Sunday, December 30, 2012

a short drive to narayanakere

the last weekend of 2012... the weather, pleasant with clouds and a slight drizzle. drove towards chikkatirupati to visit the ranganatha temple, 2 kms shy of chikkatirupati and on your right... on the way back, GL found a narrow tarred road with a sign-board announcing 'narayankere'... hoping to see a kere(a lake), drove a few kms only to reach a village by that name... one that doesn't have a lake but plenty-a turkeys strutting around, bitter-gourd and ridge-gourd fields and eucalyptus plantations... and a lot of flowering plants around.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

GL's wishlist

.. for the brand new year of two-o-thirteen

1. visit twelve new places.. different places in the same city counts
DONE and even exceeded the number:
1. esplanade, marina bay sands (singapore)
2. jurong bird park and singapore zoo with night safari
3. botanic garden and hawpar villa, singapore
4. boardwalk and malls of singapore
5. buddha tooth relic and chinatown(singapore)
6. gardens by the bay( singapore )
7. resorts world aquarium, universal studios (singapore)
8. boston and USS ship trip and museum(boston)
9. nashua(new england, USA)
10. niagara falls, niagara city USA
11. redwood shores and belmont, california USA
12. bay area, california USA

2. produce twelve amazingly good photographs...

3. read twelve new authors... non-fiction
half done:
1. the man without a face ( the unlikely rise of vladimir putin)
2. no easy day(the first hand account of the mission that killed OSL)
3. still counting the dead ( Survivors of Sri Lanka's Hidden War)
4. chicken soup for the soul
5. 101 amazing adventures
6. complete guide to women's health

4. watch twelve off-beat/documentary movies, or go to twelve plays or art exhibits
1. Laser and water show, Bayfront, Singapore
2. Concerts at Esplanade and Bayfront, Singapore
3. Crane Dance, Resorts Islands Sentosa, Singapore
4. Lake Hollywood spectacular Show of pyrotechnics, Singapore
5. Hollywood Dream Parade and Donkey show, Universal Studios, Singapore
6. Songs of the sea, Resorts Islands Sentosa, Singapore
7. Water World, Sesame street and other street performances, Uni Studio, Singapore
8. Chinese New Year performances at Buddha Tooth Relic, Chinatown, Singapore
9. Street performances at Bay Area, California, USA
10. USS ship presentation and museum slides, Boston, USA
11. aquarium and heritage presentations, Resorts Islands Sentosa, Singapore.
12. 4D movie at BayArea, California, USA

5. catch-up with twelve forgotten friends/relatives and take them out.. follow-up later and keep in touch for the rest of the year

6. make and sell twelve paintings

7. experience twelve new things well matter how small or big
1. Roller Coaster rides(at Universal Studios in Singapore)
2. -2 degree celsius temperature ( at Niagara Falls)
3. jet lag ( during my trip to USA)
4. caltrain, the double decker train at California
5. double-decked flight ( during my trip to USA)
6. LRT at singapore
7. monorail at Frankfurt airport
8. 4D movie at Bay Area, California
9. sea-lions in natural habitat at Bay Area, California
10. exchanging currencies
11. watched a live baseball match, at Redmont, California
12. tram rides in niagara state park

8. drive twelve different vehicles.. being a passenger does not count

9. buy twelve gifts for my parents through the year
1. jan 2nd: bought dad some movie dvds. 
2. bought dad a mobile phone

3. bought mum and dad stuff from USA

10. eat/drink twelve unusual dishes/drinks never eaten/drunk before
1. kaya ( a coconut jam)
2. icecream sandwich
3. donuts and bagels
4. raspberries and blackberries
5. yogurt with fruit
6. french crepes
7. dragonfruit
8. pretzels

11. build twelve good habits that are sustainable for a long time - wake-up early, brush at night, eat  breakfast, read.. et al.

12. take twelve agreeable pictures of myself, one each month

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

late one evening..

... two crows sit chatting on the very top of an old leafless tree.. it's past their bedtime..

she: so it's the end of the world, huh?
he: not our world, sweetheart.. lets just stay up all night and caw...
everbody else in the neighbourhood: someone please shut these crows up!

caw: speak in crow-tongue

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

the night watchman

my watchman takes it easy
for he has a loving dog
quite unaware of the fact
that it sleeps like a log

Thursday, November 01, 2012

another temple on a hill

bettadasanpura is a small settlement close to electronic city, bangalore... and about 10 mins drive from GL's place... on the outskirts of the settlement is this hillock with an old temple perched on top, believed to be the oldest in bangalore.

the hill has a gradual incline that allows you to drive right to the stairs of the two temples within it's stone-walled compound.

Monday, October 29, 2012


a few weeks ago... commercial street in bangalore was closed to vehicular traffic.. and the entire street was decked up with beautiful rangoli... if it wasn't for the hot sun beating down upon you, one could keep walking up and down the street all day long, marvelling at the colours and geometry.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

fields of marigolds

'm' is for endless fields of marigolds, on the outskirts of bangalore

Friday, September 14, 2012

an ice-cap

i is for an ice-capped tomato... 
this is what happens when you forget a tomato in the freezer for long...

for ABCWednesday

Monday, August 20, 2012

rayakottai - a day trip

rayakottai, tipu sultan's lesser known fort and a protected monument with the ASI, is nestled atop a hillock in a quiet little town of the same name... about 70kms from electronic city.

a 30-45 minute hike up the hillock and you come across a Y-section as the trail diverges into two... taking the left one leads you to a deserted and picturesque cave temple...taking the right leads you up and around a huge rock to the ruins of an erstwhile fort... frequented by locals, the entire trail is roughly laid out. the fort has a neat classic entry way.. one you can even climb over.. there are delightful nooks and corners of the fort you get to explore as you walk further and further along the fort wall. 

the bulk of the climbing ends at the cave temple.. then on, the trail to the fort is much easier and fun... and a strong breeze lends an eerie air to the shrubs around.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

the beautiful Parshwa Sushil Dham

shri parshwa sushil dham is about 18kms from electronic city.. and has this amazingly beautiful jain temple made in marble... and looks like what could be an exotic carving in white butter... intricate and awe-inspiring! the spacious campus has beautiful compound walls, and houses a bhojanalay(the temple's  food place)  and a play area for children.

easily accessible by road... and as peaceful as it is beautiful.

Chikkatirupati - a day trip

Chikka Tirupati is about 22kms from the Hope Farm circle.. the sign at this circle leads you right to this beautiful temple with a bright and colourful gopuram... the roads are narrow but well-laid.. and there's nothing much to do after a leisurely visit to the temple. you could be back home for lunch!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

such a beautiful drive...

on the way to Avani... the day was pleasantly sunny.. the clouds were beautiful and fluffy.. the roads devoid of heavy traffic.. and heaven smiled down on GL and her friends.

Sunday, May 06, 2012

to risk...

To laugh is to risk appearing the fool;
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental;
To reach out for another is to risk involvement;
To expose feelings is to risk exposing true self;
To place your ideas, your dreams before the crowd is to risk their loss;
To love is to risk not being loved in return;
To live is to risk dying;
To hope is to risk despair;
To try is to risk failure;
But risk must be taken, because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing;
The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing and is nothing;
He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love and live;
Chained by his certitudes, he is a slave and has forfeited freedom’
Only a person who risks is free.

-William Arthur Ward


a handful of very noisy hippos at the bannerghatta national park, bangalore, make for great fun pics. a bugsbunny-look-alike holds a conversation across a wall

some gossip from the other end:

some rolling-in-the-water without much care for the rest of the world...

another pet another goodbye

tiny shells came with the potted plants GL bought a few months ago... each week they grew and grew and grew and turned into mammoth snails that nibbled on the leaves... they also ate biscuits and other foodstuff GL left for them. the plants though, were losing leaves more rapidly than they could spring new ones.

hence GL gathered them up and left them at the pond nearby, so they could eat to their hearts' content and build  themselves a new family home .... one however escaped the bundling-away, only to be found later and get bundled away too.

visiting tinnu

tinnu, GL's red-eared slider, had to be sent to the nearby national park where there were more of his kind. tinnu's a social animal and it was time he found himself a girl friend and a soul-mate.... so one fine day, GL, her parents, her brother and a few relatives drove him to the park in a brand new car.. and gave him a royal farewell that he truly deserves... though away, the little critter continues to hold our hearts in his tiny clawing paws and his beautiful gold-green eyes...

tinnu, relaxing by GL, on the day he was to fly the nest:

tinnu, 3 weeks later, at his new pad with his buddies ( look for the red arrow mark to see where tinnu is .. right in the middle ):

he looked quite at home and relaxed and basking... though he had hurt his nose a developed a clot around it.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

shravana belagola - a day trip

shravan belagola - about 150 kms from bangalore... and a pleasant drive with good roads.

at shravan belagola, there are two hills, chandragiri and vindhyagiri.. with jain temples on top of each... on vindhyagiri is a mammoth statue of Gommateshwara.. it's a long climb up the hillock to reach the temple. a very popular place of visit, well-maintained and very peaceful.

Monday, January 02, 2012

avani - a day trip

What began as driving lessons to a friend at Whitefield, Bangalore, turned out to be a (half-)day trip to this relatively not-so-well-known place called Avani(earth) in Mulbagilu taluk. This village is steeped in mythology, and is considered an important spiritual destination.

From Whitefield, NH4 towards Chennai will take you to Kolar. 30 odd kms ahead, is a clearly marked right turn to go to Avani. About 6km from here is the small village of Avani, dominated by temples and a mosque. All roads lead to the temple. There is a small parking lot at the base of the hill. This is also where the Sharadamba temple is, alongwith a "matha/mutt" attached to it. Right beside the temple is the mosque and beside the mosque are steps leading to Valmiki Ashram, where Sitadevi lived during her exile and gave birth to her twins, Luv and Kush. After a flight of well-laid steps is a rock-face with steps cut into it. Some more climb and you arrive at the Ashram, with two temples - a Sitadevi temple with an extremely tiny inner chamber and a Shiva temple. Behind these two temples, there is one more temple. From here, the view of the town and its surroundings is beautiful!

happy new year!