So tangible and tactile: rough bricks and cobblestones; wet paving and glass, and solids penetrated by volumes, some dark and mysterious, leading who knows where, some glowing with illumination and cinnamon cakes or soft cuddly behind ancient glazing bars. It’s nearly closing time in Rumors and The Shepherd’s Purse on Church Street, Whitby.
I love the quality of light at this time of the year and with dew on the grass, a low sun creating long shadows, and the colours of autumn; this scene of a few sheep, a tussocky meadow and some cranky old trees is transformed into an idyl of autumn.
Constructed from white marble and started in 1437, this Jain temple has over 1444 pillars. It has four faces in the chamukha style and the architecture is a blend of Hoysala and Western Indian, so it does not follow the usual Northern Indian temple design which usually have rather dark interiors. It’s a beautiful place set in a remote location in the mountains.
My first impressions of Badami were quite overwhelming. A place that has remained special to me, and that’s quite a spiritual feeling.
It’s just an ordinary small town, yet the setting must have a lot to do with its attraction. These sandstone cliffs run in an unbroken line for several miles and this little town has somehow wedged itself into this gap like a stopper in a bottle.
It’s a very old place. The lake or tank was formed in about the 5th century and there are stone inscriptions that date from the 6th century. Those who came here all those centuries ago must also have felt the spirituality of the location because they carved the cave temples that you can see in the far cliff. Those date from the 7th century.
The surrounding district is wonderful as well. Just east of here there are two World Heritage Sites at Pattakadal and Aihole where some of the earliest stone temples were built. It’s a place I want to go back to. It has a strange draw upon me.
Put a man in a uniform and it can either bring out the best in him, or……….
He went through my baggage and found a penknife in the case that was going in the hold.
After going through everything until I was clearly getting irritated, he then said, “School pen?”
Then he and his female assistant went off laughing. I’d been had.
Thanks Mr Yadav, I hope you are enjoying your retirement…… !