|Fatehpur Sikri, Uttar Pradesh, India||Week 141 December 12th 2013|
And so towards Fatehpur Sikri.
We finally found a large vodafone store in Agra. About $3.50 for unlimited internet for a month.
Our best deal yet on internet.
| An oft repeated scene for India. It always looks like its
about to be chaos as the barriers lift.
But no. There's a pattern. There's enough consideration shown that the traffic moves.
Not as aggressive as it looks.
Colonnades on the outer wall to Fatehpur Sikri.
The capital of the Mughal Empire for a few years. Before it was moved to Agra as water supply became a problem.
We found a bit about the water in the Agra Red Fort. A three tiered system of tanks through which river water was lifted.
Agra Fort fell when those besieging the fort cut off the river supply.
| As near as we got to the Jama Masjid mosque.
The entrance is through the Buland Darwaza (victory gate) celebrating Akbar's victory at Ghujarat.
We headed to the Palace Buildings.
The courtyard of Jodhbai's Palace. Shabistan-i-Iqbal.
Nothing to do with Jodhbai, it was Akbar's principal Haramsara
| The rectangular construction with flat roofs (of thick
sandstone slabs) is a bit more evident than most places.
The vertical partitions are also sandstone slabs.
We are walking around a loop.
So we haven't got to the sign that tells us what the building is.
| But we know this is an imperial residence.
The Diwan Khana-i-Khass and Khwabgah.
There's a discrete passageway from the haramsara.
| Some evidence of the stone carvings.
It occurs to us that the sort of construction we are seeing may well have evolved from something made in wood.
|The vertical panels are a bit more obvious.|
The Anup Talao.
Translated as Peerless Pool.
For imperial amusement.
The Turkish Sultana's House.
Built before 1575.
|Known for the carving on the sandstone.|
| Escaping from more carvings we encountered the gardener.
We were a little fed up on the way into the citadel from persistent kids wanting money and persistent guides wanting to guide.
The gardener's line was to try and sell us seeds for the cockscomb flowers. Aussie agriculture would have a field day!
We discovered later that the flowers are used to treat diarrhea and the seeds chest complaints.
Just what we need.
| There's that building again ....
Diwan-i-Khass, the Jewel House.
| Internally it has a central pillar with bridges to it.
|We wondered if the lawns were a modern affectation of the Archeological Survey of India or original.|
|The treasury has corbels and struts to extend the roof span.|
|And some curved struts in a different room.|
| The Panch Mahal.
It needed 84 columns for the ground floor.
| Maryam's mansion.
We are beginning to wonder how liveable some of the pavillions were.
What they looked like when inhabited.
| At last. Signs of a mortice and tenon.
But alas, no.
Part of the very extensive water supply.
Channeling it throughout the complex.
There are lots of places where water would have appeared through a wall and flowed across the ground in a channel.
But where did the water come from?
| Akbar indulged in executions with the help of an elephant
to trample miscreants.
This is the elephant gate.
Not quite sure but possibly erected when his favourite elephant died.
| The lower haramsara to right and left.
Deserted now, we'll have to read elsewhere what life was like when occupied.
| Its sometimes referred to as a camel or other animal
We read that the stone hitches may be associated with holding curtains used to partition the area.
We looked in vain for the other three for the remaining untehtered corners of curtains.
We are camped in the car park of the Goverdhan Hotel. Nothing particularly special, we'll move on tomorrow.
|Keoladeo National Park, Rajasthan, India||Week 141 December 13th 2013|