Travel experiences of the author during his trip to the holy city of India, Varanasi is the main theme. The three weeks stay in the holy city, considered as one of the most popular tourist destinations, gave me varying doses of culture shock from a variety of experiences, is what Jaikiran says in one of the chapters. Visits to three prominent rth Indian cities located along the banks of the Ganges, viz., Varanasi, Mirzapur and Allahabad and the related experiences make most of the text. For first time travelers to any of these places, the book is a useful guide as it gives useful tips and practical suggestions. For example, in the chapter relating to the Ghats of the Ganges, the author says, Ghats are hunting grounds for touts who are on a look out for the unsuspecting tourists wanting to take a boat ride or to perform some religious rites in the river. They also make brisk business selling containers for collecting Ganges Water, considered the most auspicious last drink for a dying Hindu. An unsuspecting tourist will always be taken for a ride by the touts who offer packages for a 30 minutes boat ride covering all major Ghats and also a small puja in the Ganges'. Jaikiran, in his book, has also tried to portray nature and people. Evening sun peeped through rich foliage bathing the monuments in a golden light. Eager to reach our next destination, we quickened our pace. The Pipal tree that stands testimony to one of the greatest episodes in written history was surrounded by a sea of worshippers is a sample text that describes nature. Seeds of the book were earlier sowed in the Facebook through Varanasi posts which got good reviews and comments. Twenty one days, twelve Face book postings; more than five hundred likes and around two hundred comments. Each post compelled me to write more; given the nature of responses from friends. I used to publish the stories in Face book by night and by next morning, many people would've already read them and posted comments. Many times I have wondered as to whether people waited for my posts as I was getting instant responses is how he describes the Face book connection.
K.P. Jaikiran, Professor of Geology in the University College, Thiruvananthapuram completed his education from the University of Kerala. A native of Kerala, he holds Ph.D degree in Geology and Diploma in Educational Planning. As Geologist with the Central Ground Water Board, Govt. of India for three years, he travelled through the length and breadth of the state of Orissa and left the place just before the Supercyclone of 1999 hit. A person who loves travel and friendship, he has tried to fathom the depth of both. Sajini B. Nair, wife, a demographer, works with the Population Research Centre in the same city. Gokul and Dev, children are studying. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org