Man wearing grey hoodie cycles an empty rickshaw in New Delhi, India

36/ 100 The Marudhar Express Part 1 – Choosing a Train

We found the long distance trains in India to be brilliant, mostly. We used them a few times on our trips across the enormous country and generally they were punctual, comfortable and efficient. One of them, though, was not any of those things and there is so much to mention about one single (very long) train trip that I will have to break it down into smaller chunks.
Three children wearing backpacks walking to school alongside a very busy road near Pushkar in India

35/ 100 Pea Shoots

The very young children with their giant rucksacks are walking to school along the main NH58 trunk road from Ajmer. In Pushkar this was perfectly normal and literally hundreds of children were walking along the very busy and typically chaotic road with them. These children were most definitely not going to the Lawrence and Mayo Public school advertised on the hoarding in front of them. Those students had very fancy, and out of place, Mercedes minibuses to drive them to school.
Man carrying a milk churn in the early morning sunlight of India

34/ 100 Be Careful with the Apple

As with most days in India, we were woken at sunrise by the morning songs of various creatures. Cockerels, dogs, cattle and children all seemed to enjoy vocally welcoming the first sunshine of the day. I wanted to get out and about to capture some of the low sun (great for photographers) and generally have a nosey around.
Monkey sitting on the wall of the Galta Gi Temple in Jaipur

33/ 100 The Photo I wish I had Taken

We’d had an eventful journey from Varanasi to Agra and so Fiona and I decided along the way to check into a nice hotel for a bit of luxury. We definitely aren't shy of budget rooms but we were tired and grimy and needed a break. We ended up in really quite a nice colonial-era hotel with a walled garden that offered a tiny bit of respite from the noise and chaos of the outside world.
Group of brightly dressed children in India.

32/ 100 Dinner Crisis

I hadn’t been feeling so well prior to visiting the house of our ever smiling Tuk Tuk driver Gaffar. Still, this was India so I was not at all surprised. Whether it was some bad Kachori, or simply the relentless spicy food for three meals a day, I shall never know. The day we visited his house I still felt pretty rough.
A lone dog sits in the street in India as a Tuk Tull passes by

31/ 100 Sleeping with the Goats

Having been shown Gaffar’s new rooftop toilet, the tour of his house was complete. We still had plenty of questions for him though. One of which was why there were so many blankets and cushions up on the roof, even though he had already said they never go up there in the daytime?
Dog in India sleeping in front of an old sign that reads 'dinner'

30/ 100 Rooftop Toilet

Once we had been given the tour of the downstairs part of Tuk Tuk driver Gaffar’s house, where he lived with his extended family, we were taken to the roof to see his pride and joy. We had no idea what we would find up there, but he was very excited to show us his big surprise.

29/ 100 Gaffar Ali

Leaving a railway station in India is often a hugely overwhelming situation. You know you will need to get some form of onward transport, but the sheer volume of eager suitors waiting for their chance at a fare is hard to cope with.

28/ 100 Buying the Flame of Death

Hindu people are cremated at Varanasi 24 hours a day, with women being strongly discouraged from attending the cremation itself. The principle of creation is that the body's ties with the Earth are broken, sins are burned away and the spirit can achieve Moshka, or enlightenment. 
Cows and the Crematorium

27/ 100 Cows and the Crematorium

We were told that if you are a Hindu, dying and being cremated in the Indian city of Varanasi, on the banks of the river Ganges, is possibly the best way to end your physical existence. So much so, in fact, that people nearing the end of their lives relocate to the town to be sure that they will be able to have the cremation ritual they want.
Pollution. A camel amongst the traffic in Jaipur, India

25/ 100 Pollution

We were there in February when it was fairly cool, but the air was still thick and smoggy. The sky had an ominous yellow tinge and every surface is filthy with a layer of black sooty dust.
A far-away view of the Taj Mahal, seen from the Red Fort in Agra where Shah Jahan lived his final days.

24/ 100 Shah Jahan

Can you see the building in the far distance, next to the massively polluted Yamuna River on the left, that’s the Taj Mahal.