Monday, May 14, 2012

Going Places- Part 3


These are places which I have been to in the recent years, at a time when I actually remember things and not rely on wikitravel for writing the forgotten info. Take a look and now with the digital age adventing, some nice pictures as well deserve your attention.

The Deccan Odyssey
I have been to Maharashtra a few times after my aunt got married and moved to Aurangabad. The sole thing I knew about Aurangabad was that it housed the world famous Ajanta Caves. My knowledge ended here before I had visited the place. I haven’t been to the Taj Mahal yet but I have been to the lesser known duplicate Taj Mahal- Bibi-ka-Maqbara. Nirala Bazar, being close to where my aunt lives, is a market place which I have been to every single time that I have been in Aurangabad. Ajanta Caves are located at a little distance from Aurangabad (a little over 100 kms to be precise) and visiting the place was a great feeling. No, not for seeing the cave paintings, but for being at a historic site that I could now proclaim I had visited!

In October 2005, we had taken a road trip of many places across Maharashtra, similar to our Karnataka trip three years ago. Our trip had started from Aurangabad with the first halt at Shirdi. We halted for the night at Triambakeshwar, near Nashik and witnessed the overcrowded Sangam. Subsequent locations on our itinerary included Matheran (As my luck would have it, the toy train was closed due to landslide. I did walk on the track from the car point to Matheran and I stood stubborn at the baseless fact that it snowed here in the winters), Alibag (I was sure I saw the cottages where Jassi stayed in her visit to Alibag in the serial), Murud (the motorboat ride on the sea to visit the Fort- wow!) and of course, my dream ride on the Mumbai-Pune expressway at 140 kmph! One of my visits to Aurangabad (I can’t recall when) took me to Shani Signapore- the place which my grandmother had described as one with no doors and windows in any house.

My most recent trip to the state was to Pune in June 2010. My admission at Symbiosis Institute of Design was what had got me to the place. Although I cleared all the tests, I never took the admission offer and instead moved to Delhi. During my brief stay at the place, what I was awestruck with was probably the unique architecture of each building. I did visit the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) but due to unavailability of an appointment, could only make it till the gates of my dream institute!

Another trip to Maharashtra is surely on my cards. The one when Mayanagri Mumbai comes calling…!


The City Beautiful
I visited Chandigarh when I was in Class 12 in November 2009. It was my first road trip from Delhi. The two-day trip that included visiting most of the places at the most beautifully planned city that I have ever seen remains glued to my memory. The roads at right angles with maps at all road crossings plus the green cover, it was something worth seeing to believe in one of the fastest growing metro-cities of the country. Our visit started from the Rock Garden and then taking an open top HoHo bus ride to Sukhna Lake, boating there and then visiting the Chandigarh Carnival before moving to the city centre. Deja-Vu took over me when I saw the concrete floored and colourful-fountain covered main shopping plaza. Was such a clean place actually part of India? It was difficult to believe. Day 2 of our trip included visiting the nearby Yadavendra Gardens- Seven floors of beautiful garden space. Wow! I had loved it. Fighting the urge to drive to Shimla, which is not very far off from here, must have been difficult for my uncle. Another trip to this beautiful place isn’t something I would like to miss any time soon.

When adventure beckons
Rishikesh, yeah, my most unforgettable trip till date. The trip about which I have written so many times over the past year. Whether it is the unexpected and sudden planning or the life-threatening rafting or literally drowning in the Ganga, this 3-day trip (the first one for me without my family) can never possibly be erased from my memories. I read an article recently in The Times of India Crest Edition and it said ‘Rafting in Rishikesh was for novices. Zanskar was for more thrill lovers’. Well, I am sure that a trip to Leh isn’t going to remain a dream for long now.

Jai Mata Di
Right from the time I had joined college, I used to hear some friend or the other talking about his/her trip to Vaishnodevi. All I knew about the place was from a mythology serial that my sister used to watch a few years ago where the goddess in the form of a little girl, climbs up a mountain while being chased by a demon and then inside a cave, kills him. I also remembered seeing a song video at the end of Rangoli on Doordarshan when I was a kid- that of a lady holding her son and climbing the hills to reach the temple in the caves while chanting Jai Mata Di. So when I got this chance to visit the shrine, I was overwhelmed. More than seeing the Goddess inside a cave, I was interested in two other things- covering the whole 12 km distance and back by foot and crawling inside a cave to reach the shrine. The first wish was accomplished successfully, but the second one left me disappointed as the original cave had been closed for the general public years ago. Next is the tale of me getting lost there in the middle of the night. That’s a story you ought to read (check the third paragraph at the link) and well, (don’t) laugh!

Another trip to Vaishnodevi? Yeah. By helicopter and when it is snowing. ;)

So that brings an end to my ‘travel sperm’ entries. There have been a lot more places that I have been to including Ooty when I was just a year old and remember nothing of. Probably these anecdotes would find a place here sometime later. Right now, I think I have bored you enough by ‘Going Places’ and hopefully, the stock of watermelons and juices and ice-creams haven’t ended in your fridge. The Delhi heat is taking a toll over me and I am wondering Where next?

Missed the previous entries? Check them out here: Travel Sperm, Part 1, Part 2.

Do tell me how your experience has been while reading these entries of mine and beating the summer heat. Have an experience to any of these places to share? I am all ears.
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2 comments :

  1. Interesting n precise entries, thnk 2 ur organized memories... :P :P Visiting places z sumthng v al luv, though only few cn plan out n njoy... My maternal side always hd dat excitement 2 keep on visiting places n datz y d whole family always used 2 muv 2gether 2 sum new place evry year... Starting 4m Hyderabad in 1997, I hv njoyed al directions of d country xcpt d mysterious North-East n hv hd 8 trips 2 d 4 Metros, twice each place wid 4 of d trips wid frndz (or widout parents...). D last 1 ws jst 55 days ago 2 jamshedpur wid few frndz wid d idea jst striking 8hrs b4 v boarded train... :) :)

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