These small images link to photographs found in my currently-active Flickr album.

Monday, January 21, 2019

Thaipusam 2019 at Batu Caves

Heading Into the Crowds
Through the Gates
Ouch!
A Chance to Look Back
Closer View
Nearing Our Destination

Day 71 - The Hindu celebration of Thaipusam occurs during every January or February. This year it occurred today. Just outside Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, it draws around a million and a half people, although this year they were planning for an extra 100,000. The location is Batu Caves. One of the reasons we arrived here last week was to be here for it.

As you can see from the photographs above, there are 272 colourful steps leading to the caves. Some devotees may carry heavy pots of milk on their heads, or they may bear the pain of a heavy costume with hooks through their skin. These may be acts of contrition. The general public can climb the outside stairs for the cave temples. Tourists, like us, climb to take photos and feel as though they are participating in a very unique and exciting event. Several enormous caverns in this mountain can hold thousands and thousands of people.

We travelled to KL Sentral Station and waited for the KL Commuter train which runs right to the Batu Caves. There were so many people crammed into our train I could hardly move. Having the doors open after about 18 kilometers was a relief. Of course, the sun and the noonday heat were strong. It took us longer to get to the main stairs through the crowds than it did to climb to the caves. The interior was cooler and the religious contents gave it a more profound atmosphere. After we descended, we walked around the stalls selling all manner of food and trinkets. Free juices were welcomed by thirsty crowds. We stayed for approximately two hours. I will put this into my category of days I won't soon forget!

Entering
Better When Busy
Statues
Colourful
Yes!
Colourvibe


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