Friday, December 30, 2011

Adventure in India - Day 5 Veranasi

Merry Christmas!

Vikrum and the travel agency representative picked us up and got us to the airport and our short flight.

We had a remarkable evening. Our driver could only go so far to get us to the Ganges River. Our guide herded us through the traffic and crowds, many of them tourists for a number of blocks. He placed us in a wooden boat among many others filled with both pilgrims and tourists. There was a ceremony in a major gaht (stairway area leading to the river) and we watched 6 priests do a ritual involving bells, incense, fire and music. One of the ritual objects was shaped light a Christmas tree (or seemed to us). Then we were rowed to see the major crematorium where the dead are burned along the river. It was all so very moving and hard to put into words. The pictures do not capture the true feeling.

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