Africa

Revisit to Johannesburg

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We checked in our rooms which were designed in the shape of Huts with African furnishing. The ambience of the room was stunning. Everything in the room was just perfectly done. Rooms were decorated with bright coloured African fabrics, artwork & handmade furniture. Our next four days program was well placed on the side table.

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घुमक्कड़ी – कुछ खट्टी – कुछ मीठी ( इस बार विदेशों से)

घुमक्कड़ी – कुछ खट्टी – कुछ मीठी ( इस बार विदेशों से)

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भगत सिंह 22 वर्ष फ्रांस में रहने के बाद भी, गाड़ी होशियारपुर स्टाइल में ही चलाता था… फ्रैंकफुर्त पंहुच कर उसने सीधे हाथ का  इंडिकेटर दिया, और इसी बीच हमारे बीच एक और गाड़ी आ गयी.  जैसे ही हमें सीधे हाथ पर बाहर जाती सड़क मिली, हमने अपनी गाड़ी हाइवे से बाहर निकाल दी… ये सोचकर कि भगत ने कुछ देर पहले इंडिकेटर दिया था….बस यहीं हम पंजाबी ड्राइवरी को समझने में भूल कर गये….भगत सीधा निकल चुका था और हम फ्रैंकफुर्त शहर में प्रवेश कर गये.

हमें न तो ये पता था कि भगत के मित्र का नाम क्या है और न ये कि उसका पता क्या है…. अगर तब तक mobile phones का आविष्कार हो जाता तो हम यूं न गुमते.  खैर हम कुछ दूर चलने के बाद सड़क के किनारे खड़े हो गये और ये सोचकर कि भगत हमें पीछे न देखकर शायद  यहां पंहुच जाये और हमें मिल जाये…पर भगत सिंह को न आना था न आया.

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An Egyptian Diary: Post script

An Egyptian Diary: Post script

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India and Egypt shave a lot in common. Both are ancient civilisations and have emerged from centuries of foreign rule. Though the population is only 80 million, there is a lot of ethnic diversity with some who can pass off for Europeans, some who look like Africans and the rest of them look North African or Arab. Not surprising, if one takes into account its history and its geographic location, which is at the intersection of Asia, Africa and Europe…

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Alexandria, the pearl of the Mediterranean

Alexandria, the pearl of the Mediterranean

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Alexandria was home to Egypt’s second wonder of the Ancient World: the famous Lighthouse built by the Ptolemies in the 3rd Century AD. Soaring to a height of 140 metres, its beacon was visible to seamen over 50 km away. It was one of the tallest man-made structures in the world for centuries till a powerful earthquake destroyed it in the 14th century.

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Pyramids: sepulchres of the Pharaohs

Pyramids: sepulchres of the Pharaohs

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The sides of the Pyramids were originally clad with highly polished white limestone slabs and were topped by gold-plated capstones called pyramidions which picked up the first rays of the sun and these rays reflected off the cladding to make the entire pyramid glow with solar luminescence.

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Cairo, the city of a thousand minarets

Cairo, the city of a thousand minarets

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ghumakkar loves serendipitous moments, when one comes across something remarkable but totally unexpected. I had such an experience a few minutes after landing in Cairo. The drive to the hotel from the airport was rather uninteresting as the architecture was pretty drab, just row after boring row of grey, rectangular concrete blocks . All of a sudden, I saw a building which looked like a Hindu temple…

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Obama in Cairo, and Nile Cruise

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While there, I immersed myself to soak in the culture of the land of the pharaohs. They may have lived 7500 years ago but their memories are still strong in present-day Egypt. They believed and led their subjects to believe that they represented the gods on earth. The Egyptians were precocious and did create one of the earliest civilizations on the earth. From those times, they grew cotton and invented paper, and codified many things about life and death.

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