Apr 11, 2008

Unplanned perfection

That's how the drive to Madikeri was last weekend (Update: a couple of weekends ago). A fresh experience! As on Friday, I was in two minds whether to go for the trip or not. In the end, it turned out to be a memorable trip.

Only an outdoor event can force me to wake up at 4 AM. We got ready quickly and all our bags were packed. The city hasn't yet started its gear and it was a perfect time to start our Indica's gear. We picked up our other friends on the way and hit the Mysore Road before sunrise. The weather was cool and the day began with a cloudy sky. After a quick breakfast at Kamat, we were back on the road ,occasionally stopping on our way to capture the beautiful scenic spots in our camera. It started drizzling and the downpour became heavy by the time we reached Bylakuppe, a Tibetan settlement area. The monastery was an awesome sight and was neatly maintained. The drive was enjoyable, more so to the drivers who had fun overtaking the Accents and Santros and also being overtaken by the Altos and 800s and hitting 80 and 100 kmph. The road was superb for the most part except for a few kms between Bylakuppe and Kushalnagar.

We stopped for lunch at Kushalnagar and then decided to go to Nisargadhama,a serene island. Rain played spoilsport and we couldn't spend much time in this beautiful island formed by the river Cauvery. Madikeri welcomed us with cool breeze, mild drizzle and spectacular viewpoints. After a bit of tussle identifying the location of our homestay, we reached the place before sunset. Although food not being part of the homestay was a disappointment, we were able to arrange for dinner. After spending the rest of the evening playing cards and dumbsharads, we had a good night sleep.

Waking up late on a Sunday morning doesn't change whether the place is Bangalore or Madikeri, I suppose. After a nice Coorgi breakfast and a refreshing coffee prepared by aunty at the home stay, her son took us on a trip towards their coffee plantations. This is the first time I happened to see coffee plants and touch-me-not plants. The sky was clear and the sunlight lifted our spirits. After an hour at the Raja's seat, we hit the roads again and with no rains, we crossed the bad roads in no time. It was a smooth journey towards Bangalore with pitstops at Kushalnagar for lunch and Cafe Coffee day.

The whole experience has been amazing and I can happily put a tick mark against Madikeri in my to-visit list :-)

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