It was a sudden plan to Varkala Beach in Kerala… I didn’t do much research about the place but i brought the point of my friend Laxman who is a planned person and he does his homework before doing something… So, i’m a smart worker & blindly follow my friend and he has never gone wrong…
Though we planned at the last moment it was very wavering because of Manoj… But when Laxman decides something he will push people and will make it happen somehow & he convinced Manoj to make it… Then I got a call from Sathish asking if we must make it for sure… I said i’m going to go for it because I hate being wavering & he followed me… Only while boarding the train we came to know that he met with an accident and had scratches all over his body…
Then again there was a setback because the Laxman’s service manager said he can’t deliver the car by evening… So, we decided to go by train… When we went to buy the ticket we were shocked to know that the ticket costs just Rs.110/- per person and we had saved a lot on Petrol, Car Lag etc ;)… But the travel time was double than driving distance because train travelled on a U direction…
Train started 30 minutes behind schedule Â & I crashed by 11.30 PM & got up by 8 AM by hearing sweet malayalam speech by cute looking Mallu girls… Train reached Varkala one hour behind schedule & we reached the place by 9 AM…
Then we travelled in an auto-rickshaw & reached out Hotel Hill View… One reaching the spot I’ve no words to tell about the place… It is an hill with Arabian Sea below & what a marvel to ones eyes… We got a Sea facing room & after refreshing we all went to take a Dip on the sea and we had our Lunch…
Again we reached our hotel took a shower & now am blogging… After this we are going for shopping on the sea view shops and Â we got an invite from a friend for late night party… Tomorrow will go for an ayurvedic massage & by evening am traveling back to Chennai…
Since there is Wi-Fi in the hotel & because of BlackBerry my work didn’t get affected… So, it is a double delight & enjoyed a lot till now…
Life runs so fast that when we turn back we can believe that itz been so long. Ten years back exactly on same day we went to Ooty trip along with college buddies. Yes we were in our final year and we know if not then it will never happen together. And we were right after that we were unable to make it as a team till date. Some one or other will miss because so some other priority.
Coming back it all stands ever green in front of my eyes the planning we did. Initially we thought of going as a class trip. But we had some problem;Â
- As usual there was a set of folks who said they cant spend money on tours.
- Then college said we have to take some faculty along with us if we had to take girls.
We were so mean those days that we scraped the idea of taking girls as we were not ready to pay for a faculty. Also we thought we can go along with core group of friends so that we can have ball of a time.
Then it was time for planning we collected all the tourist spots from TTDC and thru other sources. Then collected college bonafide certificate from college as it gave us concession in train tickets, dorm rooms in youth hostel & concession in theme park.Â
Then came the D-Day we packed our bags on 05/09/1999 where in we all planned to take Electric train and meet assemble at Mambalam station. So fun started from there where in confusion started from there;Â
- Venket boards a train and joins Balaji from Palavanthangal.
- Both of them will join Karthik from St.Thomas Mount station.
- All three will join me from Guindy Station.
- We all join other folks other than Saravanan in Mambalam station.
- Karthik has a habit to sleep when he stands. So we were unable to pull him down at Mambalam station because of crowd. So, Balaji caught the train and said he will pull him down at park station and he did that promptly.
- Then we all joined at park station and crossed the road and boarded train to Mettupalayam. And it was fun from then on.
Joy in Train: Venket took control by himself and claimed himself as the captain of the trip. Who cares we didnâ€™t give him a damn and we were in our own world. So first step of control Venkat took was to lock all our bags and he was good at that and we were relieved that someone took care of our belongings.. Then he took all the snacks which we brought (we planned to have snacks for whole 5 day). But when Venkat slept we finished off all the snacks we brought within minutes.
Then we were shouting, talking, playing cards and didnâ€™t sleep the whole night. We were pulling down each others socks.Â
Then finally we reached Metupalayam by 7 AM and we ran to board Ooty heritage train. It was a 4 hour right and we enjoyed first 2 hours by running behind the train. Taking snaps on the falls that pours en route. Then we got bored. Then we reached Ooty and we were sitting in a park before we found the youth hostel.
We refreshed our self and it was already 2 PM and we proceeded to Lake that day and we returned back as we were tired as we didnâ€™t sleep that day. Then we returned to Hostel and slept.
As we stayed there for 5 days we need 5 parts to cover the entire episode as each day was an epic by itself.
It is always fun to be tour with friendsâ€¦ My best outing was trip to ooty with my college mates during 1999 when I was in my final year in collegeâ€¦ Next best things for someone who is search of peace, solutions for problems and soul searching is by visiting templesâ€¦
Iâ€™m great believer in Lord Venkatachapathi in Tirumala, Tirupathi. Iâ€™ve been visiting this temple for 9 years. Normally I leave Chennai early in the morning return the same day by night.
But this time I took my friends getting assurance from one of by MBA mates and things got messed up. We reached Tirumala on Sunday morning and we thought my friends would have made arrangement by 9 o clock in the morning. But he forgot to instruct his subordinates and we got a ticket for darshan only on Monday morning by 5.30 AM.
So we had ball of a time on Sunday. It was like tour de spirituality. So we eventually drove all spots in the hill and stayed in a Guest house. Pulling each other and we did some shopping as we didnâ€™t bring any cloths.
Then as usual it was a challenge coordinating and making folks get ready on time and to my surprise we were on time and had good darshan and I was relieved as I missed 2 opportunities to visit Lerd Venky on two occasions.
These are the folks who made up for trip;
Â Left to Right : Anand, Muthi, Vicky, Subbu, Balaji, Sathish…
This is Sudhir who took previous snap…
This is how we went to temple with dothi and angavastaram;
Last week we had been to Kodaikanal for a dayâ€™s tripâ€¦ Thanks to Major Karthik, Bala Subramaniyam, Boopathi & Sathick for sponsoring the tripâ€¦ Ok itz wrong to tell it as sponsor as it is their Birthday treatâ€¦ Since their birthdays fell within a month they thought they can join hands and give a memorable treatâ€¦ Then boopathi took over and really rocked with his Admistration skills and finished the trip with less than 30% of the projected expenseâ€¦
Asusual it got delayed because of meâ€¦ I got up late and it took time to get ready, we were beyond schedule by 30 minâ€¦ So all folks assembled in my house and this is the team excluding Senthil who joined us from Vadipattiâ€¦
Left to Right: Bala Subramaniyam, Major Karthik, Yours Truly, Boopathi, Sathick
Then we picked up Senthil from Vadipatti and then we stopped at Vathalagundu to have our breakfastâ€¦
Folks got down near the hotel, Hotelâ€™s Entrance & Folks fightingâ€¦ I just dank a cup of milk as I know eating too much will result in vomitingâ€¦ But Sathick freaked with Vada, Dosa, Idly & Coffee and as expected he started vomitingâ€¦ I was surprised to know that this was sathickâ€™s first trip to a hill stationâ€¦
Then we straight away went for site seeingâ€¦ First was pine forest
We at carrot & Ice-Cream hereâ€¦
Then we went to Guna caves, suicide points and many other places enroute before returning for lunch to Hotel Hilltopâ€¦ I over ate here and had a nice napâ€¦ We cancelled our plan to goto Liril falls and Dolphin nose because there was not much water in the fallsâ€¦
These are some of the snaps we took on that dayâ€¦
Blogging about my Munnar trip is a long pending task… It all started with a call from Vijay Krishna asking me to join them for a trip to Punnagai Mannan falls (falls was named after Kamal Hasan’s movie Punnagai Mannan) near Coimbatore… I told them that I can join them only on Sunday as Saturday is a working day for me… Then I started my ay is office as usual and I got a call from Vijay telling plans got changed to Munnar… I was little upset because I was not mentally prepared for some other place and I was eager to visit a place which I just watched in a movie…
I packed my bags to Munnar by 3:30 PM and went to Bus Stand to board Munnar Bus… On reaching the bus terminus I was told direct bus to Munnar is scheduled only in the mornings and I was asked to goto Theni and then catch a bus to Munnar from there… Then I boarded a bus to theni & within 30 min drive from Madurai tyre got burst… Bus was jam packed and many people started boarding other buses… But I stayed in the bus and thought I can see what happens… Then suddenly driver said there is a spare tyre(stepney) and he changed the type and dropped in Theni within 2 hours… I reached Theni around 8 o clock and I was told next bus to Munnar is at 10 o clock…
I though I can have my dinner in a local hotel to get a feel of the place and in the hotel I engaged a conversation with two boys who were sharing my table… They became good friends and till now we keep calling each other :)… They told me about unexplored places in Theni and about local culture, they were very curious to know if I know any tamil actors and their houses… For them Chennai looks like heaven and it seems they have never been there… I’m really excited by the way they helped me…
Then I boarded the Munnar bus and I asked the conductor about journey time to munnar… People found from my lingo that I’m from Chennai… One particular gentleman started telling names of each and every place enroute to Munnar… I’ve never had such a journey; it was a great experience…
I was told there will be lot of elephant crossing in the nights and if any elephant sleeps/stands in the road vehicles has to shut the head light n engine and wait till the animal moves… Unfortunately that didn’t happen in our journey and I missed that experience… But on the way we saw an elephant and it roared, but I didn’t have time to pick my camera and take a snap…
Then I slept for sometime and all of a sudden bus stopped because of traffic jam…I went out for a leak and assumed traffic jam was because of elephants crossing… Then I walked further to see if there is any elephant…
One enquiring the status from a cab driver I came to know traffic jam was because of some quarrel between a tourist van and a truck driver… It took 30 min for the quarrel to get over and for traffic to get cleared… Then atlast I reached munnar by 2 o clock in the morning… It was shivering cold in the night…
Straight away went to the hotel and the doors were locked… I was preying for folks to pick the call… They didn’t pick my call making me scared and for a moment I thought I must sleep in the streets shivering the whole night… Then got a call from Vasanth and he opened the doors… Vasanth, Vijay & Sathish came from Coimbatore… All of us were tired because of the travel and we all crashed to immediately….
Then next day we all started for site seeing by 8.30 in the morning…
To be continued………
Part 2 coming soon……