**“A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.”**
**Let's Talk about Friendship**
**Friends Story**Friends Diaries**
**So Much to See on Ghats**Life on Ghats**
**Varanasi Live**Banaras Diaries**
Friendship is a relationship of mutual affection between people. Friendship is a stronger form of interpersonal bond than an association. Friendship has been studied in academic fields such as sociology, social psychology, anthropology, and philosophy. Various academic theories of friendship have been proposed, including social exchange theory, equity theory, relational dialectics, and attachment styles.
Ghats are the areas in holy riverside cities like Varanasi and Haridwar where stairs exist to reach the Ganges. It is also used for mountainous regions like the Western and Eastern Ghats.
The word Ghat is explained by numerous Dravidian etymons such as Telugu katta and gattu (dam, embankment) Tamil kattu (side of a mountain, dam, ridge, causeway) and Kannada gatta (mountain range). This etymology was proposed by Burrow and endorsed by Mayrhofer and Asko Parpola.
Slavic languages have a word gat that means corduroy road, but it is not clear if it is related to ghat.
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So yes, we too went to the Taj Mahal. To be honest, we were debating a bit whether to go or not, until David spoke to a guy who told him we should go, because if we would go to the Taj, for the rest of our lives, whenever we would go to an Indian restaurant, we could point to the wall and say: “I’ve been there”. And so we went.
And yes, it is an amazingly beautiful and pleasantly symmetrical building. And yes, very crowded. We decided to go there at sunrise, partly for the sunrise itself and partly because it is less crowded if you got that early. We left Delhi at 2.30 AM and arrived at 5.30 AM. You’d be amazed how many other crazy people were there at that hour!
But what we did not like so much is that the Taj's bloody history is hardly ever mentioned. It might be a beautiful building, but the tale of its construction is less pretty. Not only is this not mentioned at the Taj Mahal itself, the Lonely Planent, for example, fails to mention it as well. Did you know that when the building was finished, the Shah ordered to have all the craftsmen’s hands cut off? That way he hoped to ensure that no similar building would ever be made. He wanted his building to be the most beautiful one ever made. A very sad thing, if you ask us, and it casts a dark shadow over all that beauty.
So why go there? We are not sure. Maybe because we like to see and form an opinion ourselves. Or because we are just curious. And the first restaurant we went to, after going to the Taj Mahal? You’ve guessed it, a huge picture of the Taj hanging on the wall.
The sheer presence and majesty of a tiger is unprecedented. To photograph a legend such as Prince is definitely a great way to usher in the new year. "Now at 10, he is one of Bandipur’s most dominant males and roams around freely in his area of 80 sq km; an average male tiger’s territory is 30 sq km." Do read about this tiger in the following link.