Portrait of the Eternal

Nautch girl statue dating from the early 17th century, now preserved behind glass at the City Palace Museum in Udaipur. (With apologies to Manuel Álvarez Bravo.)



For in the Market-place, one Dusk of Day,
I watch’d the Potter thumping his wet Clay:
And with its all obliterated Tongue
It murmur’d—“Gently, Brother, gently, pray!”

-The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyám

Look, a native!

*sigh* Awfulness, at the Jaswant Thada memorial in Jodhpur. OK. Yes, I take photos too. I am frequently also a tourist. I am very often That Person with the camera being dorky to Get My Shot. But I draw the line at getting all up in an eight-year-old’s face and treating him like a performing seal – a mentally defective performing seal, at that – which is what these idiots did for close to 20 minutes, apparently, according to other people who were there. They yelled at him when he didn’t pose exactly right, they manhandled him into the positions and poses they wanted, and were generally awful. Until a few of us went over to yell at them. For all I know they could have done the exact same thing somewhere else the next day, though.

Taken in December of 2009


Langurs hanging out in some ruins outside the Jain temple complex at Ranakpur, in Rajasthan. It’s a little hard to tell, but the one on the extreme right is juuust about to stick his tongue out at me. Cheeky monkey.

Taken in December of 2009