India’s Northeast: Scenes and Scenery, June Edition

I’ve got this problem nowadays where I’m so far behind on sharing my pictures and stories that I don’t even carry my camera around anymore.  This is a terrible shame, since in India one is guaranteed to experience the grotesque, the hilarious, and the inconceivable on just about every outing, and whether or not I ever get around to writing about them, every photo prompts a host of such memories to come rushing back.  In a few years (rough guess) I’ll be living a normal life working for an NGO in some American city or settled down on some farm somewhere in the global south, and I’ll click through my old photo collection only to find day- or week-long gaps where I didn’t snap a single picture.  A whole chunk of my life, all these experiences that I earned through hard work and diligent saving, all these places that lots of people would love to visit if only they had the time and freedom…these things shouldn’t be taken for granted or treated with such nonchalance.  Hopefully unloading a few months’ worth of photos out into the interweb will help me overcome this nomad’s anomie and get back on top of my game.

Thanks to all of you for being my helpers in this little therapy session.

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First group photo in India!  We made it!

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Sunrise at Tengnoupal, altitude 1500m or so.  Our first mountain since a month beforehand when we crossed from Thailand into Myanmar.

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Glorious blue skies, puffy clouds, thick forests, and smooth roads on the way down to Imphal.  Gotta love those moments where everything just feels so easy.

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Thanks for the permission.

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How not to treat your narcoleptic friends.

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Pabung had a room for us, but there were too many mosquitoes and I prefer to sleep out under the stars anyway when the conditions are right.

For the record, my Big Sky is at least as high-tech as either of the devices sandwiching it.

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Making time for the little things.

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Harassing some local ladies.

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Hints of unrest.

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How’d that get there?

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First Hindu shrine.

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First instructions on how to use a toilet.

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Yeah I’ll take two!

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Nagaland: India’s Bible Belt.

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If there’s one type of photo I can’t resist, it’s the old “picturesque village sitting above rice terraces.”

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Group photo with the students from a “hostel” (like a boarding school, minus the school) in Makhan where we spent the night.

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Yeah, women, stop distracting men and causing accidents!  Why do you make us all such bad drivers?

Someone at the Border Roads Organization has the kickass job of making pithy, awkward PSAs to be posted every second or third kilometer.  Other favorites include “If married, divorce speed” and “After whiskey, driving risky.”

Chris has a whole collection at his “Cool Story BRO, Tell It Again!” post.

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Kashmir = north, Kanyakumari = south, Kutch = west, Kohima = east.

I think the separatists and insurgents would beg to differ.

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Kohima, capital of Nagaland, spread out over four hilltops.

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A very insensitive leper impression.

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A crowd gathers around our parked bikes while we attend a press conference in Dimapur.  Organized for us by David Kire, couchsurfing host and vice president of the State Bank of India’s northeast division.


Yeah front page!

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Mirko gets philosophical.

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Lolo, a local Nagamese cyclists, showing off his cycle levitation trick.

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Majuli Island, in the middle of the Brahmaputra river.

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Joy riding around Majuli.

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Last photo with before parting ways.  🙁

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Herding cats = difficult.

Pulling a traumatized cow out of the river = much more so.

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No room for our bikes on this boat.

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Waiting for the ferry.

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Evil Knievel, eat your heart out.

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Tea garden near Dejoo, Assam.  I’ve heard talk of mechanized ones, but in every one I’ve seen so far, the tea has been picked by hand. Wage = $2/day.

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The tea plants, particularly in the lowlands, need plenty of shade; if they’re exposed to the sun at temperatures above 35C, they’ll stop photosynthesizing and start scorching.

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Camping spot in a guest room behind the church in Lichi.

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Rainy morning.

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Terraces near Yazuli.  Or was it Yachali?

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Terraces in a riverbed on the way up to Ziro.

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Rooster spotted on our tour of the Apatani villages around Ziro.

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Apatani Village, Ziro.

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Dam / hydro project near Potin.

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Sunset at Midpu.

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Night falls over Bisnawath Chariali.

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Free shower from a busted pipe.

Boy was June a good month.

What a life I’m living.

When I’m bored sitting around a hotel room in the rain, nothing is more gratifying than going back through all my pictures and reliving all the fun and hijinks I was getting into just a little while back.  Makes me look forward to hitting the road again.

September, bring it on!

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3 Responses to India’s Northeast: Scenes and Scenery, June Edition

  1. Mom says:

    Carry your camera! You never know what you’ll see or experience. And your book will be so much better if there aren’t any gaps in your timeline.

  2. mingyulee says:

    사진기 어따 잃어버린겨? 사진기 가지고 다녀라 쉐끼야