We went to chikmagalur the weekend before last.. could not write before this as our comp has been acting up!!!! Highlights of the trip -
1) The drive!!!! It was reallllllllllyyyyyy beautiful... it had been raining and was all green.. we encountered many lakes.. almost one every km .. ok now that was an exaggeration but you get the picture...some of the lakes were overflowing.. the nilgiris are actually blue you know!!!!!!!!!!! :) It was the perfect weather to drive down.. its also the anticipation of going somewhere, the excitement.. the drive is the best part, without doubt!!!!!
2) Pre drive arrangements... oh and pre drive, we bought some chicken salami.. so i made like 10 sandwiches to eat on the way (with different sauces).. after eating 2 i felt like throwing up.. didnt allow my husband to eat either because of the nauseating smell (maybe because i was eating in the car!!) .. well, so much for all the "sandwich excitement".. we donated the rest of it to 2 unsuspecting bell boys in the hotel!!!! rofl
3) Halebeedu / Halebid - its an ancient temple.. built more than 1000 yrs ago!!! And its gorgeous... dark clouds in the background.. and this huge temple complex. The only problem if anything were the crowds.. it was really crowded.. with children (where do so many children come from!!!!) loitering about everywhere.. but then i guess thats the story of life.. you are a part of the crowd as well.. i mean if its a tourist place, then there will be tourists.. we also added to the tourist population!!
3) The hotel : We stayed at Taj Gateway. They have a really nice property.. its green.. lush.. has these cute cottages.. supposedly overlooking the mountains.. ours did not.. but a nice place anyway!!!
4) Weather - it was cold!!!!! Brrrrrrrrrrrrrr.. I am a sunshine person you know.. the first night we reached there.. it was so cold.. i was chilled to the bone.. i crossed my arms and was walking around like that fully covered up .. wore a jacket too....and my husband lolling about in shorts!! ... anyway, my hands were frozen into that position (crossed arms).. my husband literally tried to prise my hands out!!! :). What a picture we made!!
5) Breakfasts.. its been a long time since i had a proper breakfast .. my home breakfast initiative has still not taken off :).. so breakfasts at the hotel used to be -
a) Chitranna / Tomato rice / wada (whatever speciality they served)
b) Fresh juice (musk melon / water melon) etc
c) Dosha / Puris
d) Scrambled eggs, hash brown potato
e) 2 cups of panduranga coffee grown there at chikmagalur (it was delicious)!!!
I loved the coffee.. it was the south indian filter coffee.. my husband says good coffee depends on the maker.. but anyway.. i loved that coffee.. unfortunately we could not go to the shop to buy it.. but the hotel people gave us a surprise.. and gifted us a pack of that coffee.. how sweet!!!
6) Hammocks when its windy and cold.. is not a good idea.. trust me!!! OR trying to read lying in a hammock when its windy and trying to cover yourself up with a shawl.. is extremely difficult.. do not even try!!!
7) TT - I learned how to play TT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Well, its a start.. so what if i lost all the matches (how many did we play.. some 20 -30 matches at least).. to my husband.. i learnt.. And i am excited.. will tell you in the next post why!!! And in 3 games, i scored 10 pts and more :) Yayyyyyy
8) Also tried my hand at pool.. i suck.. to my horror a couple decided to sit and watch us play... .. watching me trying to prod the ball with the stick.. finally we just left.. there were some 6 balls on the table stilll remaining after an hour of play!!!!
9) Massages... ok this is a toughie.. this is the 3rd time i am getting a massage done.. once in bombay, once in thailand (thai massage) and now this one.. nothing, believe me nothing can ever prepare you for the shock and the wave of embarrassment you feel flooding right from your toe to head.. when masseuse tells you to remove everything and lie down... I REALLY MEAN EVERYTHING!!!!!! But about 10 mins into the massage, you just give to the sheer pleasure of the massage.. and forget about everything else!!!! It took me about 4-5 showers to get the oil out.. but thats another story!!!
10) Belur - an utterly beautiful ancient temple.. built in 1117 AD. Its huge.. its extraordinary... there are these ancient carvings.. and its breathtaking!! Only thing that spoils everything - people.. they lean on these statues when chatting.. they make their kids sit.. SIT.. on the ancients carvings to take pictures!!! Ignorant illiterate people!!!! They should be made to wash the entire temple or something!!!!
11) Shravanabelagola : its the biggest monolithic statue.. and they make you put in a lot of effort to see it :) ... there are 650 steps!!! 650!!!!!!!!!!!!! I tried to convince my husband.. told him.. yeh hamare bas ki baat nahi hai.. but he wanted to go.. in the spirits of things.. so up we went.. Gaaaawwwwwwwwwwdddddddd!!! Its tough.. we reached the top and spent about 5 mins rsting.. and feeling proud that we had made.. when .. horrors of horrors.. we went up to find more steps.. and then more!!!! But let me say this.. it was worth it!!! The statue is really beautiful!!!! And the view from top of the place.. fabulous!!! My legs were like jelly though.. and i felt i am about to topple as i was coming down!!!
A great trip.. i loved every bit of it...we have already planned for the next 2 trips - Kabini in Dec and Pondicherry in Jan... yay!!!!!!!! :)