I went to Batu Caves to took photos for Thaipusam yesterday with Rachel. This was my first time attend this event, also the first time snapped with Rachel. Thanks to Hindraf, KL and Putrajaya were announced public holiday, so we had the chance to join this event.
We reach there at around 6:00am. Without tripod, we were not able to took good photos at that moment. So we spent our time wander around and had our not-so-tasty breakfast at there. After we completed our breakfast it’s already 7:00am. The sky is getting bright so we started to take more photos. Rachel took photos with her Canon EOS 400D with Sigma 18-200mm HCM OS lens, while I was using my Canon EOS 350D equipped by Canon EF50mm F1.8 lens.
It was an amazing experience for us, especially for an event that we didn’t familiar with. There were many groups of devotees from different temples, carrying the kavadis or burdens, or all kinds of piercings on body joint the pilgrimage.
With some kind of supernatural force, they could bear the pain and climb up to the cave the situated above 272 steps of stair.
From Batu Caves, we took photos along the street until we reached Batu River, where the devotees clean themselves and get ready to join the pilgrimage. At here we could see how the devotees entered the trance state, how they got their piercings without pain and bleeding.
After finished snapping at Batu River, we decided to climb up to the cave. This was the first time Rachel went to Batu Caves, I’ve warned her about my experience where there was a monkey pissed on me in the cave =.= After climbing up 272 steps of stair, we finally reached the cave, it was a tiring climbing, wonder how the devotees could climb up with kavadi that having weight of 10-20kg. There were a lot of devotees and prayers in the cave which consists of the temple serving Lord Murugan. There were also few monkeys in the cave, eating the bananas given by the visitors.
At this time battery on Rachel’s Canon EOS 400D was out. So I could use her Sigma 18-200mm lens 😛 With OS (Optical Stabilizer) feature of this lens, it was good to take photos in dark environment and long distance shoot. But I was forgotten to turn it on until we stepped out from the cave =.=
When we reach the bottom of the hill, Rachel bought some peacock feathers for her colleagues before we ended the photography sessions.