Every Sunday evening the Mysore Palace compound is lit up at 7:00 pm with 90,000 lightbulbs. I am showing two photos, one before lighting up and one after. The compound was crowded with tourists and with Indian families who gave a collective cheer when the lights went on.
The compound is surrounded by other buildings and walls that are also lit. It was great fun!
If the north of India part of the tour was forts and tombs, the south seems to be temples and palaces. The architecture is entirely different.
Where the north was invaded by Persians and Aryans, the south was in contact with the far east and eventually invaded by the Portuguese.
Today we visited the Somnathpur (Hindu) Temple which was carved out of soapstone around the middle of the 13th century and which looks eerily like Angkor Wat. This temple is no longer used as a temple because of damage to the carvings. As soon as there is damage to a sculpture of a god, the temple is deemed to be unpure and can no longer be used.
This afternoon my tour-mate Carol from Boston - who interestingly knows my father's cousin's daughter Meg who also lives in Boston - and I went shopping for silk fabric for Carol to make into a jacket. She bought two lengths of cloth and I purchased a white cotton embroidered tunic and a pink woven silk shawl.
Of course I was forced to make this purchase because my marble inlay picture frame shattered in my luggage on the flight from Jaipur. I wore my purchases this evening and received rave reviews from my very kind tour-mates.
Dinner this evening was hosted by a local Kodava family who trace their roots back to Alexander the Great. They have retained their traditional way of dress and religious ceremony and cuisine.
For the first time this evening we were served pork. The food was delicious and the company fantastic. I know this tour will end in just over a week. I will be sad to say goodbye to my new friends and to India.
I think Road Scholar planned this entire tour so we could be in Mysore last evening.