Walking in the Bagh
Kolkata Travel Blog› entry 21 of 32 › view all entries
I had a whole nice blog and I completely lost it, so now I start over (sigh). I found the South Park Street Cemetary which was a fantastic place. It's very quiet and isolated with these very old tombs everywhere. I was the only visitor so after walking around by myself for a bit, the caretaker joined me and told me the stories behind many of the graves.
I then went to find the very well-hidden Motherhouse, home of Mother Theresa. You had to take off your shoes to enter and I was a bit embarrassed because my sandals stain my feet making them look much dirtier than they are. They had a small little museum with everything from her plates to used needles that they gave her injections with. There was a service going on while I was there so there was constant singing which really added to the ambience.
I then took a human-powered rickshaw to the metro station (mostly because I wasn't sure how to get there). On the way, we passed a Muslim festival where they were having a parade, dancing, and music in the street which was interesting to watch. The metro was very easy to understand but because it was rush hour it was crammed with people and standing room only. Thankfully it was only a few stops for me. I then followed Rudradeb's great directions to get the shared autorickshaw that dropped me off directly in front of his apartment. When I got there, he had found my blog already from that day so already knew everything I'd done which was funny.
Next day, Rudradeb was so sick he didn't go to work, poor guy. I followed his directions to try and buy tickets for the Dover Lane Music Conference, but the guy's English was so poor I wasn't sure what I'd be buying. I then struggled to find a taxi to take me across town, eventually a crowd of 8 men all gave directions to a taxi driver. There directions seemed pretty good, but I think it was farther than the driver was expecting because he stopped for additional directions three times and was always told keep going straight.
The botanical gardens are huge, it took me over an hour to walk from one entrance to the other. It borders the river and had several ponds within where people were boating. It is also home to the world's largest banyan tree, one of the oddest looking trees I've ever seen. It's difficult to describe, but essentially it has what looks like regular branches, but the branches off these main branches go straight down into the ground vertically. It appears as if there are many tree trunks all with the same branch. I was walking through it for awhile before I realized it was one tree and was the tree I was looking for.
I then went over to the BBD Bagh area to try my own walking tour. It was difficult getting my bearings at first, but eventually I figured it out.
Once back at the apartment, Rudradeb and Anindita (hopefully I spelled it right) took me for some quick shopping before dinner. They took me to the Tollygunge club, one of the top 20 country clubs in the world and it's easy to see why.