January 26th India celebrated its 60th year as a republic. It is a major holiday and we were lucky to spend the day together, no work for Xavier! For about the past month or so, all around India gate and the President's house, along Rajpath, chairs have been slowly being set up for the big Republic day parade. We did not attend the parade, we're not one for huge and crowded gatherings, especially with our boys. But we did get to watch the parade on t.v. And what a parade! Unfortunately, like most winter mornings, the day got off to a foggy, smoggy polluted start, but by mid-morning the sun started clearing the air a bit. We saw the military in all its fancy dress (even some riding on beautifully decorated camels), marching bands and really amazing floats. These floats were not just your simple put a model of something on wheels, they were really invloved. Each state had a float that represented its culture. Here's the float representing the handicraft work of Kashmir:
This one, I think, is for the music of Bollywood films because it has posters from some films and it was playing music. Most of the parade commentary was in Hindi, so I didn't catch what everything symbolized.
This float was dedicated to bamboo and its use as pipes to carry water to farms and homes in the countryside. Behind the tall men, they had contructed some bamboo pipes with running water, pretty impressive for a float.
This might be my personal favorite, a float for awareness to global warming. The round Earth was actually steaming as it rode by...
These were just a few of many great floats we saw. Dorian kept asking me who's driving them and how they go...just a fancy car, right? I wish I had better images to post instead of taking photos of our t.v. -- maybe next year we'll brave the crowds!