Monday, March 24, 2008

Hide & Seek with Rain in Mangalore...

It had been long time, we went for any outing so one day all of a sudden a place stroked in our mind and we were closed it as next destination. Place was Mangalore and time was of HOLI, Easter and EID, altogether.
Friday 21-Mar-08, evening we started from Mysore after finishing up with our Dinner @ HOLI’s eve। Bus was at 11:00 PM, we were afraid to miss the bus as we got late in dinner and started about 10:40PM from home. Luckily, we managed to get the bus and started for Mangalore. A big surprise was waiting for us on the way. When we hit the Mysore- Mangalore high way, we came to know about the condition of road. Mangalore is about 300 KMs from Mysore and we hardly found even a patch of 5 KMs, which was even in a little good condition. Entire high way is broken and taking last breathes. Soon we got one more surprise in terms of rain without a season. Finally after having a good exercise of body and intestines we reached Mangalore about 7:30 AM. We took two rooms in a Hotel named Hotel Anugrah, a decent and economic one, just close to KSRTC bas stand. Till this time rain got some more speed. We had already booked a cab there so the driver was at hotel at given time.
Day One 22-Mar-08: By 11:30AM we had breakfast and started for St. Mary’s Island. It is about 70 KMs form main city and close to Udupi district. Before going to island we went to Famous Krishna temple there in Udupi. The architecture of this temple is different from the other temples in Karnataka, we have seen so far. In this temple there is a Statue of Krishna of black stone of about 3feets of height and it has a KAVACH that is made of diamond. This was really amazing.

(Krishna Temple: Udupi)
Then we moved to island as it has timings up to 5:00 PM. Around 2:00PM we were at the boat. This island is close to Malpe Beach. Boat takes almost 20-25 minutes to reach to the island. Normally people are given time of one hour to spend there, but one can spend more time as well. This island is really a good place to spend time. It is full of greenery and rocks. Some small rides are also there for kids. Looks of sea are really beautiful. One thing that needs to be done is a little mentinence so that it will attract more people. Way back to Mangalore we had our Lunch in a restaurant named “Sun Shine” on the high way itself. It is a vegetarian one and here we had one of the best food experiences in south India in last 1.5 yrs or so. Then we went to Kapu beach. One light house is there and that is in use also. Water current is very high on this beach. People are not advised to swim there but it good to spend time there. Final destination of the day one was a temple on the same high way near Kapu beach. This was built by a Muslim Fisher man. It is told that Goddess gave him, her appurtenance. Name of the temple is DURGA PERMESHWARI. We visited a mall close by and went to sleep after having dinner.

(Yes, That is St. Mary's Island)
Day Second 23-Mar-08: Even now rain was playing the game of hide and seek with us. Finally we started at 9:30AM and first we went to a Shiva Temple in city itself and then for breakfast. This time it was a famous restaurant “TAJ RESTAURANT”. Though it was a famous one we did not find it so worth. Then we went to “Tanneer Bhavi”. There is a plate form made of stones of about 50-60 feet’s in Side Sea. It is a thrill to walk on this, but we did not try this thrill. This is the beach best suitable for swimming and a number of people were enjoying this. Still it was drizzling but soon it took and speed and we had to take a shelter in a tea shop. Then we headed towards "Pannambur Beach". Again, it a dangerous beach for swimming. This is in lime light as few days back a ship got sunk in sea and waves threw it quite close to sea shore. We can see this ship clearly from the sea shore. Now it was lunch time and we had our lunch again a well known place Hotel Srinivas. Here food was ok and we had north Indian food here.

( Fun is always there :Pannambur Beach )
Now time was for some shopping and we went to the latest mall “Empire”. We spent some 1.5 hrs there but we could not find something special that we could buy. Then we went to Church since it was the day of Easter. We went to two churches there. One was Father Muller’s church, this one inside a Hospital. Since I have been to 7 /8 churches I found this one more silent one, may be because of Hospital and the first one where foot wears were not allowed. Easter mass was going on in the second church, when we reached there. We attended that for some 10 minutes. Though we were not able to understand anything but we did prayer in our style, since prayer is not bound in the boundaries of languages and styles.

(Father Muller's Church)
Our final destination was the home of our group’s tom boy Liza’s home। So, we headed there and met her family. Her father was not there as he works out town, but we met her mom and bro. Both are quite simple like tom boy herself. We had our dinner there and finally left for Mysore.

I am sure none of us would like remember Mysore-Mangalore high way at all। I would like to point out few things I / we noticed there.

1। Architecture of temples is different that I have seen so far in South India.

2. City is clean, advanced, cultured and progressing fast. It has good infrastructure for basic facilities.
Some Good Restaurants and Hotels:

Sun Shine à (R): Adi- Udupi Ph- 0820-2536585 and 3256312

Hotel Srinivas à (R/H): Mangalore Ph: 0824-2440062
Hotel Anugrah à (H): Mangalore KSRTC bus stand Ph: 0824- 2215775

Trip Members: Me, Nishu (Hamri Begum Saahiba ), Vaibhav and Abhijeet
--- Amit 24 /03 /08

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Nanjangud Temple...

This photo was selected as Photo Of Week for Infosys-Mysore intranet.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

कुछ सवाल चोखेर बाली से...

अपने शौक के कारण कभी कभी ब्लॉग पर आ कर कुछ कुछ पढ़ लेता हूँ और अच्छा लगे तो कुछ कमेंट भी ज़रुर करता हूँ। काफ़ी दिनों से ब्लॉग का ताप मन कुछ गरम है। किस सज्जन ने स्त्रियों के सम्मान में कुछ गुस्ताखी की ( जोकि निहायत ही ग़लत बात है ) और कुछ स्त्रियों ने जंग का बिगुल बजा दिया और नाम दिया चोखेर बाली ! कुछ पुरूष भी इस मिशन में शरीक है। वैसे तो मैं ख़ुद इन सब की राय / सोच से काफ़ी इत्तिफाक रखता हूँ , मगर कहीं कहीं सोच में भी पड़ जाता हूँ। समझ ही नही आता क्या चल रहा है , उन्हें क्या कहना है या क्या साबित करना है। अगर सारी नही तो अधिकांश बातें बिल्कुल साफ-साफ है ( जो मुझे लगता है, उनका पता नही ) तो फिर वाद-विवाद कैसा ?बहुत सारे मुद्दे है इस वाद- के। चलो एक एक कर के थोडी थोडी बात करे।

१। स्त्री सम्मान: पता नही, हो सकता है ये मेरा भ्रम है , मगर मुझे लगता है स्त्री सम्मान में कहीं कोई कमी नही आई है जैसे जैसे स्त्री ऊँचाइयों को छूती जा रही है उसका मान सम्मान भी बढ़ रहा है अगर कुछ लोगो को यह बात हजम न हो तो कह सकते है पुरूष उनका सम्मान करने को विवश है फिर पता नही उन्हें क्यों लगता है उनका सम्मान खो रहा है कहीं कहीं यह बात ज़रूर है , मगर वो सिर्फ़ उन स्त्रियों के लिए है जो अपना सम्मान खोने को उतारू है, उदाहरण के लिए, हमारे पीजी में एक सुकन्या रहती है अक्सर रात हो घर से बाहर रहती है, और कम से कम ऑफिस के काम से तो नही और अब जिन सज्जन के साथ जा रही है उनका नम्बर तीसरा है वो सज्जन और मैडम दोनों ही सम्मान के पात्र है

२। रेप के कारण: सभी के अपने अपने तर्क है, कुछ पुरुषों ने तो स्त्री के कपड़ो को दोष देदिया एक छोटा सा सवाल है उन लोगो से, क्या कभी साड़ी या सलवार सूट पहने हुई लड़की का बलात्कार नही हुआ??? और जब ऐसा हुआ है तो कम से कम कपड़ो का तो कोई दोष इसमें नही है! इसके बहुत से कारण है जिनमे से कुछ है पुरूष की कुंठा और उसका विकृत दिमाग, समाज में ग़लत ढंग से फैलता आधुनिकरण का जाल और कुछेक स्त्रियों का थोड़ा औचापन

३। संपत्ति अधिकार: क़ानून का तो पता नही मगर आज कल शायद सब यही मानते ही की पिता की संपत्ति पर दोनों का बराबर अधिकार है काफ़ी लोगो का मत है की ये पिता की मरजी है कि किसको कितना दे मैं भी इसी बात को मानता हूँ

४: स्त्री की पुरूष पर निर्भरता: ये काफ़ी विवादास्पद है मैं तो सोचता हूँ स्त्री पुरूष दोनों एक दुसरे के पूरक है और कहे कि एक सिक्के के दो पहलू वैसे दोनों वक्तिगत रूप से आत्म निर्भर है किसी का न होना किसी को असहाय नही कर सकता कुछ पुरूष सोचते है कि वो एक स्त्री के सेर्वेसेरवा है वास्तव मे वो एक मिथ में है तथा कुछ स्त्रिया भी ऐसा ही सोच कर उनके मिथ को मजबूत करती है भगवान् ने जब सब को दो हाथ , दो पैर , दो आँख और सब के उपर एक दिमाग दिया है तो कोई किसी से कम कैसे मेरे रिश्ते कि एक दीदी है, और मेरे जीजाजी में शयद ऐसी कोई कमी नही है जो आप सोच नही सकते सारी कमियाँ एक साथ देखनी हो तो आप उनके दर्शन कर सकते है दीदी अपनी मेहनत से ख़ुद अच्छी गुजर कर लेती है मगर मैं आज तक नही समझा सबकी तमाम कोशिश के बाद भी वो उनके साथ रहने चली जाती है?

५। पतिता होना: मनीषा पांडेय जी ने बहुत सही कहा। इसका कोई मानक नही है किसी के हिसाब से हमारे पीजी कि सुकन्या पतिता हो सकती है और किसी के हिसाब से नही काफ़ी हद तक ये परी-स्थिओं पर भी निर्भर करता है कॉल सेंटर में काम करने वाली लड़की देर रात को ही घर आएगी और जो कि ठीक भी है इसका मतलब नही कि वो ग़लत है डे शिफ्ट की लड़की यदा कदा देर से आए चलता है मगर ये रोज हो तो सोचने वाली बात ज़रूर है, मगर यह भी ये नही कहता की वो पतिता है दूसरी तरफ़ अगर शराब पीना, सिगरेट पीना, सिटी बजाना आदि पतित होने की निशानी है वो येही काम करने वाले पुरूष भी पतित है इन सब काम करने वाले पुरूष को अगर हम पतित नही मानते तो ख़ुद ही सोचे गलती किस की है

अभी बहुत कुछ है कहने को, मगर अभी बस इतना ही ...

--- अमित २०/०२/२००८

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Saturday, October 13, 2007

आओ खेले , खेल !!!

ये खेल मंडल वाले बडे अजीब है या फिर हम से चिढ़ते है। ये लोग कभी भी उन खेलो को शामिल नही करते जिन में हमे महारत हांसिल है। डर है , सारे स्वर्ण तो हम ले ही लेंगे , रजत और कांस्य का भी उनके लिए ख़तरा है । आप सब को पता ही है कौन कौन से खले है वो, मगर मैं यहाँ सिर्फ एक ही का जिक्र कर रहा हूँ और उसी पर थोड़ी चर्चा करते है।
हाँ तो देवियों और सज्जनो वोह खेल है " टांग खीचना "। अरे क्या हुआ, पसंदीदा खेल का नाम आते ही होंटों पर मुस्कान तैर गई। होता है, होता है। आप सभी जानते है , मगर बहुत से भाई मानते नही , इस खेल में हम एक तरफ और दुनिया एक तरफ , तव भी अपना तो कुछ बिगड़ना नही है। आओ चले , थोडा इस पर प्रकाश डाले।
बात कहॉ से शुरू करे ... अरे , हम तो ब्लोग पर है , तो चलो यही से श्री- गणेश करते है।
किसी भाई ने लिखा , हमे ना जाने क्या हुआ हम हिंदी भूल गये और इंग्लिश का दामन थाम लिया। उनका ये लिखना तो साब जुर्म हो गया। लोगो ने आव देखा ना ताव बस दनदना दन बरस पडे, जिसे किसी ने उनकी दुखती रग पर हाथ ना रख, पाव रख मसल दिया हो। किसी ने कहा अपनी भाषा विकास के लिए दुसरी भाषा की मदद लेना गलत नही। हमे पता हो है यह सही बात है , मगर हम माने क्यों ? अरे भई खेल भावना भी तो किसी चिड़िया का नाम है , और खेल का रोज अभ्यास भी तो ज़रूरी है।
किसी सज्जन ने आज ज़रा गुमनाम हो कर एक अच्छी बात कह दी और पता नही पढने वाले कहॉ कहॉ तक , क्या क्या सोच गये और आगे मैदान में "खीचने टांग"। कुछ सज्जनो को परेशानी थी की वो गुमनाम क्यों है , तो कुछ को लगा उनका लेख किसी की शान में गुस्ताखी कर रहा है। वैसे बडे मजे की बात है , जिस की शान में लिखा गया था , उन साब की कोई प्रतिक्रिया नही आई , मगर बाक़ी लोगो का कप्तान साब को खेल भावना के तहत समर्थन जारी था।
चलो भाई हम तो छोटे से दर्शक है , खेल का मज़ा लेते ही रहेंगे और हाँ आप से गुज़ारिश है क्रपया खेलते रहिए !!!
धन्यवाद !!!
--- अमित १३/१०/०७

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

ब्लोग्स और कमेंट्स ...

नमस्कार दोस्तो,
आज सोच की दिल की बात तो बहुत कर ली , थोडा दिमाग की तरफ भी ध्यान डाला जाये। पहले ही कम था और दिल की सुन सुन की बचा कूचा भी जंग खा चूका है । समझ नही आ रहा कहॉ से शुरू करूं ! एक पल को तो लगता है, मैं एक सम्वादंशील विषय उठाने जा रहा हूँ , मगर सोचा है को बात करुंगा जरुर। मैं जहाँ जो भी कहने जा रहा हूँ वो किसी व्यक्ति विशेष के लिए नही है , हम सभी के लिए है , जो जुडे है ब्लोग्गिंग से।
वैसे मैंने को कुछ किया नही है ब्लोग्गिंग में , मगर कभी कभी इधर-उधर कुछ कुछ पढ़ता रहता हूँ और अच्छा लगने पर कमेंट्स भी करता हूँ और कुछ अखरता है तव भी। मगर काफी समय से मैंने ध्यान दिया की , हम में से कुछ है जो की कमेंट्स करने कुछ उत्तेजित जो जाते है और थोडा वक्तिगत भी।
हर दुसरे चौथे ब्लोग पर कमेंट्स की कतार देखी देती है जो की एक वाद विवाद की कहानी सुनाती है। पता नही कोई किस के ऊपर कमेंट करता है। व्यक्ति पर, उसकी सोच पर या उसकी रचना पर। मेरा को यह समझने का प्रयास अभी जारी है !
मेरा खुद का मानना है की लेखक/ कवि कोई भी रचना अपनी भावनाओं और अपने खुद के विचारो के आधार पर लिखता है और जब कोई उसको पढ़ता है को पढने वाला अपने आचार-विचार के अनुरूप उसको देखता है। कहानी और कविता की गहराई और लिखने का असली मतलब केवल लेखक जानता है। जब भी कोई उसपर कमेंट करता है, वो पाठक के उस के निकाले गये अर्थ पर आधारित होता है और थोडा सा उसकी सोच को प्रदर्शित करता है। कुछ का मानना है की कमेंट्स रचना पर नही व्यक्ति विशेष पर हो रहे है। यह ज़रूर गम्भीर बात है। मगर यह कौन तय करे की कमेंट्स किस पर है ; व्यक्ति विशेष पर या उसकी रचना पर, उसके शब्द चयन पर , शैली पर? दुसरी बात जब ब्लॉगर ने अपनी रचना सब के आगे रख दी है उस पर कमेंट करने के लिए को उसको उन कमेंट्स को सवीकार भी करना चाहाइये।
अब करे को क्या! अपने ऊपर हमे कमेंट बुरा लगता है और दुसरे पर कमेंट करते समय है एक बार भी अपने शब्द चयन पर नज़र नही डालते। क्या बुरा है अगर हम कुछ कहने से पहले एक बार सोच ले और लगे की इस कमेंट से कुछ गलत फ़हमी हो सकती है को उसको ब्लोग पर ना डाल, मेल कर गलत फ़हमी दूर कर ले। और उसको ब्लोग पर पोस्ट करना ब्लॉगर के विवेक पर छोड दे। शायद कुछ गलत फेह्मियां कम हो जायेगी और किसी की भाव्नाए नही दुखेँगी। बाक़ी सबकी अपनी अपनी राय ...
यह पोस्ट किसी व्यक्ति विशेष पर नही है और इससे किसी की भावना को नुकसान होता है को मैं माफ़ी चाहता हूँ ।
साथ ही यह पोस्ट वाद-विवाद के लिए भी खुला है , सभी बाते आपके सामने है, क्रपया अपने विवेक से स्वं निर्णय ले ...
बहुत बहुत धन्यवाद !!!

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Goa: It Rocks...

(Calangute Beach)
24 Aug’07: One of the most awaited days for we guys (Me, Arun, Vaibhav, Abhijeet, Guru and Ashok Bhai) as we were going to Goa, yes Goa a dream destination for youths.All planning were already done so according to that we all reached at Mysore Railway Station on time as out train’s time was 8:40 PM.

(Fun @ Calangute Beach)
25 Aug’07: We got down at Hubli at 7:00 AM and our cab was waiting for us. We had our break-fast in Hubli and started our onwards journey towards Goa. We choused the Karwaar road NH-17 to reach Goa. This way is a little long but is full of natural beauty. By 1:30 we reached Goa and we visited the Colva beach in south Goa. Then we went to Colongute Beach and checked into hotel that was just 300 meter from the beautiful colongute beach. After taking out bath around 4:00PM we started roaming around and first we went to Calangute Beach. This beach is known as the Haven for Hippies and really the beach is good. We spent about 2/3 hours at this beach and than we headed for Panaji, capital of Goa. Here we went for a ride on curise. This was a wonderful ride of one hour. The curise people had DJ system on curise. They had a small dance troupe and they performed on 4 /5 dances including folk dance of Goa and one Portuguese dance. The performance was really good and we enjoyed and at the end we all danced on the curise floor. At 9:30 PM we left curise and on the way we were looking for our diner but it was a bit late and we had out food near our hotel at Calangute beach.

(Baaga Beach)

26 Aug’07: This was the day when we had to cover max of out trip so we started early. First we went to Anjana Beach. It is in a little depth and view from this beach was nice. We were there for 1 hour and then we move for Chopaara Fort. Though only one boundary wall is there at the name of Fort but the view of Arabian Sea is really awesome from this fort. We spent almost 2 hours in this fort doing photography.

(Anjana Beach)

We left for Panaji after the fort and did some shopping in the main market there and then we had our lunch there. After lunch our target was one of the famous churches of Goa. Name of the Church was “The Basilica of Bom Jesus”. Maximum work in this church was of wood and golden wood work was also there. By the time we finished with the church and were planning for our next place “Auguda Fort- Dil Chahata Hai Fort” the weather started playing with us and we could see some black clouds in the sky. Still by 5 PM we reached that fort and then came to know that visitors were allowed up to 5:30 PM so we were a little lucky that we had 30mins to visit the fort. Really it’s a nice place to visit and was looking like a fort. An old light house is also there that was used to show light / direction to the ships a long time back. While we were finishing the fort it started raining and we run towards our cab and started back to hotel. Luckily it stopped soon and we got some time to visit one more beach”Baaga Beach”. This beach was given first number of beaches we saw there since water was quite clean there and it was safe to have bath there. We reached hotel at 7:00 PM. It again started raining. We had our dinner at 9:00 and went for some shopping.

(@ Curise)

(@ Chopaara Fort)

27 Aug’07: This was the day to return back to home. We started from our hotel at 10:00 AM and the reached to main city and had our break fast and again started for Hubli. Around 2:30 PM we reached at Karwaar Beach. The first expression after seeing this beach was WOW. This was the most beautiful beach we saw in our trip. Water was crystal clear and we could see some small islands from there. Some fishers were fishing that time and their style was a little different and finally they caught a number of fishes. We spent about 45 minutes there and headed towards Hubli. We reached Hubli around 6:00PM and had our dinner there. Then we reached at Railway station on time to catch our train there. By 7:00 AM we were back to Mysore.

(Mast @ Carwar Beach)

Though it was a small and hectic trip to Goa but it enjoyed at the most of it. We are looking forward to visit it again but with some more days.
--- Amit 05/09/07

Friday, August 17, 2007

Mission Gaganchukki ...

15Aug07: It was the 60th Anniversary of freedom of India and we few guys planned to celebrate in somewhere outside not at home sitting just in front of our TV sets. 14Aug we planned to visit GAGANCHUKKI FALLS and in no time we were 15 people who all were ready to go. It is almost 90 KMS from Mysore.
15th Aug at 10:30AM we all met at Mysore Race Course. Wow, it’s was an exciting moment as we all were on bikes and 8 bikes were there. For me it was first chance in was going with this big bike gang. As I named this MISSION, it’s very true as the way we choose to go was really horrible not even 2 / 3 KMS patch was a proper road. As we came out of the city clutch wire of Subbu’s bike got broke but luckily after 1 KM there was a mechanic and we got it fixed and again one more hurdle was waiting for us. On the way there was an accident of a lorry and way was closed and then the way that we took was so good that I am still feeling pain in my back and have the feeling that my bike is jumping while I drive. But out team spirit and beauty of falls was dragging us toward our destination of the day.

We had to drive for 3 hrs and around 1:30 PM we were there at the falls। Most of us were tired of driving that beautiful way and on top of this he day was a little hot and sunny, but it took only few seconds to that tiredness disappeared when we say the falls. It was as beautiful as we say it in few pics and we were expecting it to be.
We were there at the top of the falls for a while and enjoyed its view from top and front. But we could not resist or selves for long to go down and enjoy the water from a closer distance. In other 10 minutes we all were at the down of the falls. The view here was really awesome. Though the flow of water was very high but still few point were there where people were enjoying water and having fun inside the water.

While leaving for the falls from Mysore none of us was in a mood to go inside the water and more over we were not sure that we would get a chance of it as well. But when we reached there and saw people, we could not stop our desire to have fun in water there and we all went in to the water fully dressed as we were not carrying any shorts, any other dress or anything to have pleasure of water. We had fun in water for long and when we came out of water, we realized we were there in water for almost 2 hrs.

Then we had some snacks we carried with us as we knew we would not get god stuff there to eat। Now our watches were showing almost 5:10 PM and we headed back for Mysore but no one was ready to 5take same way we came so we took another way which was a bit longer। This time we were on a right way as road was good and we came back to Mysore by 7:15 PM.

Really it was a nice trip we suddenly planned and had great fun there। I would suggest that one should go there at least once for sure.
Members of mission: Amit Sharma, Abhijeet, Raghunandan, Naveen, Dony, Suhesh, Ganesh, Sangram, Kiran Prasad, Mahesh, Venkat, Arun Goyal, Parshant, Lingaraju and Raju S.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Fun in Waynaad

Waynaad! No, this is not the time to go there। It’ll be raining heavily there these days and you will not enjoy anything, so it is not advisable going there these days. We always got this reply whenever we asked anybody about Waynaad. We all (Me, Abhijeet, Arun and Vaibhav) tired of listening to these words as day by day our desire to visit Waynaad was getting at its peak and we were almost crazy to go there, since it had been more than 3 months thinking for this trip॥ So, finally we decide to gamble and take a risk on our luck and planned a trip to Waynaad. I and Arun did lot of goggling and gathered information and finally I booked hotel and taxi for the day in one week advance so that we there would not be any last moment hassle.

And finally the day came when we had to move for one of our dream destinations “Waynaad” in Kerala, the state which is known as “GODs own country”! 21’st July2007 was that day.

Day-1- 21’st July2007:
According to plan we had to start early in the morning so that we could see the sunrise in Bandi Pur National Park, that is on the way from Mysore to Waynaad. So, I and Arun awaked up in the morning at 4:30AM and got ready by 5:30 AM and left for Abhijeet’s home to pick him up, but rest two were not ready. Taxi came as the given time 6.00AM sharp but we were late and started at 6:45AM. I don’t think there is any need to say how much excited we were. Since it was rainy season we were all packed. We were having water proof jackets, umbrellas, floaters and other stuff along with medicines for any emergency.
Our first stop was at Nanjangud to have our breakfast and then we headed towards our destination. On the way there was town / village “GUDELPET”, this was the location we took our first snap. Road was clean and we good see great sceneries and we did not leave this opportunity. Our photo freak Mr. Abhijeet is always ready for such things. We were enjoying the beauty of Kerala. It’s really very green and that greenery is too dense also. We reached Kalpetta Town almost at 11:00 AM; here we had already booked our room. We checked in to the Hotel and left for our first site scean” BANASURA DAM”. This is supposed to be the largest earth dam in India. This is almost 20 Km from Kalpetta town. The site which is open for people to visit is mainly for boating but in rainy season it is not allowed. We can do Steamer/ Motor boating here. The water here is very quiet and clear and surrounding of the DAM are really awesome. It was completely covered by clouds. After spending about an hour we left for the town to have out lunch.

We had out lunch in the hotel itself and it was our one of the worst food experiences and on top of that it was too expensive 500 bucks for 5 people for a tasteless food. Then we headed towards “POOKOTE LAKE”, which is about 13 KMS from the centre of the town. We were there at the lake about 3:15 PM and as soon as we reached it started raining. This was the first rain for us in Waynaad. Initially it was looking like that rain will take long to stop but luck was with us and it stopped in 30 minutes. Then we did boating in the lake. This lake is a fresh water lake nested above wooded hills, is the only one of its kind in Kerala. A fresh water aquarium with large variety of fish is an added attraction. It is one of Waynaad's top visitor draws. Really water in side was quite clear and it was not stinky at all. View of the forest surrounding the lake was good enough to draw visitors’ attention and make them to take a round of it which is about 2 KMS in circumference. This we can do on foot, a horse ride or horse cart. No doubt place is worth visiting.

By the time we were done with boating and the forest visit of Pookote lake, it was 4:45 by our watch and we planned to see “LAKDDI”, a view point of a valley in Waynaad. View of valley was amazing from there. Since the rain just stopped and Sun was trying to throw out some of this shine and sky was full of black and milky clouds. Rays of Sun was increasing the beauty of this scenery by trying to come out of the clouds.

This was supposed to be the last site for the day as rest of the places were about 25 KMS far at least so we thought to visit them next day. Suddenly something freaking stroked in my mind and I said to Vaibhav,” Should we try for Kozhikode?” and answer was ‘YES”. Yes, Kozhikode is a beach in city Calicut and that was about 55-60 KMS from there and almost 20KMS in Hill. I asked a guy whether we should go or not. He told me it was not advisable to drive in that hill in night in rainy season as it was too risky but there was not restriction from Administration. This is always more than enough for four enthusiastic guys and again we decided to take a risk. Earlier where we were not ready to go for 25 KMS (one side) inside the town itself we changed our mind to go for 60 KMS (one side) outside the town and that too in night in hills. In this one condition was that we had to come back to kalpetta town in night as he had already paid for our hotel and more over stay in Calicut may spoil our next day. Really a strange /daring and might be foolish decision, but that time we all were in a passion to see the beach and had a faith that God was helping us.

We started for Calicut/ Kozhikode beach about 5:00 PM. We were going on our way to Calicut and enjoying the beauty of hill, that beauty which is not easy to describe in words, that just someone can see and feel. When we reached almost 50 KMS, I asked the way and distance for beach. I was sitting on front seat and rests were on back. I asked a man about the distance and then something happened that we could not believe at all and were shocked. We were blank for some time. The person told me the distance and the way he spoke it listened to be 80Km from that location. Imagine you just 5-6 hours to drive 120KMS out of which 40KMS in hills and visit a place you are dying to see and you are starting at 5:00 PM in a rainy season evening in Kerala and someone says your destination is 80Km far what will be the expression on face and will come in your mind. The back sitters thought to return back to Kalpetta and I was the one who was thinking to go another 10KMS to see the place which made us to be in this situation when we were nothing but big fools. But when we try to clarify the matters we came to know it was just 8KMS from there. Then we took a sigh of relief. Then we moved ahead and lost the way as it was a one way. Try to understand our situation, we are running very short of time , we are dying to see beach and that is just 1KM apart from us and we are not getting the clue of the way to reach there. But at least we reach there and out watch were showing 6:45PM.

The first word we did not say, we almost shouted was”WOW”, three of us (I. Arun and Vaibhav) were seeing the beach for the first time. Though this beach was not that great but seeing the beach for the first time was really an amazing experience. It was all surrounded by black clouds and looking awesome. Soon it became dark and we could just enjoy the sea for 30 minutes or so. But it was unforgettable. We did a video shoot there as well. After having BHEL PURI there now it was time to move back at clock was showing 7:45PM. We started and were on the right track and suddenly slightly it started raining but it was ok. By the time we reached in Hills we realized the advice we got. It was completely dark if we saw at back side. We were not able to see anything hardly 15-20 feet’s from us and front side. My God it was completely misty. Because of clouds it was completely invisible again even 10 feet’s was not to make out. Our driver was driving very carefully and we were helping him to make out the way and finally he decided to drive on the white/ yellow line on the road and to follow some vehicle.

We reached Kalpetta about 10Pm and again one more struggle was waiting of us. In Kerala, getting vegetarian food is not easy and that too in a small town and after 10PM, big task! After searching about 5 hotels (only that many were open and were wrapping up). But this time food was good and then we reached hotel at 11PM.
Next day it was the Birthday of Vaibhav on 22’nd July, so earlier we had a plan to give him a surprise party but that plan washed out as we got too late in Calicut , so we changed it to give him birthday bumps. By the time the clock gave a beep of 12:00 He got busy on phone and we were waiting for him, and finally when he came we were dead tired and could just wish him his birthday.

Day-2-22’nd July2007:
We thought to move early but again we could leave hotel by 9.00AM and then we had our breakfast. It was boiled eggs and dosa. This time it was good so we had heavy breakfast and headed for our next place, “SOOCHIPARA WATERFALLS” that’s 22 KMs from the town. We had to climb / walk about 1.5 KMs to reach this falls. The way was a little dangerous and slippery. Finally we reach the fall and it was surrounded by some rocks. It was a milky fall and too much noisy. Water was crystal clear and cold. Again this fall was completely surrounded by back clods. The view was really awesome. When we were returning from fall it again started raining and we went in to a shade and had some team and we were wet a little.

Now only one destination was left and that was “Edakkal Caves” that was about 26 KMs from town. It is at the height 4000 feet’s from sea level. These are natural cave. Edakaal means in between and by the name the caves are made of rock in which middle / covering rock in naturally sucked in between two vertical rocks. This was discovered in 1890 by some English army troops. We can see some pictures that show it is almost 4000 BC old cave. View from the cave is nice and thrilling. We could see huge area and jungle from there. The pain that we got in good steep climbing up about 1.5 KMs to reach at the top, got lost in a moment when we saw the scenery from there. At 4:15 PM we started back from the cave and at 5:00 PM we were on the Mysore road and Mysore was about 110 KMs from there.

On the way to Mysore in Bandi Pur , we got to see a group of elephants along with baby elephants. When they saw us they tried to hide themselves behind the trees. We took few snaps of them and started for our home. 8:15PM we were at our home in Mysore.
Really it was an amazing trip that can be never forgotten। It was supped to be a leisure trip that turned to a little thrilling / adventures trip. It was our luck and God grace even the thing that we going against us finally turned out to be beneficial for us. Thanks to God for such a wonderful trip.
Now at last the biggest thrill of the trip. We hired a taxi from Mysore. We all are from North India and none of us know any language other than Hindi and English (Abhijeet knows Marathi as he is from Mumbai). Our Mr. Driver, he was great. He was going first time to Waynaad and Calicut. He did not know Hindi and English both. On top of that Waynaad being a kind of hill station and a town you get hardly 2- 3 % people who understand English and about Hindi, forget it.
Though people have different opinions, but we would suggest visiting Waynaad in winter or at the start of rainy season and when end of rainy season. If you are going in this time better make all preparation in some time advance. Please make sure that you have someone who can understand Malayalam. All the places in Waynaad are scattered, so please plan the route before leaving.
All the best and have a nice trip to Waynaad!!! I am still dreaming...
--- Amit 23/07/07