indian companies are serving a nitch/market that Occidental companies have been less willing to enter. Indian capitalists are designing products for developing countries like China and Indonesia, like 2,000 $ cars that are affordable for middle class Chinese and Indonesians. According to the guests on the show often developing countries design exclusively for US or European tastes, but increasingly India is developing products specifically for the lower GDP per capita countries.

    Another thing that I have been musing about is the reason that the ramparts around Nantes were taken down in the 1700s. I can't get over what a symbolic event this is, why was there such a confidence about the safety of the city that it was judged prudent to take down the walls. The reasoning I have found is that the ramparts were inhibiting the city's growth. But where did the threat that led to the walls being built go? Was it that international commerce had relieved the threat by ending scarcity of food and materials and tying peoples' well being to the European/ international market instead of to local production subject to scarcity that would cause regional instability or fear of it? I'll continue to research...

    Isn't this caricatures of Mohamed affair starting to look like the clash of civilizations? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clash_of_civilizations

    Le Phare du Croisic/ Le Croisic's Lighthouse

    Le Croisic

    Well, hello to all. Hope the year of the dog is off to a good start for you. Yesterday took me by train to Le Croisic a town at the end of a Peninsula near the mouth of the Loire river as it empties out into the Atlantic.

    Without a tourist insight, I exited the small train station and turned right. The tourist office being closed at the time of my arrival, I spotted a hill with some sort of rock construction at its top. So in order to get an idea of how Le Croisic was laid out I went up to the perch. The top was roped off because of "éboulis" or rock slides but things looked pretty stable ... Le Croisic is a medieval town that has had two periods of expansion. The first resulted from the salt trade. Salt beds inland were developed and trade boomed. Then in the 18th century as the price of salt decreased Le Croisic became a cannery town and thus had a second economic boom. One cannery is still standing today and shrimp are still harvested off shore. In 1735 Mr Pierre Bourguet a hydrographer and Croisicais sailed to present day Ecuador where he spent 10 years and measured a degree of the meridian among other things. His statue with a plaque from the Ecuadoran government is just off the main pier of town. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pierre_Bouguer The US Navy had a station in Le Croisic during WWI. Even with the remarkable Gothic church, the historic buildings, colorful ships, and views of the sea, it was Le Croisic's light house, and the 3/4 kilometer jetty leading to it that I found most enchanting. After a half an hour or so at the base of the lighthouse I headed back to the train station where a very French bourgeoise woman and I happened to be running towards the departing train at the same time. cwt

    Saturday, February 04, 2006

    bowling: the truth

    this is painful for me to say but Luca is threatening to kick me out of her place if I don't: She came very close to beating me at bowling. My reputation as a bowling giant is really in question here but the truth is the truth. cwt

    Luca's tram stop


    Luca's tram stop
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    Hello all, well, another fine couple days here in chilly France. I

    thought I should add the disclaimer to my editorial comments from my

    last entry that I am of course not French (though I do my best) and

    so all my comments are of course just my musings. Do with as you

    may...

    Otherwise, I am enjoying this time for reflection about the future,

    taking stock of where I have been and what I would like to do

    careerwise next. Putting myself outside my normal space, in other

    words outside the US (though of course one could do the same by

    knocking on the neighbors' door or smiling at a stranger), helps to

    shake up my thinking a bit, to broaden the field of possibilities as I

    think about the future.

    Hope everyone is well, out there,

    chris

    Thursday, February 02, 2006

    Queen Mary 2

    Just as the geography of Nantes has shaped its history, the region's economy is still (though less and less) dependent on its proximity to the atlantic. Shipbuilding is still a big industry and is based in St. Nazaire, a city to the west of Nantes. Notably, the largest cruise ship ever built, the Queen Mary 2, was built in St. Nazaire. cwt

    quelle journée!

    What a day it has been. A couple pieces of good news came down the pike today, First my degree was cleared by my university, and second the Peace Corps gave me final medical clearance. Une fête is in order.

    A side note: I am in a cyber café where kids are playing network games with two teams: Americans and Iraqis...being Iraqi seems to be the popular choice... update: the Iraqis seem to be winning...

    On the French front all is well, I finally gave into the societal pressures to participate in the "soldes," the department store sales that take place once a year (maybe twice). So now I won't be getting any more of those looks in the Tram as I now mix in with the French clothing norms quite nicely.

    An interesting note: At the supermarket they did not have any disposable plastic bags! There is an anti bag mobilisation (i've always been an anti-bagist). I was forced to buy a reusable bag for 15 cents. Impressed I was...

    Yesterday I began to photograph signs, it's a new hobby if you will. Street signs, store signs, posters, etc.

    Yesterday evening I went bowling of all things...I think there was a better selection of 60s American music than at your average alley in the states.

    The day before last a protests took place all over France over the newly proposed contrat premier embauche (first employment contract) which is one in a slough of reforms by the French government, currently a "Right" government to lower the unemployment rate. I was lucky enough to attend the Nantes protest. The debate is interesting though because the "Right" is convinced that more flexibility on hiring and firing needs to be given to companies in order to lower the rate. The "Left" which is of course in favor of a low unemployment rate sees the government's reforms as institutionalizing the "precariousness" of jobs, especially for young workers. The strong unions in France are bringing out the crowds in protest. The protest culture in France and the sentiment of social "solidarity" is quite particular so I was happy to see it first hand. There is a strong movement against economic liberalism (free market capitalism) which is seen as a threat to culture, to jobs, and workers rights. This clashes pretty nastily with the conviction of the French "Right" that the way to help the greatest number is for France to sharpen its swords and compete in the global economy by helping business along instead of getting caught up in worker's rights. The US of course represents free market capitalism to Frenchmen so this explains some of their anti-US sentiment (which is only skin deep)

    A couple news commentaries: On the news front, there is much talk here of the hostile takeover attempt of Mittal steel (# 1 in the world ) originally from India on the European steel manufacturer Arcelor (#2). In short the Europeans don't want to lose their seat at the controls of the world economy. This takeover attempt however says alot about the state of things in the World and in Europe. First the East is rising, who could have imagined a few years back an Indian born company buying up one of Europe's largest. Second, the EU is really being tested by this. It will be interesting to see how the EU tackles the situation, or if it can with its current structure. But one thing is for certain, if Europe wasn't united Arcelor would have already been bought up.

    Also Interesting is an article that appeared today on a new book that questions all the literature on the Rwandan genocide until now. France has taken the brunt of the blame for the West's involvement. I don't know if this book (written by a Frenchman) is an attempt to clear France's name but it uses the CIA and the UN as sources in saying that Paul Kagame, the current president and hailed by the west post-genocide, more or less planned the genocide and let Rwandan Tutsis be slaughtered, in favor of Tutsis exiled in Uganda, such as himself.

    Well, that is all for today, hope all is well with you all, love, chris

    protest


    protest
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    the banner says ~ "no legal slavery"

    Monday, January 30, 2006

    touring Nantes

    Hello All, today I had my first good look at downtown Nantes. I followed a path that the office du tourisme set out. Nantes' most important "contributions" to history seem the result of its geographic position at the mouth of the Loire river. Nantes was the the busiest slavery port in France. 500,000 Africans were transported to America in the triangular trade ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triangular_trade ) by ships from Nantes. Other Africans were brought directly back to Nantes for sale. The municipal newsletter is announcing that the esplanade along the Loire is going to become a monument in memory of Nantes' regrettable place in the slave trade. The theme of the article is "confronting the city's past in order to build a better future." Jacques Chirac will soon be announcing the exact date of the day of commemoration of the slave trade.

    On a lighter note, Nantes is also the home of LU cookies.

    Nantes' architecture differs from from that of Montpellier, as far as it jumps out at me, in the smokestacks and the roofing, looks like a climate issue. Nantes is the capital of Brittany and much of its early history surrounds Brittany's clashes with Normandy to the north. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nantes love you all, chris

    Sunday, January 29, 2006

    bonjour Nantes

    well after a second full day of monet, Gauguin, and courbet, roasted chestnuts, and a great film (www.bricedenice.com) in Paris I am now in Nantes. Yesterday (saturday) i was invited by my nantaise friend Luca to attend a cooking class for the public in which she is the assistant to the chef. The cooking class took place at Luca's culinary school where she attends full time. it was fast and furious but i think i may have picked up a few french culinary moves that i'll have to share later, during the class it began to snow and before we knew it all was white and bon hommes de neige were popping up everywhere. nantes, according to Antoine, is the favorite city of the French, and i must concur though i will be doing my indepth research tomorrow. for the moment i am at a laundromat where they have internet machines built in the walls. well hope all is well with you all, love, cwt

    Wednesday, January 25, 2006

    oh Paris


    oh Paris
    Originally uploaded by parisdelhi.
    oh Paris, after a smooth air canada flight Paris has engulfed me.

    Antoine a French friend from Humboldt State is hosting me. Today we

    stopped by the Institut du Monde Arabe (Institute of the Arab World).

    This evening Antoine and his girlfriend Cécile made a delectable

    dinner, reminding me of all those French tastes that I have missed

    since my year in Montpellier. It has been a great pleasure spending

    time with them both. Antoine is a graduate in Computer Science and

    Cécile is working to become an English professor.

    Tomorrow the canal st. martin is on taps. This is where Amélie liked

    to go to skip stones on the water (ricochets).



    I must mention at least one of the folks that I talked with on the

    plane. Sami from Lebanon and the Québécois steward, both had great

    stories to share. Sami about doing business with Chinese furniture

    factories and life lessons and le Québécois Steward about his life of

    2 days in Paris 4 days in Montreal per week.

    à très bientôt,

    chris

    Wednesday, January 18, 2006

    Pre-Trip Meeting with Narinder

    I have had the fortune to meet an Indian man by the name of Narinder here in Portland. He will be visiting friends and family in India during part of my sojourn in his mother country. His kindness has been overwhelming, Narinder will be picking me up in Delhi and taking me to his home state of Haryana and Punjab. There were a couple things that he mentioned during our conversations that I wanted to share. He believes that the biggest obstacle for India is corruption, and that time will replace the old guard with a more meritocratic new generation. He described how many are required to pay as much as 10,000 rps for a marriage licence that is supposed to be free. 6 days 'til take off...Here is my Itinerary: Jan 25-27 in Paris Jan 27- Feb 12 in Nantes, France Feb 12 - Feb 14 in Paris Feb 14 - March 14 in India (details forthcoming) March 15 - 20 in Montpellier, France March 20 - 22 in Paris March 22 Portland, USA cwt

    --

    Saturday, December 17, 2005

    Intro/ Blog's up

    Here we are mid-December. I have finished my BA in Intl Studies and French and will soon be swinging the ol' tote bag over my right shoulder. This blog will serve as a journal, and as a means to share my experiences in France, India, and eventually Africa with you: my beautiful friends and family. The plane leaves January 24, so rendez-vous here in late January! Happy Holidays to all!