Friday, 20 February 2015

Day 38 (India): Madurai

A bus took me – and about 400 others, most crammed standing in the aisle – down off the hills to the big city of Madurai. It's famous for its huge temple complex in the middle of the town, landmarked by four massive towers (pic)...

...which, as usual for Hindu temples, contain an astonishing number of incredibly detailed statues of deities. These appear to the patron saints of 1980s footballers, to judge by their tight shorts.

The Indian love of multicolours extends to their food. This is the thali I had for lunch: a sort of individual buffet of dips, curries, sauces and chutneys, with unlimited supplies of flatbread and rice (pic). You could almost mistake it for a painter's palette.

I haven't seen bicycle rickshaws on this trip in India until now. (They used to be everywhere, but have been replaced by three-wheeled motorised ones.) There are several in Madurai, however. Whether it's a tourist thing (the place is full of domestic visitors) I don't know, but there are certainly lots of cargo bikes hauling mighty loads (pic). I've moved the odd fridge by bike trailer, too, hence our exchange of smiles, the brotherhood of trailer-bikers.

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