Historically, the idea of independent travel was not an option for Indian women. They typically stayed at home, cared for by a husband or a father figure. But with more female opportunities in education and employment, the role of India’s women is changing. Say hello to Indian travel clubs.
Traditional travel groups for Indian women included widows, abandoned wives and the elderly. But even those women traveled with a male chaperone, mostly to religious sites. Today’s Indian travel for women includes trips around the world, from the the Taj Mahal to the Antarctic.
“In a typical Indian family holiday women end up in a role-playing mode of being a mother, wife, daughter and are often unable to experience a destination as an individual,” says Piya Bose, owner of Mumbai-based women’s travel group, GOTG (Girls on the Go) in an Aljazeera article.As the number of urban, educated Indian women grows, so have the number of travel clubs enabling them to see the world on their own.
With offices in both New Delhi in North India and Bangalore in South India, Women On Wanderlust (WOW) is another travel club, this one founded by travel writer Sumitra Senapathy who promotes the advantages of group travel. “They can come in solo but travel with the security that a group provides”, says Senapathy.
Jazzberry Blue is an artist who creates consistently pleasing abstract art. Jazzberry Blue’s recently released abstract art pieces based on cities around the world have impressed the art community. Something I find especially cool about the cities chosen so far for this project is that they are all great destinations for viewing abstract art. Coincidence? Maybe. Either way, these beautiful renderings of cities as abstract art warrant a list of the best place to view abstract art in each respective city. Meta? Definitely.
In what would otherwise make for a great comedy sketch, an Air India captain took a bathroom break during a flight Tuesday night and returned to find a jammed cockpit door. But according to a report by USA Today, this was no laughing matter: after all efforts failed to open the door – even from the inside – the co-pilot landed the plane at the nearest airport, where ground maintenance staff fixed the problem. The plane then resumed its flight, which was making its way from New Delhi to Bangalore.
Several countries have updated their travel advisories to warn tourists of the threat of sexual assault when traveling to India. The South Asian country has made headlines in recent weeks and months following a spate of rape cases involving travelers and locals alike.
In the most recent incident, a 25-year-old British woman threw herself off her hotel balcony to escape a sexual assault. The woman was sleeping in a hotel in the tourist city of Agra, when the owner of the hotel burst into her room in the middle of the night demanding a massage before trying to assault her. The terrified woman jumped from her first floor balcony, and is now in the hospital suffering two broken legs and head injuries.This latest attack comes on the back of the vicious gang rape of a Swiss woman last Friday. The 39-year-old was camping in the temple town of Orchha with her husband when a gang of men arrived, armed with sticks. The men beat up the husband before tying the woman to a tree and attacking her. According to police, the woman said she was raped by up to seven or eight men.
But it’s not just travelers who face the threat of being molested in the subcontinent. Three months ago, a 23-year-old Indian medical student was killed after five men raped her on a bus before throwing her from the moving vehicle in the Indian capital, New Dehli. The deadly attack sent shockwaves across the country, spurring protests and a call for tougher laws against sexual assault.
However, any changes are too little too late for the country’s tourism industry, which is bracing itself for the fallout. Both the UK and Switzerland have issued travel advisories warning about the rise in sexually motivated crimes across the country.
What do you think? Would you still visit India despite the latest attacks?
My old friend Lauri, who happens to be a pilot for Finnair, just snapped a photo of what might just be the worst possible job in any airport in the world: runway monitor. Indira Gandhi International Airport is the largest airport in India and a critical hub for scores of airlines passing through the Asian continent. With so much traffic passing through its three runways, debris is bound to collect, so the pathways have to be carefully monitored; as Air France 4590 illustrated, even a small strip of metal can be catastrophic for a passing aircraft.
In New Delhi, the best way to monitor runways seems to be to station someone out on the field. The poor guy in the photo above has only a tiny shanty to protect him from the 104°F (40°C) heat, constant noise and ubiquitous jet fumes. And who knows where the bathroom is.
The only bright side? He’s probably got some great airplane photos for his airliners.net photo page.