#TheBlindList to see the India outside India and #SayYesToTheWorld

For me "To travel is to explore with all senses"

The senses of sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch define whether my travel-wandering soul attained solace or is it ready again for more exploration.

As you all know from my Blogging profile that I reside in Howrah district which falls in the state of West Bengal, India.

The name Howrah might make you remember that famous Cantilever bridge known as Howrah Bridge which connects two cities, Kolkata and Howrah, situated on the east and west side of the tributary of river Ganga known as river Hooghly or Adi Ganga. At the one end of the Howrah bridge is the famous Howrah railway station in Howrah City which acts as the gateway to the 'City of Joy' Kolkata, earlier known as Calcutta, which is on the other side of this cantilever bridge. Calcutta, by this name, was the capital of India before New Delhi until 1911 during the British Empire of East Indian Company.

For your information, I as a Howrah resident feel the pride to share that Howrah Station now holds two multipurpose railway stations at one place. One for the Indian Railways and other for Kolkata Metro Railways underneath the former one as the east-west line of Kolkata Metro crosses beneath the river bed of Ganges or Hooghly river. The place Howrah was established in 1947 with an area of 1467 square km and is still the closest industrial belt to then Calcutta, now Kolkata.

Being a down to earth Indian it always pinches me to travel to those destinations that somewhere has a match with India.

That match I look for might be of culture, people, society or mere namesake, it might be of the same pronunciation of any Indian place or city, but abroad.

Three such matching places for this openminded but blind bucket list is

Howrah, Australia:

Unlike the Howrah city in India, there is a place also known as Howrah in Australia too. The Howrah there is a beachside suburb of the most populous city, Hobart city of Australia. The Hobart city is the second oldest capital city after Sydney and is the capital of the state Tasmania, Australia. But what drives me to explore this place blindly is the name Howrah and the fact that it is situated on the banks of Derwent River like Howrah city in India is situated on the banks of river Ganges. Yes, this Australia's Howrah will also soothe my sense of sight with views across the river, not the Hooghly or Ganges river this time but the Derwent river at least.

Wouldn't it be mesmerizing to see 'Howrah House' in Australia if it exists till now, a property established by a retired Indian Army Officer during 1830s epitomizing the naming of Howrah in Australia?

Wouldn't it be nice to see through the thoughts of that retired Indian Army Officer who envisioned the Derwent River of Australia with that of the sacred River Ganga of India?

Wouldn't it be peaceful to hear the roar of the sea in Howrah, Australia as opposed to the industrial belt Howrah, India I have known so far?

Wouldn't it be thoughtful to imagine Howrah Bridge on Derwent river?

Wouldn't it be tasteful to experience the seafood of Australia's Howrah unlike the Bengali style home cooked "Maacher Jhol" aka Fish Curry we serve in Kolkata and Howrah?

Wouldn't it be great to have a sip of tea in kullhad or "bhaarer cha" as we call it in bengali during Australian Howrah darshan?

Kulhadwali Chai aka Bharer Cha during journey

Calcutta, United States of America:

Calcutta, the ex-capital city of India till 1911 before New Delhi, was renamed to Kolkata in 2001. But the essence of it's name still flourishes worldwide but not just in my graduation mark sheet by The University of Calcutta. One such case exists some 12,945 km apart.

Unlike Calcutta in India, there is a Calcutta in the Columbiana district of the Ohio state in the United States of America. The naming happened when the first brick house was built in that area by Mr. William Foulks during 1800s which was named Foulkstown. But was later changed to Calcutta after the capital city Calcutta, now Kolkata.

East-West Kolkata Metro Station in Saltlake, Kolkata

Just like me, America has an obsession with the capital of British India, Calcutta. Thus there are several places called Calcutta in America than anywhere else, not just what India had. Apart from the Calcutta in Ohio, we are talking about there are several other towns and places called Calcutta in America. They are Calcutta - the coal town in Indiana, Calcutta in Pleasants district, West Virginia, Calcutta - a village in the Corozal district, Belize and Calcutta - a resort in Saramacca district, Suriname in South America.

And this name calling drives me to travel blinded and say YES TO THE WORLDs called Calcutta in the USA.

Wouldn't it be an experience to see what so many Calcutta in the USA holds for a citizen of Calcutta, India?

Cricket Association of Bengal - Eden Gardens Cricket Stadium in Kolkata, then Calcutta.

Wouldn't it be nice to hear the stories behind the naming?

Wouldn' it be worth visiting to feel the aroma of the name pronounced as Calcutta?

Would it be soothing to not see the Ambassador Yellow cabs there?

Wouldn't it be great if I can see them celebrating Durga Pujo in full fervor?

I guess it would be more worthy than any other blind visit to explore the world around us.

Hyderabad, Pakistan:

As I quoted myself to be a down to earth Indian earlier in this post, I meant about the India without any division of lines called borders. I would love to be the Indian from The Undivided India. 

And my blind quest for touch and taste go to thy neighborhood Pakistan. Every Indian knows what Biryani is, it's a Muslim delicacy being highly sought after by Hindus like me. India is a country with diversity, so in different parts of the sub-continent one recipe might be called and cooked in different styles. Biryani becomes biriyani, biriani, briyani or birani and whatever you may pronounce. But at the end of the day, it is a mixture of rice, meat, aromatic Indian spices, yogurt, egg, dry fruits, vegetables and so on.

Though I get to eat and love to eat the biryani served in Kolkata with boiled potato in it. But, Hyderabadi biriyani is known to be the best delicacy among biryani in India.

Unlike India's Hyderabad, there is a Hyderabad in Pakistan too. The Hyderabad of Pakistan is located in the state of Sindh, some 140 km east to Karachi city. Being a Muslim dominated country, there is no wonder that Biryani is always ready to be served & cooked in Pakistani's own Hyderabadi style.

Wouldn't it be nice to smell and taste the biryani that had been cooked in Hyderabad of Pakistan?

Wouldn't it be an exquisite blind exploration to taste the biryani of Pakistan's Hyderabad and to recall the experience in comparison to India's Hyderabadi Biryani or the one I had yesterday in Kolkata, also being sold as the famous Hyderbadi Biryani in Kolkata for the fist time.

Wouldn't it be like self exploration by Exploring The Worlds with so differences yet so many similarities?

So come on, let us be openminded and travel to explore for that enriching experience called World.