Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Series : Faces of India

It's not just about motorcycle, the roads and the scenic backdrop for your profile photo.
It is also about the people you met along the way...

Curious children of tea plantation workers.

A plantation worker pruning the Camellia sinensis or ‘tea plant’.

A orange gatherer who is very delighted to meet me, as I’m one of ‘her own kind’.
Here she is conscious about her look as she is not in her best dress for a photo.

A kind orange farmer, who offered us a free ‘pluck all you can’ orange fest. 'those here on the floor is already sold' he said.

The farmer’s child helping out in the field.

A child from the Adi tribe.

Mother and child. Adi tribe.

Inspiring the Adi children to travel and see the world beyond their territory.

A Dao (pronounced ‘dhao') wielding Adi elder. A few decades earlier, he will be hunting for my head.

An Adi man with a dao, an essential multi-purpose working tools now rather than a weapon.

When I grow up…

After the Adi hosted us on a Christmas night, we share our Christmas joy (Santa Claus version only)

A family on 3-up waiting to cross the wooden bridge on bike.
The baby boy is suspecting whether we could make it across without wetting our padded pant.

It’s winter time. wood gathering for cooking and heat to keep warm is a daily task for the tribeswomen.

The two tribal woman near Ranaghat, who sold me the ‘Hottest natural chilli in the World’ - Bhoot Jolokia or Ghost Chilli (its 900.5 times hotter than Tabasco)
Two handful at 10 rupees for an hour of oral organsm (a few hours for some non-chilli eater)

An Idu tribe woman, at a pitstop for us riders.

Mr.Jibi Pulu, a Mishmi tribesman and our host for two nights.
While most of his fellow villagers have converted to Hinduism, Christianity and Buddhism, Jibu insist on maintaining his faith of Donyi-Polo , an indigenous religions of animism. A religion that predate Buddhism in his ancestral home in Tibet.
A dialogue session on this religion gave us a very valuable insight to the essence of this practice, to live harmoniously with Mother Nature who provides for all the living sentient beings. A teaching where other organized religions failed to emphasis or addressed.
Upon his death, according to Jibu, his spirit will return to Lhasa, his ancestral home, via the migration path of his ancestors passing through the present day Myanmar.

Two wary Nepali kids. Felt sorry that their house was accidently burn by their farming father while clearing the field (together with the Marijuana plant and seed.. oh well!)
Mud covered house will provide a better fire resistant.
This is development, upgrade, an evolution!

Attracted by the light and songs in the middle of darkness. We found ourselves gatecrashed into a new year party in front of a chapel of the tea plantation workers of Assami origin.
Our only form of communications - ‘Hello’ , many handshakes and few smiles.

The last of Arunachal Pradesh, beyond the border guards we are relunctantly heading to Assam and back to the ‘Mainland’

Our support vehicle driver. if you think 2 wheels is tough, try 4!

Our Chef and Sous Chef. I have never eaten so much onions as a salad by itself in my life. The variety of indian cuisine and especially the momos are excellent, worth a few diahorrea.

Tapir Darang, the most popular Adi and our local guide for this region.

He also discovered at least 20 WWII downed planes and help the US family to retrieve the remains of the love ones to be sent home.

There are still at least few hundred crash sites remained to be found.

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