Friday, October 31, 2008

Kodachadri Camping

It was almost 2-3 months now since i went out of home for a trek. I was more of confined to my home most of the weekends and i was more of desperate for a trek. Camping on top of Kodachadri was in my mind for almost 2 years now. Since i had already visited Kodachadri once some how i was not able to convince my team members to revisit and camp on top of the peak. However this time i told loki and gilli that i wanna camp on top and i am going would you guys be interested to join? At the end unlike many of my earlier treks very few guys nominated themselves. 

It was 7 member team 3 of them new to the team. Loki (Lu lu), Vikram (Accent - Cheeta), Ashwini (Gossip rani), Sumanth (Su su), Shweta, Naveen (Zip Tegirooooo) and myself Poorna.

Since it was only 7 of us, we could fit ourselves in a Tata Quallis, however as its been the case with our earlier treks our  driver was horrible he never went above 60-70kms/hr speed, it was frustrating to see him drive so badly with such good roads and also he had 3 breaks in between for a nap. We had left Bangalore at around 10.30, by the time we reached Kodachadri it was around 10 in the morning.

We started to trek straight away, last time we had taken the path of Hitlumane falls route however this time loki and myself we decided that since its lot more difficult and also since it had rained very heavily the previous day it would be useful to take the easier path in order to avoid the furry of leeches.

Since all were ready for the game it didn't take us much time to reach the peak and it was like around 3 hours with in which we could climb the top. It was around 2.30 when we were at the Batta's house on top. We had lunch at his place and then after freshening up ourselves my self and loki decided to go to the Shankara Peeta to check the suitable place to camp. Half the way we decided that rather than coming back all the way lets carry our luggage if its not possible lets come back. 

So we started again from Batta's house at around 4 and reached Shankara Peeta at around 4.45. Since it was getting darker, we decided to pitch the tents. Since it was a rocky surface we couldn't nail the tents we could only spread the tents and keep the luggage inside the tents so that it wouldnot be carried away by the breeze.

By around 6 it was almost dark and then, it was spectacular beauty of clouds all around me and i was enjoying the mountain view along with some light music from my ipod :-). It was the time to relax after a hard days work. The amount of satisfaction we get in carrying all the luggage through a tough path, and at the end of the day pitching a tent and relaxing on top of the mountain beside your new home is something which could only be experienced rather than anything been written about it.

What i liked this time the most was i could exactly do what i wanted to do. The whole intention of going to Kodachadri again was that i wanted to camp on top and this time i could do that. Many of my previous treks had been like we do carry all the accessories all the way and then at the end we end up staying in some man made structure.

Once it was dark it was fun to discuss about all the ghost story experiences and all of a sudden some thing struck to Naveen at a lightning speed. Guys we are on top of the peak and if it all its gonna rain we would be potential target for lightning any plans to avoid it? This thinking kept him awake the entire night. The view of the sky was spectacular with stars all around you. We could see some bright objects at great height moving at great speeds initially we couldn't understand what exactly it was later i was confirmed it was artificial satellites. I saw artificial satellites for the first time in my life :-). The best thing was yet to come at around 12, it was getting cloudy all of a sudden and our naveen couldn't handle it anymore inside the tent, he got and woke me and loki and said guys i can't sit here like this anymore i am going for a walk would you guys wanna join? Neither me nor loki was in a mood to listen hence we could only say sorry dude you can carry on. With great confidence naveen went out of tent with all the courage to drive away the clouds. Since it was Amavasya (New moon) and also the clouds had completely covered the sky it was pitch dark outside. It was not even a second that naveen had gone out and we had closed the tent door we could hear naveen shout from outside "Guys open the zip ...." Initially myself and loki couldn't understand what exactly just happened but as soon as naveen came in we couldn't just resist laughing at him. He was scared of the dark night. Well he was pick of the group, we made him pay for it rest of the trip :-)

Probably after 3am no one could sleep properly as the winds were very strong and also there was thick clouds above our tents. We knew exactly that if it rains our tents would be no match for the furry :-) however yet again i had a strong feeling that since i had gone for a trek to camp i would not be disappointed with a rain. Some how rain gods looks to favor me it has happened quite a few times now :-) and my team mates know about this.

Early morning it was a spectacular view to watch sun rise along the clouds. I was enjoying my camera work with music. I could get some very good snaps but again the desire to have a better camera was troubling me as my mind was getting few frames which my camera is not good enough to capture. 

After packing the tents, we reached batta's house at around 9 and after breakfast we started back at around 10. We reached down by around 12 and then we went to a fort near a small village called Nagara. It was in pretty good shape and we could get some good snaps over here.

We reached back bangalore at midnight. What a trek it was it had everything needed being with nature, challenging your limits and fun.

Funny Moments:
1. Naveen - We are the potential candidates for lightning
2. Naveen - Going for a walk at midnight
3. Naveen - Zip tegirooo
4. Naveen - Guys i can see something moving around the tents :-)

Trek Trail :
Bangalore - Shimoga - Kollur (Route) - Nittur - Around 5-6kms after nittur there is mud road from where we should begin the trek. Around 12- 14kms before Kollur. 

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Reader in me

Probably the silence in me, has pushed me towards books and off late i have started reading quite a few books. I had only read a few articles about Sudha Murthy but this time around i got few books for my self.  Right now i have completed 2 of Sudha Murthy's works " The Old Man & His God" in English and "Manada Matu" in Kannada. I liked both of these books as i felt its very realistic and you can see these things happening around every individual, it just needs a bit of observation and curiosity to sense and feel it. Few of the experiences even had great values its all about what we learn from the experiences we go through.

Few quotes which i liked from the book:

  1.  Attitude may not let you progress fast, but after a certain period in life its required.
  2. Some people talk freely about their feelings and hence forget fast too.
  3. No one can solve your problem, you have to do it yourself.
  4. In India people are usually enthusiastic about building temples,mosques and gurudwaras, but no one thinks it is important to build something as essential as a toilet. Perhaps because there is no punya attached to it.
  5. Money is one thing which rarely unites and mostly divides people.
  6. Earth is full of mud and dust, if you want to keep your feet clean in this world there are only two solutions, either cover the entire earth or wear a pair of sandals.
  7. I was born with relatives, but at least i can choose my friends.
  8. Anything given away for free looses its value and is not treated with the respect it deserves.
Right now i am reading the 3rd book "Wise and Otherwise". But my latest craze has been the kaggas from D.V.Gundappa (DVG) one of the best books i have ever read in my life. I will try to read most this and would try to explain as much as i can according to my understanding in my future blogs :-).

Friday, October 03, 2008

No Smoking

Its 2 days since smoking in public places is banned. All of a sudden my observations had sharpened, all along the way I have started observing people and to my horror I do see hundreds of people all along smoking in buses, small tea stalls, auto, bike and the list continues..

At times I feel like my country is lead by one bunch of fools on earth. We have all the rules on book but hardly, we have seen anything in action. When I heard this ban first thing that came to mind was how this is going to be implemented? Today I can see hundreds of constables with a stick in one hand, hardly they look like they can fine anyone its only if a inspector is present he has some receipt to fine the person who break the law. So with this kind of infrastructure who is going to fine the people who smoke in public? What will be the billing process? At times I feel like these useful yet useless laws are only made to harass people more than helping the people.  The direct impact of this would be smokers getting harassed and bribing the officers rather than a proper solution. 

Creating a new rule is not the need, rather to what extent we can implement is the need of the hour. 

Regarding the rule I had a misunderstanding that its been banned every where and when I spoke to others even they had the same view however its banned only in public places like in all government or private buildings and public places like libraries, cafes, restaurants, schools, pubs or discos, stadiums, airports, hospitals, bus stands, railway stations, police stations, courts, auditoriums or cinemas. Smokers can light up by the roadside or in their homes. But the strange thing was smokers can smoke in parks and beaches J well I guessed in a chocked city like Bangalore people go to parks to get some fresh air now they might have to share it with smokers. 

I would not be surprised if any smoker is even worried with this kind off laws, as today I saw it openly were in I saw at least 30- 40 smokers on my way back to home smoking without any fear in public.