Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Photo of the Week - Manual Ferris Wheel (Kathmandu, Nepal)

Tripping through the streets of historic Kathmandu, I ventured into a ferris wheel by the river and a break from the temples and incessant hassling to purchase souvenirs. Nothing first struck me as unusual about the ferris wheel - shrieks of joy from younger children on the ride, contented parents enjoying the afternoon views along the river and jostling in the queue as new passengers were loaded.

But then the surprise - the ferris wheel had no electric power. It was powered by two young guys swinging nimbly on crossbeams across the inner part of the ride. With all the poise and balance of an Olympic gymnast, one would leap to a high crossbeam and use his body weight to accelerate the wheel before settling his feet on another beam. The second guy would similarly grab a beam near the top of its flight and further accelerate the ferris wheel repeating the ritual until the ride reached a fair speed for several revolutions before slowing to offload the delighted passengers.


Sherry Ott said...

The unexpected - this is why I love travel! Great pic and story!

Heather Dugan (Footsteps) said...

That would be an unusual job! Trying to figure out what job title that would generate on an American resume: Ferris Wheel Activator, Fun Facilitator?

Mark H said...

@sherry: I'm with you. I love these slightly unusual things when travelling.

@heather: Wheel Whirler?

Anil said...

Would love to see a video of this. It's also a very eco-friendly solution but seems a bit hazardous for the two Wheel Whirlers :/

Donna Hull said...

How interesting. It sure points out the fun of travel. You never know what you'll find.

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