The Taj Mahal

The Taj Mahal

What's best than visiting the symbol of love, the Taj Mahal with the love of your life? Newly developed Yamuna expressway is definitely a boon for people living in Delhi and want to visit The Taj Mahal, Agra. We left in the morning and as soon as we hit the expressway, I thanked God that I will not have to play with trucks anymore and I could almost fly my car. In just 2 hours, we reached Agra, Uttar Pradesh and coudn't wait to go to Taj Mahal. On arrival, we were asked to remove our shoes or we could wear polythene bags on our shoes to avoid the white marble getting dirty. We hired a guide who taught us some interesting facts about the Taj Mahal. 

Are We There yet?

Road trip

Whenever you plan a trip with friends or office colleagues or with family members, there is always one person who keeps bugging you while you are on your way to the destination by continuously asking "Are we there?". They irritate so much that you feel like saying "yes we are here but, we just love to sit in the car and circle around our destination". Of course we are not there yet.

They will keep poking you with same question again and again at different intervals. Sometimes, you just wish to stop the car and tell them "Yea, here we are" and as soon as they get off the car, drive away and continue to your destination.

As someone wise has said that travel is more than having a destination in mind, more than reaching to a destination. I wish, everyone could think like that and enjoy the joy of traveling. The roads are more fun than the actual destination, music and wheels, the views, the road side restaurants, fresh air... what else do you need? It is a perfect way to discover yourself, to rejuvenate, to lose your tensions. 

When you feel tired, just stop aside while driving and relax for a while, watching fresh farms, cool breeze. I am sure you will fall in love with it.

Incredible India! Indeed

Atulya Bharat
Incredible India
While I continue to explore length and breadth of India, I met an interesting man who inspired me to write this post. He helped me to rediscover India with a different perspective, with its great history. He told me few interesting facts which  made me dig further to awaken to the below amazing facts about India.

  • India is world's oldest, largest and continuous civilization.
  • Number Zero was invented in India by Aryabhatta.
  • Plastic Surgery was first performed in India by Acharya Sushrut in 600BCE.
  • Nagarjuna was world's first wizard of Chemical Science which has its roots in 100BCE.
  • When most of the cultures were only nomadic forest dwellers over 5000 years ago, Indians established Harappan culture in Sindhu Valley (Indus Valley Civilization).
  • Sanskrit is mother of all the European Languages. Matra in Sanskrit becomes mother in English, bhatra becomes brother, trikonamiti becomes trigonometry.  Sanskrit is the most suitable language for computer software - a report in Forbes magazine July 1987.
  • Nalanda university, located in Bihar, India, was one of the world's first residential universities. The great library of Nalanda University was so vast that it is reported to have burned for three months after the invaders set fire to it.
  • Chess was invented in India.
  • India has largest pool of scientists, doctors and engineers in the world.
  • India is largest English speaking nation. 
  • According to Tom Standage of The Economist, India currently has daily newspaper circulation of 110 million copies which get published in 21 different languages.
  • India is the only country other than US and Japan, who has built a super computer indeigenously.
  • The Baily Bridge is the greatest elevation in the world. It is is located in the Himalayan mountains, in the Ladakh Valley in the state of Jammu and Kashmir.
  • Yoga has its origin in India and is existed for more than 5000 years.
  • India was one of the richest countries until the British rule in the early 17th Century. Christopher Columbus, attracted by India's wealth, had come looking for a sea route to India when he discovered America by mistake.
  • Acharya Kanad was the pioneer expounder of realism, law of causation and the atomic theory nearly 2500 years before John Dalton.
  • Acharya Charak has been crowned as the Father of Medicine
  • Martial Arts was first originated in India, and later spread to Asia by Buddhist missionaries.
  • Kumbh mela is considered to be world's largest peaceful gathering with over 100 million people visiting in 2013.
Incredible India, isn't it?

A Man and His Motorboat

A man and his motorboat
Lake Taupo
There's nothing better to click than an image during sunset. You can capture different shades of the sun, play with different colors to get your perfect shot. What more a camera needs when sunlight blends with water to generate a soothing effect which relaxes the mind and is a treat for the eyes.

Image taken at Lake Taupo, New Zealand.

Oh! Here Comes the Toll Road

Toll booth
No matter where you go, there they are! I can not even remember a single road trip where I have not paid toll tax. 

Well, toll roads are common all over the world and the concept is not just few years old. They are privately or publicly built roads for which the user of the road pays a toll tax for the cost of the road construction and the maintenance without burdening non-users of the road. 

Did you know that toll roads are 2700 years old? In India, the Arthasastra notes the use of tolls before the 4th century BC. Under the regime of Ashurbanipal, travelers paid toll taxes for using Susa–Babylon highway. Few Germanic tribes used to charge toll from travelers across mountain passes. Tolls were also used in Roman empire in 14th and 15th century.

Here is another interesting fact that toll taxes were also charged for the use of river as well. In 14th century, Castle Loevestein in the Netherlands, was built at a strategic point where two rivers met, and charged toll on the boats sailing along the river.

With all due respect to the history of toll tax, I hope it can be eliminated specially where it leads to long traffic queues to save time and gas.

Did you like this trivia about Toll roads?

That Feeling When You Are About To Jump!

Bungee Jumping
Well, You know that feeling you get when you're standing at a high place with a sudden urge to not jump? It's very easy to say you want to do it, but when you are actually standing there, about to jump, your entire life comes in front of you; specially the moment when you decided to go for bungee jumping. You may want to reconsider your decision or the checklist where you pinned bungee jumping as a must to-do thing. But once you actually do it, I am sure you won't regret it. Face your fear, kill your fear.

Thumbs up!

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