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    All These Colors Tour: India Part 13

    Wednesday, September 26, 2012
    Kolkata, India

    Eye see you, says a parked van on Royd Street in Kolkata, India.

    Get your eyes tested on Wellesley Street in Kolkata, India.

    For the past couple of nights, I’ve suffered from insomnia, and thus I didn’t wake up until the late afternoon again today–just in time to go out for a quick photo mission before sundown. I headed East on Royd Street a few blocks to see a part of Chowringhee I’ve never visited. After hanging a left on Wellesley Street, I proceeded North into a cornucopia of confusion that spilled out commotion in all directions. On this street, odd-looking trams and buses with ornate window frames battled for space with vintage yellow taxi cabs, autorickshaws, comically overloaded bicycle rickshaws, and throngs of pedestrians.

    Green domes on Wellesley Street in Kolkata, India.

    Next, I wound my way through some curved, narrow back alleys, where, between towering soot-covered buildings, all kinds of street stalls and markets were in full swing, selling everything under the sun: raw meat, fruit and vegetables, tools, toys. I even passed by some live poultry and livestock, which is kind of odd to see in an urban setting. After hanging a left on another main thoroughfare (that I couldn’t determine the name of even after consulting a map), I became overwhelmed by an unbelievably dense maelstrom of colors, textures, smells, and sounds. The biggest smile spread across my face, and I was simultaneously almost moved to tears. India will get inside your soul that way, if you let it.

    A small machine shop on Wellesley Street in Kolkata, India.

    The whole city of Kolkata is a kinetic sculpture of the highest order. Surreal-looking psychedelic Hindu signs. Swarms of traffic composed of every type of conveyance darting in multiple directions dominated by huge hulking buses steamrolling their way through everything. Smoke wafting from sidewalk food stalls and rustic rooftops alike. Hindu and Muslim ladies ambling by in their colorful, full-length garb. Small shops bursting outward onto the sidewalks with billions of tiny knick-knacks, services, snacks and treats.

    A grand entryway to someplace special in Kolkata, India.

    Locals kick back inside a Hindu shrine / potato shack in Kolkata, India.

    I was stopped in my tracks by a neat little machine shop where some guys made motorcycle parts. They were really friendly and posed for a photo when I asked. Ditto another old guy who was kicking back inside an odd, large open room in a back alley that looked like a Hindu shrine full of sacks of potatoes. As darkness arrived, I heaved myself through the narrow lane confines of Hogg Market and New Market over to the good ol’ dependable Blue Sky Cafe, where the air-con is always on, and the food is cheap and good.

    Roll over photos for captions.
    Words and photos ©2012 Arcane Candy.

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