personal and travels

A Laptop that docks without wires

December 24, 2007 Author: bluegreen butterfly | Filed under: Computers, technology

R400The R400 is the first Laptop that can connect to any peripheral – printer, monitor, speakers, anything with a USB plug – wirelessly. Just plug them into the docking station. It communicates with the laptop through a new wireless technology called ultra-wideband, which carries video, sound and data faster than Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. Signals can travel short distances with nearly the same quality as they would have over cables.

Elephant ride

December 21, 2007 Author: admin | Filed under: arts and culture, India, Photography, Travels
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From May to July last year hubby asked if I had seen any elephant around Mumbai streets. I had not when it is an everyday street scene. He said that he’s going to arrange a ride for me. A year and five months later here we head towards the elephant yard the tour guide brought us into (the hotel said the day before that they do not have elephant rides anymore for one time the animal got wild and crushed some tourist, that was heavy scary huh, but the tour guide found us one that still offers for 500 Rupees). I did not dream this ride, but for the sake of experience, I did and gladly I really enjoyed the smooth ride on the eary beast (hanoy xa, lol).

Indian elephantelephant ride
elephant rideelephant ride
elephant ride
elephant rideelephant ride
elephant ride

The Taj from across the river

December 21, 2007 Author: admin | Filed under: arts and culture, India, Travels

It was a full day for us, and that afternoon we headed to a taste for Taj, viewing it at the back from across the river Yamuna. The Taj is perfectly symmetrical in all four sides so you will have the same view from whatever angle.

Taj view

View of the Taj

Way to baby Taj

December 21, 2007 Author: admin | Filed under: arts and culture, India, Photography, Travels

Our next stop over was to the Itmud-ud-daula known as Baby Taj. The main gate is made of red sandstone, with a double storied structure which has got inlay work of white marble. Towards it and towards Yamuna, a beautiful Baradary is there, in which below there are some rooms which were provided with curtains of Khas-khas and were used as a cool retreat from the summer heat. The upper chambers were used as bathrooms by the Royal Ladies. The ceiling was decorated with gold and silver, were scrapped away by the Jats during their short occupation of Agra, but were repaired later on by lord Curzon. But many original things in there had been long stolen by the people.

tomb gateBaby Taj

Itmud-ud-daula was built by Empress Noor Jahan in the memory of her father Mirza Ghiyas Beg. It is basically a tomb, which is of very peculiar interest as it was the fore-runner of of the Taj and of the many designs of it were made in the Taj. It is the first Mughal Architecture before the existence of Taj, which was made of white marble. It was the first Mughal building, totally constructed of marble and is the first building in which extensive use of “Pietra Dura” has been made, which is characteristic of the Taj. The marble walls are decorated with inscriptions from the holy Quran, cypress tress, wine flasks and jugs carved on marble, are very beautiful. In the center of the hall are the cenotaphs of Itmud-ud-Daula and his wife Asmat-Ul-Nisa. The rectangular shaped tomb of white marble is enclosed by a beautiful garden fenced by high walls on three sides and the fourth side opens towards river Yamuna, which gives a beautiful view of the city.

framed tomb
in baby taj

Social classes in India

December 21, 2007 Author: admin | Filed under: arts and culture, India, Personal, Travels

Our tour guide has been very nice and informative, a real tour guide who knows them all a tourist will ask. The hotel driver that drives for us was also a quiet guy who drives good. (In India vehicles are right-hand driven; and “horn please, OK”.) Anyway. It was already passed noon so we have to eat at some Pizza Hut place and get a good lunch. I wanted us four to eat together, hubby and me, the tour guide and the driver, and I kept asking for the driver but he did not get inside. Right, hubby later told me that the tour guide, might have not wanted the driver to join us, as there is still in this place awareness and sensitivity of social status.

Demonstration of inlays

December 21, 2007 Author: admin | Filed under: arts and culture, India, Photography, Travels
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At Oswald Emporium we stopped by after the tour to the Agra Red Fort to see the demonstration of inlays. It is not an ordinary work their expertise in shaping those delicate semi-precious stones are obtained by years f experience, and they actually come the families or descendants of those who who build the Taj Mahal and the Fort. See they still used some conventional method that had been used by the 13th century builders for there is no equivalent apparatus in today’s technology that can do the same precision and ease of the equipment. See how wise the old age is. Below is a close-up of one side of the octagon showing how the small stones were inlaid.
inlaid stonesstone cutting

This is a finished product of marble cut octagonally to depict the pattern used in Taj Mahal with thousands of very small semi-precious stones inlaid to create the final design.

inlaid marble

Carvings, inlaids and technology

December 21, 2007 Author: admin | Filed under: arts and culture, India, Photography, Travels
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These are some of the stone carvings and semi-precious stones inlaid in the columns and walls of red sand stone they imported from Rajasthan and of marble stone, known as the hardest kind. Thousands of their workers came from Persia (Iran) and Turkey who were experts in stone works. All imported materials were transported by camels, and I can say that it is pretty fast transport, see my camel ride experience.


Their type of marble is the hardest kind yet they had carved into it shapes and patterns to accommodate their designs. These marble stone were crystallize, and with proper light, will reflect light from behind thus making it look like transparent. Some of the in laid semi-precious stones also reflects back light.

stone inlayspalace carvings

Upon touring around the fort perimeter and numbers of palaces and buildings, they seemed like just ordinary ones except for the delicate works of stone, but checking everything, you can see the wisdom of old. This window is just an ordinary closed window as seen from outside but when inside, it serves as a natural air conditioning that it really sucks air and makes the room cold and maintain it that way as it can’t go out. It is even more powerful that the modern fans. On the right, I didn’t know that there is someone on my back, lol. On the first photo, it is a well that used to collect the waters which cool down every room in summer, how they cooled them down is through their hollow stone walls circulating the water around with slaves and workers pumping the water up to the palaces. For me it is just simply, amazing.

natural acinlaid work

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