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16 February 2015

Photowalk to Thaipusam 2015 Batu Caves [Part 2]: 272 steps to the top

Photowalk to Thaipusam 2015 Batu Caves [Part 2]: Kid's gorgeous big eyes
Photowalk to Thaipusam 2015 Batu Caves [Part 2]: Kid's gorgeous big eyes

If you haven't read my first post about Thaipusam @ Batu Caves 2015, go read it now as these photo stories are connected. To get to the top of Batu Caves, everyone need to queue up in the jam-packed crowd and trying not to fall down or being suffocated (especially kids who join the queue). I believe we've spent at least an hour in the crowd just to reach the starting of the stairs. Apparently there are three rows of queue but only two passage available to go up. Therefore some of them shouted and complain as there were a few devotees who can't stand it and pass out. That was the time people around get even angrier and shout out even louder. That was the time the queue started to move a little bit faster.

Since we were stuck among packed crowd, there was nothing much to shoot as your eye view will be about people's head and it was hard to switch lenses. This time I use mainly the 8mm Samyang fisheye lens and Nikkor 85mm f1.8 prime lens. It is either you get wide scenery shoot or focus on something and blur out the background to make your object stand out.

I used to bring many lenses with me but knowing that I will need to climb the stairs, I left my heavy 70-200mm at home.  It was a good choice hahaha. Now please continue to scroll down and see what are the photos that I manage to take.

Lots of  yellow shaved head among the crowd
Lots of  yellow shaved head among the crowd

The devotees with milk container going up hill together.
The devotees with milk container going up hill together.

Fisheye view of Batu Caves with the Golden Statue and people mountain people sea World’s tallest statue of the Hindu deity Lord Murugan
Fisheye view of Batu Caves with the Golden Statue and people mountain people sea
World’s tallest statue of the Hindu deity Lord Murugan
The first thing that will greet you when you reach Batu Caves is the world’s tallest statue of the Hindu deity Lord Murugan.

It stand 140 feet high and it took over 250 tons of steel bars, 1550 cubic meters of concrete and 300 liters of special gold paint, imported from Thailand, to construct. The next thing that will hold you in awe about Batu Caves is the 272 steps that you have to climb. It was suppose to be tough on me but I guess climbing up slowly with the crowd made it easier.

You are advised to wear covered shoes instead of slippers or else you would have lost it here
You are advised to wear covered shoes instead of slippers or else you would have lost it here

Nothing to do when the queue was not moving, #TCSelfie time!!
Nothing to do when the queue was not moving, #TCSelfie time!!

Bokehlicious lights as the background
Bokehlicious lights as the background 

Getting nearer to the starting of the stairs. Colorful statue on the main dome
Getting nearer to the starting of the stairs. Colorful statue on the main dome

Kids carried by parent on their shoulder
Kids carried by parent on their shoulder

Looking in front hoping that the queue will move faster
Looking in front hoping that the queue will move faster

God's statue on a Kavadi
God's statue on a Kavadi

Half way on the steps to the top of  Batu Caves
Half way on the steps to the top of  Batu Caves

Kavadi-bearer taking a rest before continue his journey
Kavadi-bearer taking a rest before continue his journey

The interior of Batu Caves during Thaipusam 2015
The interior of Batu Caves during Thaipusam 2015

After we've reached the top of Batu Caves, we took a break so that can rest a while before we go down together with the crowd again. So we took the time to shoot some photos and I manage to get the portrait below:

One of the devotee with red powder all over his face, not sure if it had mixed with the blood  at his chin
One of the devotee with red powder all over his face, not sure if it had mixed with the blood  at his chin
"When the kavadi bearers have reached the Temple cave, they will offer their prayers to the consecrated statue of Sri Subramaniar Swamy which now resides inside the chamber of Temple Cave, after the chariot journey from Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur. The priests will then sprinkle consecrated ash over the hooks and skewers that pierce the kavadi bearers’ torso, before they are removed."

Tired look
Tired look

Replenish self with some drinking water
Replenish self with some drinking water

Saw flower ring hanged on the wall of Batu Caves
Saw flower ring hanged on the wall of Batu Caves

A lady looking at the right place to slot in money notes/small change at the wall
A lady looking at the right place to slot in money notes/small change at the wall

A devotee slotting in RM1 notes to the wall at Bau Caves
A devotee slotting in RM1 notes to the wall at Bau Caves
 I am not sure what's the purpose of slotting in small change/money to the wall but I guess it is like a wishing wall instead of wishing well?? Correct me if I am wrong =)

Gotta be careful when go down hill because the stairs quite small
Gotta be careful when go down hill because the stairs quite small

A woman has her cheek pierced and there was no blood
A woman has her cheek pierced and there was no blood 

Check out his back
Check out his back

Tired?? Take a nap on the floor
Tired?? Take a nap on the floor

Clothing shop owner sleeping on their own stocks
Clothing shop owner sleeping on their own stocks

Pierced back pulling a god statue behind. Ouch!
Giant hooks latched onto his back pulling a god statue behind. Ouch!

Crossing the railway to washing area - Thaipusam 2015
Crossing the railway to washing area - Thaipusam 2015
Okie, that's all for the photos taken when we were going up hill to Batu Caves and come down again. I didn't manage to explore much during at top as it was even more packed than when we were queuing. To get the sunrise shot, we skipped the top part and made a quick U-Turn to go down hill and go to the place where the devotees shave their head, take bath, ask for blessing and prepare a jar of milk to go uphill.

The next post will have more portraits of people and I can't wait to share with you guys. Stay tuned~! Let me know which one is your favourite picture okay?? I would like to know what do you think too. Thanks for dropping by!!

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