Saturday, March 23, 2013

Upscale market

As striking as it is, it's true that this is the walkway for one of the most upscale markets in all of India.
And what may be even more surprising is that sometimes it looks worse than this. 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

The sculptor

See that glove in his hand?  That's some sculpting skill.

The sculptor of the statue of King George in Coronation Park was commissioned to make some other statues of British dignitaries as well.
Right now they are unlabeled and I don't know who this guy was. 
But he is very detailed.
And I see he was balding and had a mustache. 
What I could find was the name of the sculptor:  C.S. Jagger.
A search revealed a video of Jagger actually creating the statue of King George.
It seems he died before the statue was finished.  So not only did he never see it stand near India Gate, but he would have had no idea that it was removed to occupy empty, under-construction coronation park.
Sculptor for a king who was exiled to an abandoned park.  Ah, the twists of history.

King George's legacy

A friend and I wandered through an old hotel in Delhi and I found this photograph on the wall--evidence that the statue of King George V used to inhabit the chatri near India Gate.
It reminded me that I wanted to go visit the statue and see how the park was coming along.

In some ways, I was not surprised by what I found:  the park was still under construction, though it had been over a year.
But I was surprised by other things.
King George was all wrapped up and bound in black plastic.

As were some of the other statues.
It's disturbing, isn't it?
The construction workers and their families had "moved in" and were slowly improving the surroundings.  The scrub brush was all gone, replaced by granite and marble walkways.  But there was a long way to go yet.
Before they are through there will be an amphitheater and a 31 meter flag pole to tower over the coronation pillar left behind by the British.
The only news I could find said the park might be ready in a year's time.  The authorities were also hard at work trying to come up with a name to replace "coronation park", something to be proud of.

I understand the love/hate tension with King George.  And I admire the efforts of the park committee--they could just throw out all the old, unwanted statues and erase this part of their history. 
Instead, they're going to turn it into a nice place to play cricket--admirable.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Spring at Humayan's tomb

 It feels like spring at Humayan's tomb.  The water is running though the complex.
 The ceiling is freshly repainted.
And it's not meltingly hot....yet. 

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Ire irony

"For ire."
Ya, that's an instigator of ire all right--a meter in an auto that isn't actually being used.
Bargaining with a driver who won't use his meter can certainly raise strong, ireful emotions.