Sunday, October 8, 2017

Andharban - The dark forest

Beyond the hot sultry summer, when rain start to pour down the subdued droplets reminscing the sweet smell of the mud into our subconcious mind , the very Monsoon becomes a paradise for trekkers in and around Mumbai. One of such a paradise trek route is the Andharban trek (Andhar meaning dark  and ban meaning forest ) . While it cannot be categorized as one the most difficult it certainly can be rated  as one of the most fascinating treks in the shahaydris.

The journey has all ingredients of a dream trek with breathtaking views , numerous waterfalls, flowing streams to cross , waterpools , reservoirs, plateau, green meadows and a dense forest.
We started from Mumbai at midnight reaching our base early morning . Post freshening and a sumptous breakfast we moved to the start point of the trek. We were a group of close to 75 people from sky adventures. The entry point itself was a sight to behold  as One had to cross an overfilled reservoir ensuring that the shoes are wet and conveying that the next 14 kms will be an integral part of the memory. As we went higher the fog engulfed us subsequently clearing with magnificent views of waterfalls and valleys. The further trail led to walking in stream of waters and finally jumping in a natural pool  

The pools , streams and waterfalls soon led into a dense jungle . Deep enough for light view but with sunlight blocked. The jungle led to a green meadow plateau and subsequently a very steep downroad with only large stones to rest our foot one. This was the most difficult and longest part of the trek. The rains had started by then and by the time we reached the foothills we could see a stream in sight. With No water and very less stamina we all just sat in the stream giving ourselves a new breath of life. Further down just before the base there was a huge reservoir . At the base we changed our clothes and were soon filling our hungry stomachs with an aching appetite. The journey back to Mumbai was filled with just the sweet memories of the adventure .

Saturday, January 3, 2015

The Fault in Our Stars

"But it is in the nature of stars to Cross, and never was Shakespeare more wrong than when he has Cassius Note ' the fault dear Brutus , is not in our stars but in ourselves' ".

"The Fault in our Stars "  is probably one of the finest motivating book (and movie) of our times, taking  the story of Augustus Waters and Hazel Grace into a fascinating world of  love and triumph. The dialogues catching the imagination of the readers, transcending into a loop reminiscing through our mind, over and over again. It has been a couple of months since i saw the movie and then read the book, and today when the article on the first page of 'Times of India' read " Two thirds of the Cancer are caused due to bad luck " i could not resist but wonder the truth about the fault in our stars.

To All my friends (and anyone reading the blog ) if you have not read the book , make instant haste to a near by bookshop and purchase it,  for Augustus Waters and Hazel Grace have shown us through their story, how to live our life in our small Infinities.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

In Moments of Solitude

Someday, Sometime , Somewhere,
Away from the Stress and Chaos ;
Every person Yearns,
For Moments of Solitude !!

Growing old has it's moments of truth which slowly transends as figments of wisdom.
The Wisdom allowing us to demarcate the thin lines of Solitude and Isolation, and the pleasure one starts deriving from the former.  The wavering thoughts of expectation subliming into carefree abandon, a state of nothingness but Self.
Freedom of reminiscing the past years, reflecting the most beautiful memories and passion of our Lives, a new lease of stressfree instances weaving together " In Moments of Solitude".

Wednesday, February 5, 2014


Passion is the Source of our most beautiful, inherited memories and desire. A passionate person has an inherent thrust of happines endorsed, in the things he loves to do, doing it solely not for reason but for the voice of his heart. 

It is difficult to reason out why someone would spend his entire saving in purchasing a camera and wander in absolute isolation to capture some beautiful moments of life rather then socialising with friends over beer. And when someone looks for a answer , he is told 'there are passions which are more intoxicating than alcohol !!' Ahhhh .... and everyone thinks ... What a fool to resort to this kind of answer ?

None the less, I have had a fair share of being foolish and while in most cases, it fades away with time, some  remain to intoxicate me for life. To be true to myself, When i  look back,  there is not a single trace of doubt, that the most beautiful moments and memories of my life have been enveloped during these passionate moments.

Passion ( in all contradictions) is derived from the Latin verb patī meaning to suffer, making me belive that it has been derived by some passionate lover who Suffered from a heartbreak.
As far as I am concerened, I still recall it as my most intimate and desirable moments and will continue to relish so, everytime I look back at them.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Thy name is Bond

Mussorie is and will be known as the queen of Hills , but one thing it can proudly boast of, is that a person called Ruskin Bond made this beautiful hill station his home and wrote some beautiful heart touching stories here.

"The night train at Deoli" " The room on the Roof" " Vagarants of the Valley" and "hundreds of other Stories" have touched millions of hearts like nothing ever written on paper. Bond's genius can be compared with the greatest authors in the story "The Eyes have it"; the simplicity and the vividity with which he puts forward the characters in this story is amazing.

He may not capture the imagination like Asimov and Hawkins, nor can he be thrilling as Jeffrey archer or Sidney shelon but for sure he touches the Chord of life like no one else does.

I studied in Mussorie for 10 years and Ruskin Bond had been the chief guest in our school on a couple of occassions. He was as simple as his stories and we were too young to realise the greatness of this person....

Perhaps, thats how greatness reveals itself.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Dreams come true !!!

As a small kid , i dreamt of having many things when i grow up. As i started growing up my Priorities changed but these three things always remained in my mind.

1. Owning a Bike
2. Having a Good Camera
3. A good Stereo ( which has a very powerful sound)

( I must remind that a bike , an SLR & a big stereo was uncommon and an envious possession in those days)

My first job was in Ahmednagar and the Factory was far from the Company hostel. Thus came my first bike " Pulsar 150 cc". During the last eight years, my Pulsar has been a part of many unforgettable journies. The most important one was travelling 400 Miles without a backup with my brother Prashant to the Ajanta Ellora caves, Daulatabad fort, biwi ka makbara, Shani Mandir.

My friend Venkatesh ( Venky ) harboured an ambition to be a director. After shooting for a couple of documentries in Delhi, he came to the city of dreams to try his luck in bollywood. One day, while sitting over a cup of morning tea, he told me that he would get all his heroine's photoshoot done by me. I spent my entire saving in purchasing a Nikon F80 that very evening. The very next day, i also enrolled myself to do a certificate course in Photography at the Photographic Society of India.
Venky went back to Delhi after three months, but i still beleive he will live up to his words :-)

My friend Vikas, wanted to buy a good mobile phone and as bachelors, who do nothing on Sundays i went along with him to give credibility to his decision. After all he wanted to buy an expensive one. As luck would have it, i came across this Yamaha Amplifier with a 5.1 Speakers + woofer and to add to my temtation, the shop was giving a 6 month interest free installment to purchase it. More than anything , i would not have bought it if Vikas would not have supported the credibility of my decision.

I drove my bike a lot and enjoyed every moment riding it ; i clicked some very beautiful pictures with my camera and enjoyed every wave of music when i increased the volumes of my home theatre to vibrating walls. But then, with years they lost significance, they are still with me but the passion of ownership, which i had dreamt as a child is lost.

Monday, November 23, 2009

A trip to Batu Caves !!

"Elongated forms of various minerals deposited from solution by slowly dripping water. A stalactite hangs from the ceiling . The dominant mineral in such deposits is calcite (calcium carbonate), and the largest displays are formed in caves of limestone and dolomite. eg Batu caves in Malaysia"

I sat there on the first bench listening to my Geography teacher & imagining , how a stalactite would look in real. That was 17 years back.

Last week , work brought me to Kuala Lumpur and I got the opportunity to see the stalactites in real. The Batu caves can be seen from far distant. There is a magnificent 140 ft tall, Golden statue of Lord Murugan at the base of the cave. That is sure enough to captivate you. If it doesn't, all you need to do is walk 340 steps to enter one of the most amzing cave in the world. The enterance to the cave and the view inside the cave are full of stalactites, amazing stalactites, a bit different from your books and mysterious enough to have your cameras clicking.

For all those religious people, there are few temples of hindu Gods inside. There is one function during the year where close to fifty thousand people Welcome Thaipusam Chariot and tourists from across the world come to watch.

It was a rare treat . A worth visit to all who like to travel and, yes if you are in Malaysia or flying over it, the Twin Towers are amazing at night .

HAppy Travelling !!!