Along a secluded hill, facing the mighty Kanchenjunga range, the chill wind gusts downwards, past the dinosaurs running amok in this Jurassic Park!
Ok, its not THE Jurassic Park and neither are the dinosaurs alive 🙂 This is one of the most unusual, surrealistic science parks I have come across. Situated well away from the town of Kalimpong, up on the hill that leads onto Delo (famous as a picnic spot with splendid views of the Kanchenjunga range) lies an often overlooked, splendid science park, simply known as the… Science City 🙂
Whilst the actual exhibits in the building mid-way up the hill are the usual mini science experiments which are your usual run of the mill…the real treasures hide up on the crest of the hill. Walk up the path to the top and the vista will open out in front of you with an amazing array of life size, well crafted dinosaurs of all shapes and sizes, looking well at ease on the wind swept hill. Making their home among these interesting specimens are a number of excellent large scale science exhibits demonstrating various principles of physics. All in all a beautifully made mini science park which does not get the due attention it deserves.
The next time you are in North Bengal – Kalimpong, do drop in for a visit. Kids will surely love the place and adults will be amazed and amused by it 🙂
Just for the record, I end with the usual photograph of the spectacular Kanchenjunga range taken from the Delo viewpoint further up the road.
A little known and rarely travelled part of India is the North eastern state of Tripura. This was once the seat of a thriving kingdom that extended upwards through Assam, Manipur and Myanmar. There are some superb examples of rock cut and built form Hindu architecture that can be found here that have their own distinct styles and motifs.
Today’s picture shows the rockcut figures found at Unakoti, Tripura.
For more information on Unakoti, please refer to the wikipedia entry found here.
In the North East of India along the Myanmar border lies the hill-state of Mizoram. Like all other north-eastern tribes of India, they have their own unique culture and predominantly Mongoloid features. Most of the populace in the state, practice Christianity, however there are a few among them that have been following Judaism since from as far back as they can remember. Some believe that all Mizos are in fact descended from the lost tribe of Israel and it was this intriguing story that had led me here, many years ago.
This tribe, The Bnei Menashe, traces its lineage back more than 2,000 years! all the way to 723 BC when they had been (one among 9 other tribes) exiled from Palestine by the Assyrian empire. They had subsequently been “lost” and then “found”/re-surfaced far away in Mizoram!
I was curious as to how a tribe could disappear and finally end up so far away from where they had originated. I went to the public library in Aizawl and did my research form various sources on the chronology of events. I have tried to draw the path the tribe took on the way to where they are now in the map below.
From what I could gather, the chronology is as follows :
– Around 723 BC, the ten tribes are banished and they all set out in different directions.
– They seemingly found refuge among the Caucasian plains where they lived for a few centuries, never safe, since they were constantly being attacked by armies from China and Mongolia with a number of raids taking them away as slaves.
– Around 220 BC, the first Chinese emperor ordered the building of the Great Wall and in order to get slaves for such a massive enterprise, the armies gathered all nomadic tribes and enslaved them.
– After undergoing decades of torture and slavery whilst working the wall, apparently a few survivors managed to get an opportunity to escape, and they fled along the easy coast of China into Myanmar and then on downwards to the dense jungles of North East India which were largely unpopulated, and a safe haven.
Now I am no historian and I cannot vouch for the authenticity of any of the matter above but it is plausible and indeed there seem to be records that lend credence to the theory. I cannot cite any true records since it was many years ago, but my intention anyway was primarily to highlight yet another amazing and unexpected fact of India… enough to wake curiosity to discove rthe truth yourself 🙂
Found this posted on a Facebook group. Obviously doe snot belong to me, cos I dont live in Australia!
Its a tornado of fire that ravaged the Outback for 40 minutes (purportedly)
Its autumn…which means its time for some of the biggest festivals of India. This is the time when (for a change) it actually feels great to have a bugeoning population! 🙂 as everyone crowds the streets…dressed their best … a true riot of colour.
Different states in India have varying presiding deities, and its quite interesting seeing the way festivals are celebrated differently.
Today is the start of the biggest festival in my city – Mumbai – Ganesh Chaturthi. The city’s presiding deity is Ganesha and is loved and revered in equal parts especially in Maharashtra with the Ganesha festival being at its boisterous best in Mumbai. Its no exception this year, as people have once again spared no expense for the elephant God, despite the back breaking inflation and general ineptitude of the administration.
Here’s what you can expect … (this photo is not mine and I do not claim the rights to it. Its purely used to show the sheer revelry the festival brings out)
While on the other side of the country, in the hills of Darjeeling, the festival of Teej was celebrated. Here is a pic showing the celebration (again its not mine and I thank the photographer for posting it!)