Red and Green in Kochi

Hammer-and-sickle in Kochi, the largest city of Kerala, a state that has elected several Marxist-Leninist governments The view from the train window on the trip between Thiruvananthapuram, the capital of India’s Kerala State, and Kochi, its biggest city, is one of nearly continuous development. As I looked out the open windows I kept waiting for […]

Victoria Regina vs. Technicolor Hippies

“My grandfather was a barber to the British,” says this umpteenth-generation barber in Dalhousie, India In India, Victorian England is alive and well with all its stuffy floweriness and chastity belts. Picture yourself in a café painted in sombre greens. A Brahmin gentleman at the table next to yours takes Queen & Lion brand snuff […]

The Other Side of Goa

Most people’s image of Goa involves a combination of beaches, drugs, all-night raves, and burnt out hippies. Few come here to take in the Portuguese heritage of Panaji, its capital city. This is the side of Goa that captured my attention.

Life vs. Bombay Taxi-Wallah

[youtube]FJaVR7nJXX8[/youtube] Taxi drivers, it’s safe to say, have attained iconic status in the annals of urban folklore. They’re the embodiment of a city’s wiry energy and gritty determination to survive. They are strange, slightly crazy and defiantly individualistic. Surely, it takes a special character to drive strangers around for hours on end, competing with thousands […]

Looking Back on Huxley and Colonial Bombay

Most people are poor judges when it comes to architecture from one generation back. Take Montreal’s Place Bonaventure or the Concordia University Hall Building—some of you may appreciate these buildings, but most people don’t. I am considered a weirdo when I argue that Quebec City’s “le bunker” (also known as “le calorifère”) is an interesting […]