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Tuticorin Macaroon, an Indian twist to a European Confectionary

September 7, 2022 2 comments

Tuticorin Macaroon

An Indian twist to a European Confectionary

Also see: FAM Trip of Tamil Nadu

A macaroon is a small cake or biscuit-like confectionary item made with egg white, sugar and ground almond. It has an Italian and French origin and over the years it has made its way to different parts of the world.

Tuticorin Macaroon

Tuticorin Macaroon

Each country and region that has adopted the macaroon has modified it by using easily available local raw materials. The ground almond has often been replaced with ground cashew nuts or even coconut powder. Some have also added a dash of honey to provide an extra dose of sweetness.

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Amkhoi Wood Fossil Park, IllamBazar, near Bolpur (Shantiniketan)

August 31, 2022 Leave a comment

Amkhoi Wood Fossil Park

IllamBazar, near Bolpur (Shantiniketan)

The villagers of Amkhoi village, near Bolpur, while digging a pond in 2006 stumbled upon giant bone-like structures. Unable to figure out what they were, they informed the local administration.

Entrance of Amkhoi Wood Fossil Park, Illambazar

Entrance of Amkhoi Wood Fossil Park, Illambazar

These lead to a scientific investigation revealing what look like giant bones were actually fossilized wood. Scientific digging continued at the pond site extracting more such fossilized wood specimen, which was estimated to be 15 to 20 million years old.

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World War Memorials and Cemeteries, Pune

August 10, 2022 3 comments

World War Memorials and Cemeteries of Pune

A compilation of World War Memorials and Cemeteries in Pune

Also see: World War I (WWI) Posts

Over a million Indian soldiers served the British Army during the First World War (WWI), which was initially known as the Great War of 1914 – 18. Over 70,000 died fighting in different war theatres spread across Europe, Middle East and Africa.

World War Memorials and Cemeteries of Pune

World War Memorials and Cemeteries of Pune
Left: Pune World War I Memorial, Top right: Maratha War Memorial and Bottom right: Kirkee War Cemetery

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Cossimbazar, colonial mansions, cemeteries and church

Cossimbazar

Colonial mansions, cemeteries, churches and more

Also see: Murshidabad Heritage Festival 2022

The non-descript settlement of Cossimbazar is sandwiched between Murshidabad and Berhampore. Once a busy river port and a flourishing trading center it presently lives in the shadows of its more famous historic counterpart Murshidabad. Only a handful of tourist who visits Murshidabad makes it to Cossimbazar, which have all elements of an independent tourist destination.

Cossimbazar collage

Cossimbazar
Top row left to right: Palace of Roys, Nandi Family Mansion and Old English Cemetery
Bottom row left to right: Dutch Cemetery, Dos Shiva Temple and Armenian Church

The emergence of Cossimbazar as a river port happened in the early part of the 17th century long before the emergence of Murshidabad. By the mid of 17th century the Dutch, French and British have already established their trading post (known as factories) in Cossimbazar. Known for its exotic silk Cossimbazr soon started attracting traders from far and wide turning the small settlement into an international trading hub.

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Bhot Bagan, Howarah Buddhist Monastery with a tumultuous history

July 13, 2022 2 comments

Bhot Bagan

The Howarah Buddhist Monastery with a tumultuous history

Visitors in the Himalayas are all familiar with monasteries. They generally consist of Buddhist shrines of Tibetan origin surrounded by fluttering prayer flags with green hills or snow peaks in the backdrop. But can you imagine such a monastery in the plains of Bengal!! That too right next to the Hooghly River and bang opposite the city of Kolkata.

Bhot Bagan Monastery, Ghusuri, Howrah

Bhot Bagan Monastery, Ghusuri, Howrah

Bhot Bagan, literally meaning the Tibetan Garden, is presently located in the winding lanes of Ghusuri in Howrah. It dates back to 1780 and happens to be the oldest Tibetan Buddhist Monastery outside the Himalayas.

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R K Laxman Museum, Pune

June 29, 2022 2 comments

R K Laxman Museum, Pune

Museum of India’s most popular cartoonists

Also see: FAM Trip of Pune

Rasipuram Krishnaswami Laxman (1921 – 2015), or simply R K Laxman was a well-known cartoonist and illustrator, best known for his famous creation The Common Man. R K Laxman Museum is located in Balwadi, Pune contains almost 35,000 of his sketches.

Statue of Common Man at the entrance of R K Laxman Museum, Pune

Statue of Common Man at the entrance of R K Laxman Museum, Pune

This museum cum art gallery is a project of Pune Municipal Corporation. It was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in March 2022. The museum tells the story of Laxman and his career. The story of how his pen and brush along with his sense of humor have turned him into a legend.

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Canning House, the last remains of the failed Canning Port Project

Canning House, 24 Parganas (South)

The last remains of the failed Canning Port Project

Since the late 17th century Calcutta (now Kolkata) has flourished as a flourishing river port and contributed a chunk of the trade of East India Company. It also served as the Capital of British India and was considered the second city of the British empire.

Canning House, Canning, 24 Parganas (South)

Canning House, Canning, 24 Parganas (South)

Plan for a new port: But In the early 1850s it was found that the river was first silting up and the East India Company decided to make a new port further down the river. Surveyors were sent deep into the Sundarban area and they finally came up with a spot on the banks of the Matla River.

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Shinde Chhatri, Memorial of Mahadji Shinde (Scindia)

Shinde Chhatri, Pune

Memorial of Mahadji Shinde (Scindia)

Also see: FAM Trip of Pune

Shinde Chhatri at Wanawadi in Pune is a memorial or cenotaph dedicated to the 18th century Maratha military leader Mahadji Shinde who served as the commander-in-chief of the Maratha army under the Peshwas from 1760 to 1780.

Shinde Chhatri at Wanawadi in Pune

Shinde Chhatri (left) and Shiva Temple (right) at Wanawadi in Pune

Mahadaji Shinde (23 December 1730 – 12 February 1794) later known as Mahadji Scindia was a Maratha statesman and ruler of Ujjain in Central India. Mahadaji was instrumental in resurrecting Maratha power in North India after the Third Battle of Panipat in 1761, and rose to become a trusted lieutenant of the Peshwa Madhavrao I.

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Monuments of Green Park, Delhi

Monuments of Green Park, Delhi

Exploring beyond Hauz Khas Park

Delhi is literally littered with monuments. Tombs and mosque with crumbling domes and minerates can be found in the most unlikely of places including municipality parks and traffic islands.

William Dalrymple, The Last Mughal
…. of the great cities of the world, only Rome, Istambul and Cairo can even begin to rival Delhi for the sheer volume and density of historic remains.

Green Park, an upscale affluent neighborhood in South Delhi is the most unlikely place for historical ruins. Interestingly this posh Delhi neighborhood houses as many as 5 archaeological sites protected by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI).

Collage of monuments of Green Park, Delhi

Collage of monuments of Green Park, Delhi
Top row left to right: Dadi Poti ki Gambud and Biran ka Gambud
Bottom row left to right: Bara Khamba, Chhoti Gumti and Sakri Gumti

These five medieval monuments share space with high rises and bungalow-like apartments of a posh Delhi locality. All the five sites are located within walking distance and can be combined with a visit to the nearby Hauz Khas Park, housing a medieval tank and several other monuments.

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Memorial of APJ Abdul Kalam, Rameswaran

April 13, 2022 2 comments

Memorial of APJ Abdul Kalam

Rameswaran

Also see: FAM Trip of Tamil Nadu

Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam or simply APJ Abdul Kalam (15 October 1931 – 27 July 2015) was the 11 th President of India (25 July 2002 – 25 July 2007). Known as the “People’s President” and the “Missile man of India” Kalam came from a humble background.

Memorial of APJ Abdul Kalam, Rameswaran

Memorial of APJ Abdul Kalam, Rameswaran

He was born in Rameswaram, an important Hindu pilgrimage in Pamban Island (also known as Rameswaran Island). Kalam came from a very humble background but excelled in academics. He went on to study aerospace engineering in Madras Institute of Technology (IIT).

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