the taj mahal.
there is so much that has been said of the taj. shah jahan's dedicated expression of true love to his lost wife, mumtaz mahal. devastatingly romantic. a king that was so distraught at losing his favourite wife that he obsessed over making the taj so perfectly symmetrical, so dazzlingly expensive, that he wasted billions of rupees, lost the trust of his entire kingdom, even his own son had him locked away so he would stop. being. so. crazy.
and all because, on her deathbed, his wife had requested he build her a beautiful tomb that would last forever to prove his love to her.
kinda a bit selfish if you ask me…
but, he did as he promised her. and thus we have the taj mahal, rising glittering above agra and the yamuna river.
driving through the city, it was hard to imagine it as it was, when the mughal empire was the richest, strongest, and most beautiful. the city of agra, itself, is often called the "armpit of india…" and it smells as though it were. the yamuna river, while we were there, was so low that garbage from decades of overpopulation spread throughout and was covered in dark slime.
but at sunrise, we crossed the gates into the courtyard of the taj, and you could almost see the glittering koi swimming in sapphire coloured ponds, brightly coloured tapestries hanging from the white walls, indian princes and princesses tiptoeing in sparkling attire through the golden halls. it was magnificent.
the day before we arrived, i broke our film camera. i was devasted. but here are the images we captured anyways. we asked another tourist to take a picture of us to prove we were there, and although we are a bit blurry, here is the proof.
after a whole month of exploring and experiencing india, this was a perfect finale.