Leben und sterben in Varanasi

I escaped into the narrow alleys of the city. Even here life never stops. Chai (milk tea with spices) is being sold, motorbike driver passing crazy while using constantly their horn, all the time the mixture of betel nut is spitted on the wall by a random Indian and a cow shits just in front of me on the street. I wait and have to push her aside to pass. A dog is surrounded by her hungry puppies. A street vendor pushes is carriage through the alley and drove over the paw of a puppy which jumps yowling away. The other puppies are thinking it’s a game and biting the brother in the injured leg. A beggar pulls my shirt and asks for money for her baby on the arm. It is too much for me. I have to get out of here. On the roof top of a bakery I have some western breakfast with coffee, jam toast, cornflakes and omelet. That is calming down my mind which is still on a rollercoaster drive.

Typisches Bild in den Gassen: Eine heilige Kuh sucht sich ihren Weg
A typical scene: A cow is walking through the alley
Ein Sadhu beim Zeitunglesen
A Sadhu reading the newspaper
Ein Sadhu beim Zaubertrick vorlesen
A Sadhu making a show
Ein typisches Bild an den Ghats
A typical scene along the Ghats

I discover the city the following days with a mixture of fascination, disgust, amazement, abhorrence and admiration. But there are still several things which I couldn’t get used to it. Example: Every Indian can pee anywhere and anytime when he/she wants. The smell of urine in the alleys and especially along the Ghats is unendurable. Or once I found myself sitting on a bench and unless like in the city park where you watch ducks on a lake I watched a men being burned while his head looks out of the fire. At the river bank were so called “untouchables” (Hindu people of the lowest cast) who are looking in the river mud between bones for valuables. Right next to the burning place are two men washing clothes in the water which are put on the Ghats for drying where some badass monkey steals them or a stupid goat shits on them. Living and dying in Varanasi.

Die Wäsche wird direkt im Ganges gewaschen
The clothes are being washed in the water of the Ganges
Manchmal fallen ganze Affenbanden über die Stadt her
A monkey gang
Ein Blick entlang des Ufers
A view towards Varanasi

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Mathias Verfasst von:

2 Kommentare

  1. Maria Prechtl
    20. Februar 2017

    Hallo, hallo, lieber Mathias, danke für so echt nachzuspülende Situationsschilderungen, prima!

  2. Maria Prechtl
    15. Februar 2017

    In Gedanken war ich grad bei Dir, so richtig im überwältigenden Varanasi samt Gedränge, Getöns, Gestank…
    Danke für Bilder und Berichte

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