Summer Holiday – Part 1

Took a break from the heat this summer…

June 2012… Decide to go Bengaluru and from there to Coonoor…

Hire an Innova cab, which could comfortably seat the family of four… Small hitch is that three of the family are ladies, with generous luggage, and the cab has no top-carrier… Somehow, Ravi the chauffeur, manages to squeeze the boxes in such a manner, that every inch of car luggage-space is occupied, and the individual pieces of luggage have no air to breathe…

But, we the people, are quite ok…

We start late mid-afternoon and reach Mysore by night. We stay overnight at a hotel, and start off next morning, to drive across to Coonoor…

Mysore is a lovely place… Still retains an old world charm, and a certain timelessness that can only be experienced in rural India…

Here’s the view, as we step out of the hotel. Nice, bright looking horse-tonga…

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We drive off… As I look around, I am reminded of RK Narayanan’s Malgudi… Its all there…

The roads are broad and good…

We drive past a bright looking temple…

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An hour or two later (ah yes, the timeless mood has already set in… The mind has logged off from the time machine…)…

We arrive at a Cafe-Coffee day, somewhere along the way… This is a great thing about Karnataka… They have these Cafe-Coffee day eateries at strategic places, and you would almost certainly find one after a few hours of driving down any of the roads near Bengaluru or Mysooru.. Ah that reminds me.. The name Mysooru is Angreji version derived from the traditional name Mahishooru… Named after the demon Mahisha Asura who ruled here… Mahisha was a being who was of the form of a wild buffalo… Goddess Chamundeshwari killed him, here…  And so there is the temple of Chamundeshwari on top of the Chamundi hills, at whose base is Mahishooru…

But we are away now, and halt at the Cafe… Nice place…

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After a nice snack and coffee, we move on…

The road is not bad… And there’s greenery that is thickening as we go ahead…

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It is evident that we are entering nature’s preserve… And yes, we are driving through a wild life sanctuary…

Picture this… The Mudumalai tiger sanctuary…

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We spot no tigers though…

But we do spot some other of nature’s friends…

Quite suddenly, on our right, we see this..

Two elephants ambling down the forest path, towards the road…

And then we see this… A group of elephants, not far from us…

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Our chauffeur tells us that we are lucky…. Not easy to spot elephants so easily, he says.. Happy that luck is with us. Thank the Lord Ganesha!

And thank Goddess Chamundeshwari! For soon, in the daze of distance, we see a Mahisha!

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We are all very pleased… Spotting a wild-buffalo too! A bison! Great!

Driving on, we soon arrive at the base of the blue mountain… The Nilgiris…

The drive up to Coonoor has thirty six hair pin bends…. At every bend, there is a sign giving the number…. We go towards bend number 30 of 36, below…

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We soon arrive at the entrance of Coonoor… Pronounced as kunnooor. The “u” in kunnoor, pronounced like Geoff Boycott saying “gun”…

We stop at the Coonoor-entrance Papers-checking point…

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The weather is lovely… The sky is clear… And the land is green, oh so green…

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Coonoor is some 6000 feet above sea level… Not too high as to be too cold.. Air-conditioned weather…

Driving into the town, we call the caretaker of a service apartment where we are booked to stay… He comes in his scooter and waits for us at a meeting-point… And then he leads us to the holiday home.. A little bungalow, perched on the hill side… We have to climb a set of steps to reach the front garden and landing of the home… Here’s a view from the door…

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There is a riot of flowers… Flowers you wont find in the plains… Birds are singing…

Food is getting ready…

Life is good…

*** To be continued***

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5 Responses to “Summer Holiday – Part 1”

  1. Srinivasa Says:

    Nice!

  2. pgchitra Says:

    Nice Kamesh… Glad you guys had a swell time.. !

  3. ravimouli Says:

    transports me back in time and space – feels like I was there and that too, just y/day – could almost smell the earth and flowers….. thank you ……

  4. ramey Says:

    very nice…truly enjoyable !!!!…unfortunately no birds (!)in your pictures……

  5. Padmini Says:

    There’s nothing to compare with seeing elephants walking feely and majestically. Wonderful

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