Imagine yourself at dawn, lost in a maze of alleys, almost a chiaroscuro from a medieval city. You wander around in narrow, winding streets, wondering what may lay behind these dozens of nameless and half-open doors that lead to the heart of houses dating back hundreds of years.
Mysterious silhouettes move here and there, draped in silk or wrapped in a white sheet. They walk in silence, all in the same direction. You follow them. Sounds of bells ring out in the distance, the sacred Ganges is somewhere below. It is 5 a.m. and Hindus start preparing to bathe or to do their ritual ablutions. You walk in the streets of this city that is waking up. You get bewitched by the sacred songs that resonate in the distance and fail to locate their source. A powerful feeling permeates your mind as you realize that you got in the holiest of all Hindu cities: Varanasi.