Feb 28, 2006

An all-in-all trip

Exciting, different, beautiful, unique, peaceful, thought-provoking, frustrating, tiring... Our 2-day trip to Mantralayam was everything. I got to experience a conglomerate of emotions.

Exciting it was because I was visiting a new place, travelling in a new direction, passing through new railway stations (So far, the next railway station after Bangalore City was always Cantonment, now I realize it can also be Malleswaram).

Thought provoking it was as it made me think why not prepare dinner, bring them in hot pack containers and eat while travelling in the train. Is this another option for us apart from Comesum restaurant's menu? Another string of thought struck me while watching people who sit on the floors near the stinking train toilets and travel all the way. Why doesn't the government increase the number of unreserved compartments? Why people have to struggle to find a seat and end up sitting on the floors of reserved compartments?

Beautiful it was as I have never admired such a spectacular sunset and sunrise ever before. A red ball arising slowly, far from the stretched barren lands, step by step, painting the sky with all possible colours. Isn't this a wonderful sight to watch in the morning? A phenomenon which we miss everyday in this dull, boring city routine.

Unique it was since this was the first temple I have seen where the priest allows you to show the aarti plate in front of God. And ofcourse, the priest expecting you to drop some money for this privilege offered to you is not unique.

Peaceful it was as I felt a sense of tranquility and calmness after a round of adi-pradakshanam( a step by step walk around the temple).

Different it was as I got a chance to visit Panchamukhi temple after travelling 20 kms on bumpy, dusty and narrow roads with no concrete structures to be seen around and eating kadala pori (puffed rice) on the way.

Frustrating it was as I hate to wait in temples for hours together. We had booked a seva which was supposed to start at 7.30 pm but it actually started at 8.40 pm and went on till 10.15 pm. I am more at peace and can feel the blessings of God in a small temple (a Ganesha temple beneath a banyan tree is perfect for me). I'm very impatient as far as waiting for hours together, being pushed by people behind and all I get is just a glimpse of God's idol.

Tiring it was as I had to come to work as soon as I landed back in Bangalore with half-asleep eyes and a bad headache.

Overall, I can feel the effect that an activity apart from the usual routine can impart in me.

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