Dec 29, 2008

Kerala again, a year later!

Thanks to the Hydventura team at Hyderabad, i signed up for a trip to Wayanad during the Christmas long weekend. And it so happened that i was in Mumbai the day before this started and hence went straight to Kozhikode the night before. Staying on the beach at Kozhikode that Christmas eve and savouring the sights/smells of the beach was a bonus! Watching the waves come and go, I felt an inkling of what the first half of January would hold for me!

The next day I enjoyed a 6k run along the beach and after a Kerala style breakfast, left for the hills in a red colored KSRTC bus. On the way i stopped at the Pookode Lake - the water was clear and fresh and the boating serene. By the evening I reached the rendezvous point where the rest of the team led by the charismatic Srikanth Spiky Perinkulam landed.

The next morning we geared up to climb Chembra, the tallest peak in Kerala. The climb showed me just how underdeveloped my quads and hamstrings were! We spent the next day at Edakkal caves, yet another place that highlights the disaster that Indian Tourism is. There was a very scary climb to the top there, one that triggered a mini-vertigo at each turn. Felt relieved after I hit terra firma. That day we also hit the Soochipara Falls where the water was cold but refreshing. The night ended with a late camp fire.

The last day of the trip was a straight drive back to Bangalore via Ganpathivattom (Sulthan Bathery), Bandipur Wild Life Sanctuary and Mysore. We sighted a wild elephant on the way and had exceptionally delicious tender coconut water at a village named Khagradondi. I also sighted two Colnago bicycles mounted on an SUV, that was part of the Tour of Nilgiris contingent (still agonising on my bike decision :-) Finally after lunch at Kamats, we stopped at the Ranganathittu Bird Santcuary (a familiar place) on the way. At Bangalore Sharmas Travel provided a comfortable Volvo bus that took us to Hyderabad on time the next day.

See Spiky's blog for more on the trip.

Dec 16, 2008

Post Mumbai Thoughts

Here are some thoughts post Mumbai:
  • Un-Partition of India?
  • Re-Partition of Pakistan?
  • The idea of Pakistan and its unwinding
  • Anti-feudalistic undercurrents in Pakistan donning mask of religion
  • The Infinite Patience of India
  • 'The Thing' - source in Wahabbi fundamentalism, 
  • The New Great Game - Afghanishtan & FATA
Each bullet above could be a whole post in itself, but just letting these thoughts linger