Monday, October 13, 2008

Time Out

The dust settles, and two wide grins behind the windscreen of a Mahindra Bolero welcome us. We pile in, luggage and all. Gears shift and we are off bumping up the road and it looks like we must mandatorily pay our respects to all the craters visible and invisible. Intermittently snapped up by the dark when Mr A switches off the headlights, we are headed to Craigmoore Estates in Polibetta. Wiki says that Polibetta has an excellent 9 hole golf course. I am more into 9 course meals and such like, a liberal dose of spirits before the meal included.
A neatly trimmed hedge with the board proclaiming the estate’s Scottish descent greets you at the gate. A rubbly path leads you down; over a rectangular strip of grass trimmed by the underside of the wagon; onto a wide area dropping you off at the rear entrance. Saddam, the “One Eyed Dalmatian” stands guard along with “Bingo the Canine Baring”. A whine escapes its throat, and it’s reassured of our credentials.

The sun smiles down on the red esplanade and matching mansard roof. Tea in one hand (bear in mind we are in a coffee estate), nicotine stick in the other, mundane talk happens. The call is heard and we flock to the breakfast table like the faith full. Rice rotis, chicken fry, a delectable fish curry and mutton gravy stare at you from behind covered plates and pots. Our own plates filled, liberal helpings of ghee heaped on to the rotis, we settle in for a journey where the taste buds are taken for a gentle spin much like on a coracle. Cells refurbished, we open the board, for a game of Monopoly. Freshly squeezed lime juice washes down the remnants of breakfast. As the others progress to build houses and hotels on Mayfair and Strand, money and sites mysteriously vanish from my portfolio, as mysteriously as a chilled beer landing in my hand.

Lunch was another cell bursting explosion of chicken biryani and other meaty dishes. Some of us retire to the esplanade conversing under an open canvas parasol. The others head to their beds. Afternoon siesta over Mr A groups us like a mother hen gathering her young. Walking (more like prodding others backside) sticks cut off from trees the estate walk starts off.

Parallel paths made by the wheels of a wagon, cut through the Arabica branching off in all directions. Balls of pepper, young and green, peep sheepishly from behind vines. Huge conifers bend matronly, over the coffee, providing shade. Crickets chirp as cameras click, suddenly going silent as we pass close to their hide-outs. Mr A and CEO G, deep in their own triumphs and worries of looking over coffee estates lead us through copses and grasslands till we reach a narrow mud path hanging over emerald paddy fields. Suddenly Mr A says we need to back track and leads us up another grassy slope, to a dilapidated structure, below which lie the estate deities, adorned by flowers and other votive offerings. A strange tranquillity descends on the soul, as hands are joined and silent prayers emanate from the devotees lips.

The walk continues, this time finally settling at the banks of a largish pond. Guava trees sprout from the muddy banks, fruit hanging waiting to turn ripe and be picked. An abandoned shed waits in anticipation for people during an unexpected downpour. A bench made of planks makes a good photo opportunity for the cameras accompanying the nature walkers. We continue and are almost back home as the auburn sloping roof comes into view.

Bath and other ablutions complete, it is time for the spirits to take over for the night. Bottles of varied hues and shapes appear, as does a dusty unused hookah. Poisons chosen, the hookah turned out to be a bummer and was quickly replaced by the ever dependable Gold Flake Kings.
A short précis of the eventful night could be written thus- pole dances, more imbibing of spirits, pulling down of pajamas, raunchy jokes, all round debauchery, et al.

The next morning found me with a chainsaw splicing the head. While the others played another round of Monopoly I preferred the comfort of my bed, resting the aching cerebrum. Lunch, this time starred a cashew rich ghee rice, ably supported by mutton fry and yellow tadka dal. The bed beckoned again and I followed like a moth to a flame. Hours were passing, and soon after a 'pick me up' for the previous night’s escapades and dinner, we were all packed and delivered to the bus stop.

As we wait for our bus a magical mist envelopes us, trees appear ghoul like, adding to the eeriness. A sudden feeling of indebtedness comes over me, a feeling of thank fullness to Hazrat Dada Hayat Mir Kalandhar, the Sufi mystic who noticed an uncharacteristic burst of activity in goats which consumed a particular seed. He returned to India with seven of these seeds snugly tucked in his robes and planted them in the Baba Budan Hills. The descendants of this strain were later transferred to other locations, including the Arabica through which we walked the previous evening. I close my eyes and the magic seeps in, quiet and peace reigns.


Half baked, never kept
Hypocrite you rant
Bastard and what not
Silent I shall remain
Time will come
When I fly the coop
Jailed till then
Beating blue funk
Drunk as a skunk
I will wander
Exploring ladder theories
And Gorky Parks
Dots and lines join us
Hemoglobulus fluids too
Antipathy I cannot offer
The truth will blow when you agnise
I am mine.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


On the way to Melkote last week, I saw a truck with a North Indian registration. On the look out for funny messages usually painted at the back of trucks, this particular one struck me for the owners/drivers benevolence-"Buri nazar wale, tera bhi bhala ho."
Also on the trip was a movie placement never heard of or thought of before. My biggest scoop so far...

Saturday, September 13, 2008

DVG and back

'Tis 5AM in the morning and MG is nowhere to be seen. The train leaves at 6 and we need to employ the services of an auto rickshaw, a task easier said than done at that hour. Finally his number flashes on my cellphone. He is 2 minutes away from home. I hitch the backpack onto my shoulders and wait at the gate. He jumps out of his car, snatches his bag from the back, waves a bye to his father who groggily shifts into the drivers seat, recently vacated by MG. The car shifts gears and moves out slowly. Suddenly MG swears out loud and waves and beckons his dad to see him waving in the rear view mirror and runs after the fast disappearing Santro. The tail lights turn right leaving the now distraught MG in the middle of the road, slowly his head lifts, a call is made home to inform his mother that the cars auto locking system broken and in MG's hand now will have to be later collected from my house. The broken piece of electronica safely deposited on my window sill, instructions discretely given to my parents, its time to find that elusive auto rickshaw. Minutes pass by, MG's yakking barring, the streets are silent. Finally the puttering of auto in the distance, hope fluttering we search the length of the road. From the far end a faint light suddenly bursts, searching, prodding, moving ahead in search of a prey. We wait. It passes, it already has had its fill. The driver smiles ruefully. We march ahead. The sequence repeats itself twice and then finally we see him. Our redeemer. How much, we ask? One and half he says. We look at the watches, hem and haw and quietly climb in.

Our redeemer deposits us outside the City railway station. The digital clock says we have 15 minutes to book our tickets and board the train at platform 8. We start running. We reach the advance booking counter, only to be told that advance booking for the Jan Shatapdi which will pass through our destination Davanagere is closed. We curse out loudly. We plead. The man behind the glass wall shakes his head, and politely asks us to make way for the man behind us. We curse again. Resigning to the fact that advance booking counter will not help us we run to the current booking counter. Touts block our way, Chennai, Chennai, they say. We reach the counter, worm like lines spout from glass walls similar to the advance booking counter. A flurry of hands and heads bob jostling for space and their tickets, their only key to the other side, the key to break their shackles, their key to freedom.

We give up and walk out of the station. Breakfast first, cells rejuvenated, we decide to take the bus. What escaped our senses at that time was the bumpy, bone rattling experience ahead of us on NH 4.

Tickets bought, we sat back in our seats. Finding a comfortable spot which would immediately shift every time we careened over a road hump or a crater. Just as the first signs of sleep started peeping from below my eyelids a strong assault was made and this time not on the coccyx but the nostrils. A heady smell of sweat mingled with the nauseating red beetel and to add to the melee a hairful of jasmine. And a battalion of such like women. Resigning to my fate I inched closer to the window in search of the redeeming fresh air, occasionally peeking at the Kannada paper in front of me in search of movie tag lines. None piqued my interest. Not the likes of "Madesha-You walk...You die."

The hours passed by, as did the towns and villages. Finally after three rounds of assaults by the fast recuperating jasmine laden, beetel chomping, sweat emanating ladies I surrendered at Davanagere.

Having been ably guided by the great MG we arrived serendipitously at a certain restaurant, the name of which I currently forget. The food, was the very opposite, with some succulent chicken kebabs, including a reshmi kebab which was covered in actual cotton candy reshmi. Meal complete, we headed to our host's house. A neat apartment with the usual messiness of a bachelor, but with complete amenities, beer apart.
What did we do in Davanagere you might ask? Ummmm... we watched Speedracer(completely tripped out), went out for a stroll around Gundy Park, did a walking tour of my host's college(in itself a primer on the labyrinthine culture of the place) , had tea(aside:the host drinks tea at this particular shop) had a milk shake with host's friend, went for dinner and returned to host's house to watch Wanted.
The highlight of the evening was probably the ride back from our restaurant of when we were stopped by a policeman who asked us for ids and licenses and other such administrative requirements. Thankfully we were able to prove our credentials except for the host's bike's insurance policy paper, which had lapsed. The renewed policy was safely tucked in at home, unaware of the trouble his absence was causing. Matters eased out when the policeman was assured of its existence and attempts made to bring it to him while I waited with him observing his monotonous nocturnal routine. He let us go and we were ready for the late show, Wanted.

The next morning we groggily made off to the Benne Dose shop which had dissappointed us the previous evening. Having had our fill of the crunchiest outers and softest inners of a dosa ever with a potato masala and tantalising chutney, we returned to our host's house now sans him to watch a third movie, A Wednesday. And what a movie it is! Crystal sharp, searing dialogues, skilled craftsmen at their best. Naseerudin Shah exceeded himself as the common man taking religious fundamentalism by its horns and yanking it off. I especially liked the scene towards the end where he almost forgets his grocery. Movie over, lunch eaten, this time a nice veg pulav and some ghee roast, we head back to the KSRTC bus stand, the lead cause for the spurt in practitioners of chiropracty. The journey back was much the same, though this time it was longer and darker. The ladies were there, eveready with there assault weaponary. I pressed for a mercy plea and occupied a window seat.

We reached Bangalore at about 21:30 hrs. After a hasty zinger meal, I was back home exactly 2 hours before my 23rd Onam. Happy feasting followed.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Pickbrain am I missing an R somewhere?

Watching Pickbrain is nauseating. Caught the Pune round of TATA Crucible on tv and it was an excruciating 2 minutes, thats as long as I could bear him. Cant imagine how we sat through various quizzes of his as a contestant and I think one as a member of the audience. Having observed him at close quarters on stage on a couple of occasions here are a few observations:
1) The man is excitable at the drop of a hat. You could argue that he is enthusiatic about his compereing and wants to play to the gallery. Sorry sir, its a farce which comes through right in your face. By the end of the "show" you can be rest assured you have attended a stage show of the crassest variety, "subtle" humour (read as making digs at the contestants when they give answers which are related to industries of the processed latex variety) lines most of his one liners. His "superbs" and other superlatives restricted to "brilliant" and "excellent" delivered at audibly defeaning decibels bore your ear and yourself to death.
2) Veritably pompous, he likes the attention bestowed on him by serville sycophants who throng around him like those who bow at the feet of godmen of the Sri'do' variety.
3) Everything is played according to a script, even a slight deviation from the original and he is left gasping like a fish out of water.
All these are detterents to attend his quizzes, sorry "shows" but the money is good, though coming across it has also become tough for me, who am I kidding it was only Tata Crucible 2006, campus edition that clicked for me, hopefully not the last. I will continue attending his "shows", after all as someone said there are whores and then there are quizzers.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Moving On

Seasons change. Situations change. Everything changes, people included. Like a river, change flows, eternal and ever-moving. Thats the truth. If you cant handle it, dont attempt to live on half truths and a false sense of well being. Enough sermonising...
This last week I saw Rock On. Its decent in the fact that its attempted to cover a band and its aspirations, the tensions among them, how things fall apart after the juvenile star status makes them think nothing can bring them down (things definitely can) and how they re group for their swansong. The tag line LIVE YOUR DREAM on the whole looks like a chapter from a self help book on the lines of Robin Sharma. Urbane, cool, appealing to the metro-multiplex yuppies, all in all a good entertainer.
In spite of all the hype and slick marketing for Rock On, Mumbai Meri Jaan, made a quiet entrance at the multiplexes (sadly there are hardly any stand alone theatres near home). It was absolutely brilliant. Tight in its composition, gritty portrayals and, for lack of any other superlatives, brilliant performances by Paresh Rawal and Kay Kay Menon. It revolves around five interlinking characters a la "Crash" around the July 7th Bombay Local Train Blasts. Worth every paisa you spend in buying a ticket apprx 180 bucks on a weekend evening show.
Coming back to the moving on part.... I will be shifting from my current employers within a couple of days time. The first 2 years and 3 months of my corporate career have been spent in the company of wonderful individuals with their idiosyncrasies, loves, hates, moods, et al. Its with a tear gleaning my eye that I will have to bid adieu to A, M and the others. I will miss the innumerable lime teas on Edward Road, the full meals at Eden Park, the Nico(man) across our office. Monday morning con calls, extended lunches, book hunting during office hours, attempts to set the lovelorn life right, New Fund Offer madness,FMPs, Gold Fund NAVs, call report by Friday 6PM, less than 36 hrs in Goa trips and most of all the "BLADE". Thank you S,A,M you have sharpened me:-)
Endure. The memories will remain, soon to be laminated in sepia in some corner of my brain, untouched till a trigger happens. Time to move on, flow, experience, see more, learn more.

Monday, August 4, 2008


Open roads lead
to the back-lanes of the mind
of an unending journey.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Goon and Friends- The Preview

Goon and Friends
"what are friends for?"
Alternate tagline-Nuts Forever
Tentative Release Date: 12/12/2008 (interesting trivia, the release date has been scheduled to time with the birth date of our very own MOTTE BOSS- Rajanikanth-The Boss.
For updates watch this space.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

XXIII and Wayanad

Its been a year since I turned 22. And I have posted only 17 times in the mean time! According to Paul Theroux who I had the privilege of meeting( rather hearing) a couple of months back at a author/reader interactive session in a bookshop and also most other wordsmiths- To become a writer one needs to assiduously put pen to paper daily. Laziness, lack of time, writers block, matters of the heart and mind, et al prevent me from writing more frequently, not necessarily in that order.
I complete 2 years of work at my present employer on the 26th of this month. A time to introspect on how my career path is shaping up, what steps do I take it more solid and endearing. As of now I am mentally ready to change jobs, sectors from sales to marketing/communication. Any openings please do let me know.
Tripping continued. Wayanad was covered during the last weekend of May. A light drizzle welcomed us as we drove into Kalpetta, our base. Check in, lunch, and rest later it was too late to visit any of the sight seeing worthy places, so we took the road to Kozhikode which leads through about 25km of winding hairpin bends. An undulating ebb of green rises up and down like a calm ocean. After having a good laugh at the thought of a comic scene from a Malayalam movie of how Kuduravattom Pappu manages to negotiate the same stretch of road at high speeds on his roadroller, we headed back to our hotel.
The next morning our first stop was Soochi Para Falls or Sentinel Falls. The road leading to this falls was through a velvety green tea estate, which was explored with many a photo opportunity. The falls per se were a delight. Stripped to our innerwear we spent the better half of an hour getting pounded by crystal clear water falling from a height of close to 40 feet. Water sports later it was time for lunch. Full meals at Hotel Afsaa (completely Muslim sounding place, serving pure Veg fare, liberal doses of garlic included!) later it was back on the sight seeing circuit, the Pookote Lake.
We hired a boat for 4 and got midway through the ride when a heavy drizzle started which converted itself into a full fledged cloud burst. The boatman quickly sculled us to safety under a couple of trees on the bank. Five minutes later we were all drenched. The boatman suggested that since we were already wet now, we could complete the ride. So off we went in the rain, which had eased off a bit by now. Water water everywhere.....couldnt be more apt. A cormorant perched on the water buoy continued its hunt for fish inspite of the rain.
On the way back to the hotel we paid our respects to the Chain Tree. The tree is believed to have the soul of a local ghoul chained to it. The next morning we proceeded to Thirunelli, a temple town about 60 km from Kalpetta. The 3000 year old temple dedicated to Vishnu towers over the settlement on top of a hill. The Papanishini stream flows nearby. According to myth, Garuda was flying over the stream with 'Amrita' when a drop of the divine nectar fell into it, rendering it so pure, that it turned into a purifying spot, with redeeming qualities. A dip in the stream is essential as part of the last rites for your parents. The stream being quite empty, did not look inviting enough for me to take a dip to purge my sins.
The return drive turned out to be quite an adventure, with a new route which according to the mile stone would have cut distances by about 40km. The road soon disappeared to a pothole filled semblance of a road, and finally into just a mud path. According to a villager who we stopped for directions the road had not been repaired from the days of the Wodeyars, 50 odd years back. The 25km stretch took us close to two hours to conquer, leaving us with a punctured tire in Mysore 70 km later. Apart from accosting black faced langurs, a peacock who crossed our path and a couple of elephants in the distance we were kept company by various interesting noises from the jungle. The rest of the journey passed off uneventfully with a break for refreshments at Dasaprakash for Masala Dosa, Bonda and Coffee.
The punctured tire replaced we continued to Bangalore. An adventurous weekend behind us, the traffic on Mysore Road brought us back to reality, pollution and the sad fact that the next day was work as usual.

Sunday, May 25, 2008


I did ask you,
It is true.
Questions asked,
Answers denied.
I wait and wait,
At your gate.
Down the corner,
Like a foreigner.
Shunned by his own state,
Cursing my fate.
Looking for a sign;
Hopes benign.
Weeks pass by,
I try and try.
From the day I was born,
I remain lovelorn.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Whats your trip?

It certainly feels good to own this machine than collecting fancy watches and pens.

It feels better to let the wind through your bald head.

It feels best when you know that each weekend ahead of you, you are on a trip with nothing more than a backpack and the open road ahead of you.

Ladies and gentlemen, yours truly is now the proud owner of a Royal Enfield Bullet Machismo.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

The Indian Wall (of shame) Comes Down

I exercised my suffrage toady for the first time. The indelible ink stained my left index finger and I pressed the blue button against the ............ symbol. It did feel nice later, that you had helped decide who would set your policies and laws. Hopefully it is for the best. Heres a wish-list for the new government......
1) Cheaper booze.
2) Watering holes to be open in Bangalore till 2 AM.
3) METRO in place by end of 2009.
4) Well tarred roads everywhere.
5) Close all malls and open more shopping streets.
6) Adding on to number 5 open more stand alone theatres.
5 and 6 might not be the best of requests to the new government, but 1 and 2 i believe definitely are.

Jokes apart I was surprised to read that in spite of the right to adult franchise and India being the largest democracy and what not, there existed a wall in Uthapuram near Madurai which divided the Dalits from the upper castes. Though the 600 m long wall was put up to avoid further clashes between the warring factions of the lower caste Dalits and the upper caste Hindu Pillaimars in 1989 on the jointly taken decision of the leaders on both fronts, it took nearly two decades for any government to oppose the idea. The Dalits who form a majority in the village till date could not access any of the main areas of the village and faced discrimination in a very subtle but shameful manner. The government finally said the wall had to come down and was demolished(not fully, as a portion was retained to remind people of such atrocities) on Tuesday, 6th May 2008 as the situation had become so aggravated that the wall had an electrified fence on it to prevent Dalits from crossing over during the nights. The dividing wall has been brought down, but apart from the literal division going, when will the cultural and attitudinal wall fall? When will oneness reign?

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Misty Mountain Hop

The winding open road beckoned again, so off we went to Kodaikanal, the last among the jewels of the hill stations of Tamil Nadu, completing the quartet of Yelagiri, Yercaud, Ooty( covered over the last 8 months) and of aforementioned destination.
The timing couldnt have been better. Our Natural Resources and New Energy NFO closed on a dismal note, collecting a grand total of 230 Crs as against a planned collection of 1800 crs or there abouts. The sibling's exams had finished. And Monday, being Ugadi was an optional holiday, optional as the stock exchanges were working, and we close officially only when the stock exchanges are closed, made the weekend a long one. So what better thing to do than take off on a road trip.
Friday morning loomed faster than I expected, I slept at 1:00 in the morning and had to wake up at 3:00! A quick brush up later we were silently driving through the darkness, the only car among a dozen trucks on Hosur Road. Though apprehensive of the Hoggenakal mobs around Krishnagiri and Dharmapuri we safely passed through till our breakfast stop just before Salem. We were saved by the early departure I guess for the next morning's paper carried a photo of a KSRTC bus in flames. After passing through Rasipuram, presumably the native town of the famous RK Narayan and Laxman, Karur (my local neighbourhood banker) Namakkal (famous for its bus building services) and Dindigul (famous for making locks) we had left the dusty plains behind us.
We wound our way up intermittently stopping to click photos and gaze at distant waterfalls shimmering in the afternoon sunlight.

Kodai town or rather the touts there welcomed us with the usual furore of race enthusiasts waiting for their favourite driver to cross the checkered flag. The smart guys who noticed the KA number plate started off in Kannada, "Cottage beka saar?" "Banni saar, room ide, guide beka saar?" Ignoring their plaintive cries we headed to the TTDC hotel where our bookings had been made. A second quick brush up, bread omelet and tea later I was hit the sack. It had been 10 hours of driving, a majority of the miles covered while yours truly was behind the wheel, so sleep was essential. But we did go out for a short evening stroll to savour the cold and see our breathe turning into a mild mist in front of our faces.
The next morning a lazy sun nudged us up with great difficulty from between our blankets. After downing a rather filling breakfast of Dosa, Pongal, Vada and tea, it was time to set the limbs in motion at Coakers Walk, a kilometer or more long pathway along the edge of a hill, the name of which I forget. Though hawkers had set up shop on one side of the walk selling trinkets, woollen clothing, ice cream, carrots and a whole lot of other things the view along the walk made up for whatever shortcomings or disturbance they were the cause for. Verdant rolling hills sprawled below, in various hues of green, low cumulus suddenly covering everything from sight. Cars snaked up on the winding roads like ants. Couples hands locked in eternal love smiled at each other. Time stood still for them, until a bunch of probably drunk visitors decided that screaming their lungs out from the top of the hill was a good way to entertain themselves.
Next stop was at Pillars Rock (viewpoint) considering the rock itself was in front of us. A jagged V shaped protuberance alternatively getting covered by the clouds. Though I felt that I should have stood there for some more time to capture the various moods of the cloud covered rock the bus loads of tourists predominantly from my home state prevented me from doing any justice. A short drive from Pillars Rock is the Green Valley View Point formerly known as Suicide Point as the board claims. The approach to the point is lined, by shops, this time on both sides, selling wares varying from homemade chocolates to sea shells! The point itself is barricaded by a high pointy fence. Monkeys with swishing tails though were not apprehensive about the drop below as they patiently waited to be captured on camera, sacrificing their privacy and inhibitions for scraps of food and drink.
Twilight led us to the Kurinji Andavar Temple. Devotional songs and incense sticks along with the sweet smell of jasmine greeted us at the entrance to the temple. In a corner a rectangular piece of land, about 2 feet by 6 feet, sprouted the kurinji plant, the plant whose purplish blue flowers which blossom once in 12 years lends its name to the Nilgiris. A board above it proclaimed that the flowers would blossom next in 2018. Incidentally we had witnessed the flowers in bloom in 2006 in Munnar.
Night descended quietly as we wound ourselves back to the town after having stopped at the Chettiar Botanical Garden. The Kodai International School with its campus bang in the middle of the town was host to a rock show, the last event of their cultural fest I believe. Strains of Megadeth, Metallica and the screams of 100s of hyper active teens floated along with the harsh calls of street hawkers peddling their wares.
The lake is probably the most attractive sight of the town. A large limpid span of water which looks even more attractive during the night reflecting the twinkling lights from nearby hotels and other buildings. Almost 4 kilometers in circumference, walking around it is an ideal way to work up an appetite before dinner, also to soak in the milieu around the boat house with its various nik nak shops and tea stalls. Though a round on the cycle also wouldnt have been a bad idea. This done, followed by a warm dinner of phulkas and aloo ras later, it is time to do another round of the lake, this time in the comforts of the car.

Day three of the trip started with me making a visit to the Forest Office to seek a letter of permission to visit the Berijam Lake Reserve. The letter having been signed and authorised we turned towards Berijam, a mere 21 kilometers away as the map claimed, only to turn out to be 45 kilometers, almost half way to Munnar across the border in Kerala! The route was so scenic, passing through thick pine forests, lush meadows and copses with rivulets gurgling through them that finally the distance didnt matter. What disappointed us though was that once we reached the forest office check point and this was 9 kilometers from the actual point we were informed that we couldnt go further as a large tree had conveniently decided to place itself in the middle of the road. After much debate whether the tree had naturally fallen or was planted in the middle of the road to prevent people from visiting the place and hot words exchanged with the forest official we traced our tracks back to the town with a pit stop at a point where a board claimed it was a view point of the Palani Hills. Half a day wasted because of a communication gap among the forest officials. Damn!
The evening turned out to be more fruitful with three beautiful places covered. First was the Upper Lake View Point from where we could see the entire lake in all its shimmering glory with little paper like boats gliding on its surface. That was followed by a visit to the Fairy Falls, a quaint little falls inside the Horticultual Research Institute campus. True to its name it fell like a white curtain quietly from a small cliff, in an environment which greatly evoked of a sense of being transported to an Enid Blyton world of fairies, elves and pixies among colourful flowers and mushroom shaped houses. The last was an even quieter place with a slightly more thundering falls called Bear Shola Falls. An ideal spot to sit and contemplate the meaning of life and various other philosophical thought processes which might have been ignored so far.
We returned to the town to finish a quick round of shopping, viz home made chocolates and some glass trinkets for the sister. A speedy dinner of Mushroom Sukka, chappati and mix veg curry downed we did a last round of the lake, this time looking oddly eerie with a light fog hanging on the surface of the water and trees dancing spooky shadows in the mellow street lights.

The next morning dawned earlier than anticipated. The drive down the hills was slow. A steady hum of crickets punctuated the air, occasionally broken by the sound of a gushing stream. The sweet piny smelling air slowly disappeared to be replaced by the dusty highway. Cool replaced with heat, reminding us of the harsh summer ahead of us. The hills were left behind, a magical land, of solitude and calm. The words remained in my head though. Respite. Refuge.

Monday, March 17, 2008


To reiterate what is already mentioned in the title:( a sad reference the blog not being updated for the past 3-4 months) man I need to write.....

Son, she said, have I got a little story for you
What you thought was your daddy was nothin but a...
While you were sittin home alone at age thirteen
Your real daddy was dyin, sorry you didnt see him, but Im glad we talked...

Oh i, oh, Im still alive
Hey, i, i, oh, Im still alive
Hey i, oh, Im still alive

Oh, she walks slowly, across a young mans room
She said Im ready...for you
I cant remember anything to this very day
cept the look, the look...
Oh, you know where, now I cant see, I just stare...

I, Im still alive
Hey i, but, Im still alive
Hey i, boy, Im still alive
Hey i, i, i, Im still alive, yeah
Ooh yeah...yeah yeah yeah...oh...oh...

Is something wrong, she said
Well of course there is
Youre still alive, she said
Oh, and do I deserve to be
Is that the question
And if so...if so...who answers...who answers...

I, oh, Im still alive
Hey i, oh, Im still alive
Hey i, but, Im still alive
Yeah i, ooh, Im still alive
Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah