Friday, November 30, 2012

Skywatch Friday - Lonar Crater Lake

For Skywatch Friday today is a place I havent been able to get out of my mind since I returned from my Diwali trip... the Lonar Crater....



Saturday, November 24, 2012

Indian Roller

The Indian Roller is a bird which is quite common all over India, especially Southern India. It is the State bird of Karnataka, and we saw it quite often on our visit to Hampi, Aihole, and Badami.


Friday, November 23, 2012

Vasudev

The name Vasudev reminds us of Vasudeva - the father of Krishna. But Krishna himself was known as Vaasudeva - the son of Vasudeva. And that is what this man is known as too...


Thursday, November 22, 2012

Bangle Sellers

In a country as vast and diverse as India, ornaments vary from region to region just as much as language and customs do. However, one ornament that is used widely all over India is the bangle – whether made of gold or glass, bangles are an inevitable part of a woman’s jewellery, especially during her wedding.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Flying High

We know little of Flags except our National Flag. However, there was a time when India was made up of tiny kingdoms, and each one of them had their own flag! Can you imagine how many varieties of flags there must have been? I have never really been interested in flags, and honestly, can't say that I recognize many, but my interest in flags was aroused when I noticed the one atop Jaigarh Fort. 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Donkeys

We see all kinds of animals on our roads... There are dogs all over the place, cows and buffaloes are seen now and then, goats and sheep are a regular feature as Id approaches, pigs are a common sight, and we even see the odd elephant at times. The only animal we see rarely is the donkey...

Friday, November 16, 2012

And I am back!


I am back from my Diwali trip... and what a trip it has been, memorable for more reasons than I can count! 

We kept to our aim of sticking to public transport, so buses it was, all the way... Well, almost, except for the times we splurged on auto ridesJ. This was the trip when Samhith finally learnt not just to cope with, but also enjoy, travelling by local buses...

He learnt to wriggle in amidst the crowd waiting to get in, find, and reserve us seats! He was impressed when a woman called him to share her seat when he didn’t find one, and when he did find one, he made me proud by giving it up to an old man who was standing in the aisle.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Giant Wood Spider

We were at Sringeri, visiting the Kala Bhairava Temple at one end of the village. We finished our prayers and came out, and as usual, I was trying to get a decent shot of the temple, when a movement on a tree nearby caught my eye. At first, it was difficult to see anything but a huge spider web.. But then, with the camera zoom, I managed to spot the creature that had created that web - a Giant Wood Spider..



Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Mimosa

The Mimosa or touch-me-not is one of the few plants I know the botanical name of. There is something fascinating about how the leaves close at the slightest touch!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Happy Deepavali

It's that time of the year when lamps are lit outside every house and the skies resonate with the colours and sounds of firecrackers. Its Diwali once again... or, to give it its right name - Deepavali - the festival of lights. 

Friday, November 9, 2012

Shivappa Nayaka Palace, Shimoga

As Diwali approaches, I have been re-living our trip last Diwali to Karnataka. We started on a devotional note, visiting SringeriUdupi and Kollur. But that did not stop us having unexpected surprises which had nothing to do with temples, as well as adventures that we had not planned for. We eventually reached our final destination - River Tern Lodge at the Bhadra Reservoir, and after two wonderful days there, headed back home to Mumbai. However, before we called an end to our travels, we still had something to see....

The bus stand at Shimoga was clean, well organised, and had huge posters of all the places you could visit around the city. There were quite a few interesting possibilities, but time was a luxury we did not have. We were due to board a bus back to Mumbai in a few hours, and in that short time, wanted to explore Shimoga. I remembered reading about the Shivappa Nayaka Palace on a couple of friends’ blogs, and decided to head out there. 


Thursday, November 8, 2012

Off again, on another trip!


The biggest festival of the year – Diwali – approaches, and, more than anything, we look forward to the vacation that comes in its stead. We usually celebrate the festival at home, lighting lamps and bursting crackers, but this year, as you know already, we can’t celebrate the festival, and are free to travel.

Snow World, Mumbai


Living in a city where the winter is nonexistent, and snow is something that can only be seen in movies, the prospect of seeing and playing in snow can be a real temptation. The new Snow World at Phoenix Market City at Kurla had been tempting us ever since it opened, especially since it is barely half an hour away from our house. However, actually going there was another matter, and it seemed we needed some extra impetus to drive us there. 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

River Tern Lodge, Bhadra

As Diwali approaches, I have been re-living our trip last Diwali to Karnataka. We started on a devotional note, visiting SringeriUdupi and Kollur. But that did not stop us having unexpected surprises which had nothing to do with temples, as well as adventures that we had not planned for. We eventually reached our final destination - River Tern Lodge at the Bhadra Reservoir, and now, continuing with the story...

River  Tern Bhadra.... the resort is named for the two things which make the place so special – the Bhadra Reservoir, where it is located; and the River Terns, birds which come here every winter, to breed and nest. Most visitors come here to observe the sight of hundreds and hundreds of these birds nesting in the islands from Feb to June each year. We visited in October, and saw a completely different sight – the sight of the reservoir filled almost to the brim, due to the heavy rains, the islands completely submerged. No wonder Samhith thought it was the sea!


Tuesday, November 6, 2012

River Tern Lodge, Bhadra - Getting There

As Diwali approaches, I have been re-living our trip last Diwali to Karnataka. We started on a devotional note, visiting Sringeri, Udupi and Kollur. But that did not stop us having unexpected surprises which had nothing to do with temples, as well as adventures that we had not planned for. Continuing with the story, here is how we eventually reached our final destination - River Tern Lodge at the Bhadra Reservoir.....

“How much longer?” is a constant refrain that we hear from Samhith, no matter where we go. However, this time, it wasn’t Samhith asking the question... it was our auto driver! We were on our way to the River Tern Lodge at the Bhadra Reservoir, from Shimoga, and having missed one bus, and unwilling to wait any longer, had decided to take an auto. 

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