The Government Is Here to Help. And Here. And Here. And Over There.

Here is a list of organizations funded in full or in part by some level of government that I wrote down while riding between M. G. Marg, a central pedestrian street, and the Hotel Mayfair in Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim, India:

Forest Secretariat, Forest, Environment and Wildlife Management
Office of the Principal Accountant General, Sikkim
Sikkim Central Water Commission Office of the Superintending Engineer
Sikkim Government Press
The National Cadet Corps
The Regional Centre on National Resources and Sustainable Development
Office of the Ombudsman for the Area Engineers
Sikkim State Commission for Women
Sikkim Commission for Backward classes
Government of India Geological Survey
East Police District Deorali Outpost
The Office of the Director, Sikkim Fire and Rescue Service
The Sikkim Legislative Assembly
SARAH, the Sikkim Anti-Rabies & Animal Health Program
The Reserve Bank of India, Director’s Bungalow
The Directorate of Sikkim State Lotteries
Sikkim Information Center
Sikkim Welfare Board
Geological Survey of India
The Sikkim Relief Rehabilitation Committee for Tibetan Refugees
The Department of Tourism and Civil Aviation (!, a tall, imposing building)
East District Police, Deorali and Tadong Outposts
Forest Secretariat
State Trading Corporation of Sikkim
Urban Development and Housing Department
Family Counseling Center
Housing Welfare Society

There are a lot of characters in Sikkim, as you can see:

Click the photos to enlarge them. And continue your Sikkim tour in the India Gallery at


Got time to buy me a cup of coffee?

Markets – Other than Christmas

At this time of shopping frenzy across America, it does the heart good to remember that people aren’t shopping for useless things everywhere in the world. From my other website,, here is a selection of photos showing how they do it elsewhere in the world. Click ’em to enlarge.

Cho Cu ‘Old’ Market, Saigon, Vietnam.


Tailor shop, Likoma Island, Malawi.


Fishmonger, Howth, Ireland.


The Grand Bazaar, Cairo, Egypt.


Vendor at the morning produce market, Hoi An, Vietnam.


This lady sells and repairs utensils at a market south of Quito, Ecuador.


The Mercado open air market, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia – HDR.


Croquetas, Old Havana, Cuba.


Detail of lamp shop, Grand Bazaar, Istanbul.


Cold drink shop, Rangoon, Burma.


Lal Market Road, Gangtok, Sikkim, India.


This lady is selling yak cheese on Barkhor Street around Jokhang Temple, Lhasa, Tibet.


Floating Market, Thailand.


Gun shop underground in Galata, Istanbul.


Parilla, Montevideo, Uruguay.


Herb trader, village in Atlas mountains, Morocco.


Painter from Vladikavkaz, North Ossetia, Russia, and his work, in Kazbegi town, Republic of Georgia.


Strawberry girl, Saturday market, Savonlinna, Finland.


God’s Glory Salon and shopping area, Kampala, Uganda.


The Supermarket on Lenin Street, on the central square, inside the 30-kilometer Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, Pripyat, Ukraine.


If you’d fancy any of these for yourself, you can buy them, and any of around 20,000 other photos, in a range of sizes and shapes, mounted or not, printed on gift boxes and shirts and more, at Click any photo to see it larger at See the entire EarthPhotos Markets Gallery here. Continue reading for twenty more photos.
Continue reading

Best Photos

This guy lives in the Munich zoo. He’s from my other web site,, where there are some 20,000 photos from over 100 countries. Check it out.

Here are the four most viewed photos there, as of today:

Tree climbing lion, Ishasha, Uganda

Vegetable market alongside the huge fish market in Hoi An, Vietnam

Balloon ride over Cappadocia, Turkey

And here, masters of the(ir) universe, in an office block along Oxford Street, London at quitting time

Explore all 20,000 photos.

Mladic Convicted

Today’s conviction of Ratko Mladic on charges of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity by a UN tribunal will come as cold comfort to those terrorized by his renegade Bosnian Serb forces. Mladic served the President of Republika Srpska, Radovan Karadžić (who was captured in 2008), as chief of staff of Bosnian Serb forces,

Mladic went underground at the end of the Yugoslav wars and was reported in poor health when finally tracked down and captured in 2011. On entering court today Mladic appeared in altogether better health, smirking at the camera – “a gesture that infuriated relatives of the victims.”

Mladic and his forces are most remembered for the 1995 Srebrenica massacre of about 8,000 men and boys, but the “Butcher of Bosnia” also terrorized the capital Sarajevo, where the 1992 – 1996 siege killed about 14,000 more people, including 5,434 civilians.

Here are photos from Sarajevo in November, 1997.

The Bosnian parliament building, top, and detail below.

Bullet-ridden tram stop.

Danger! Sniper!

The SFOR, or Stabilization Force, patrols the main street.

The flower market, where a mortar shell killed 66 in 1994.

I think this photo sums up the term “abject misery.”
A Sarajevo tram crosses in front of the rubble of a shelled-out building.



I don’t suppose one needs to live a life of perpetual astonishment. After all it’s adaptive to forget. Our daily grind is perhaps easier to endure in a state of mild amnesia. Muscle memory sets in, routine takes over, and one day seems the same as any other. But days go by, the years hum along, and one can careen towards senility without being unduly startled by anything at all. Surely, there are times when we must be released from our moorings and free ourselves up to notice the peculiarities of everyday life.

Liam Heneghan on travel, at Photo, the Liffey River, Dublin.