Sunday, April 28, 2013

Kolkata Metropolis


Kolkata is known to be bursting with an overwhelming 10 million people, Kolkata is busy and bustling. Something is always happening whether it is soccer, religious celebrations, concerts. It is located in a zone insane from the point of view of climate, including the Hooghly River, a creek and a marshy swamp. The location was chosen by the founder Job Charnock, the East India Company, for safety reasons, as it was surrounded by water.


From the river, the flight was easy. And also for the richness of the earth, then mostly cotton and jute. From small village, Calcutta has become a dynamic city, the cultural center of India. Everybody comes to Calcutta by air, which is much more convenient to get there by train. In fact, to understand from the outset the attitude of the city should get to the historic station of Howrah. It's a bit as comfortable off the plane, but arrive by ship or boat and get into the caldera well it's another thing.

They are friendly, and just off the square find hundreds thousands seem of yellow taxis wait for customers. You go up and immediately cross the Howrah Bridge. The station lies on the River is now behind us. Calcutta is the only city truly British India, and became the capital of the British Raj. At the end of 19 century was the second largest city in the empire after London. Getting to the station is a wonderful start.

Remember that Calcutta is the city of Tagore poet, writer, playwright and philosopher belonged to an ancient and wealthy family originally from Bengal. Another important character of Calcutta was Swami Vivekananda, one of the most famous and important masters of Vedanta a spiritual tradition within Hinduism and yoga. He was the chief disciple of Ramakrishna, founder of the monastic order of Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission.

It is a prominent figure in the history of reform movements. It is very interesting to visit the mission and the temple, both on the Hooghly River. Perhaps the best-known of Calcutta for us Westerners is Mother Teresa of Calcutta, who, in fact, has done an incredible job. It was Mother Teresa to found the first leper colonies around the city and to welcome the dying in the street.

Calcutta is a city not just to see, but to discover. Interestingly, even the university area. In College Street are hundreds of shops selling second-hand books. Close by is a former theater became a bar, where students congregate during the day and the professors and intellectuals in the evening. The place has not been painted since the days of Queen Victoria, but at least the coffee is very good. Why it's worth a ride a bird, but savor Calcutta for what it is: the former capital of the British Raj, the center of intellectual and religious reform.

Calcutta has a soul ... but you have to find it!

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