Wednesday, August 13, 2014

The Taj experience


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Visiting Taj atleast once in a life time is almost everyone's dream....mine too..

We happened to visit this great monument a couple of years back..After visiting Agra fort on the first day of sightseeing,we were left with a very little time to pay our visit to Taj..So thought of having a brief visit that day,thinking that the next day anyway we could spend our whole time  there..The taxiwala advised us to take the Mehtab Bagh route then,because it will be less crowdy hence would fit to our time schedule..

With great excitement we were stepping towards Taj..There was a Mughal park,after taking few steps  in the park,as we couldn't see anything,we moved further just waching the plants..And suddenly you know what ? It appeared in front of my eyes leaving me speechless..

My first view of Taj...
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This view from the Mehtab Bagh,on the opposite side of the river Yamuna,the Taj offers a chance to get a shot with a more rural setting..I must say it was the unusual view of Taj..The sun was about to set then..We spent nearly 1 hour there..I'm lucky to have that wonderful sight..Later we   thanked the taxiwala..

The river Yamuna was completely dry here..
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Second day...On the way to Taj grounds....
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The camel cart
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The entrance 
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Here you can see some water in the river..
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The next morning we visited the monument in the Taj grounds,I liked it but I must admit that the yesterday's experience was much better than this..

Tuesdays with Morrie - Mitch Albom


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My first encounter with death was at the age of 18..Of course dying is probably not necessary for experiencing the fear of death..One morning,it suddenly stumbled upon my cousin's doorsteps and snatched away her husband who was roughly 27 years old..His pale face and motionless strong body has remained in my memory lane ever since..I felt like someone has slapped me so harshly to wake me up from my dreamy world..From that moment,'Death' was always a dark mystery for me..

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Later I read few books related to death but somehow I couldn't find proper answers..But in that process,I learned about life..Those books helped me to understand how precious life is..'Tuesdays with Morrie' by Mitch Albom was one of such books..It was a real life story and a memoir of Morrie Schwartz,a Sociology professor at Brandeis University,who was dying from a chronic disease,ALS..The book is all about Morrie's life lessons to his old student Mitch A,the author of this book..I'm not going to write,'Morrie said this and that'..But would like to share few notions related to this book..

Few lines from the book,
Dying,” Morrie suddenly said, “is only one thing to be sad over, Mitch. Living unhappily is something else. So many of the people who come to visit me are unhappy.” Why? “Well, for one thing, the culture we have does not make people feel good about themselves. We’re teaching the wrong things. And you have to be strong enough to say if the culture doesn’t work, don’t buy it. Create your own. Most people can’t do it. They’re more unhappy than me—even in my current condition.

My old professor, meanwhile, was stunned by the normalcy of the day around him. Shouldn’t the world stop? Don’t they know what has happened to me? But the world did not stop, it took no notice at all,

He was intent on proving that the word “dying” was not synonymous with “useless.” 

Morrie with Mitch Albom
Death always relies on the way we lived our life..i.e Not with money and all but with peace,happiness and above all with contentment..We often try to cope with tough times and try to accept them,but accepting death is an entirely different thing..But Morrie hugged death as lovingly as he hugged life..For all that was happening to him,his mind was vibrating with a million thoughts..He is the Hero of this book..But somehow I couldn't accept giving the whole credit to Morrie alone..Morrie's family also had remarkable share in this endeavour,since they tried their level best to keep him alive till his last breathe..I felt,like life,death is also a team work..A life couldn't have such a magnificent ending without few loving people around..

Few more lines from the book,
Maybe death is the great equalizer, the one big thing that can finally make strangers shed a tear for one another.

And I suppose tapes, like photographs and videos, are a desperate attempt to steal something from death’s suitcase

But there still seemed to be no clear answers. Do you take care of others or take care of your “inner child”? Return to traditional values or reject tradition as useless? Seek success or seek simplicity? Just Say No or just Do It?

Aging is not just decay, you know. It’s growth. It’s more than the negative that you’re going to die, it’s also the positive that you understand you’re going to die, and that you live a better life because of it.” 

Mitch, if you’re trying to show off for people at the top, forget it. They will look down at you anyhow. And if you’re trying to show off for people at the bottom, forget it. They will only envy you. Status will get you nowhere. Only an open heart will allow you to float equally between everyone.” 

“Death ends a life, not a relationship.”  

Later the book was made in to a movie with the same title..

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Choki Dhani - Chennai Bites 2


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When I watched 'Lamhe' in my school days,I instantly fell in love with Rajasthan ..My dream was to see a live performance of any song like "Morni bagama bole aadhi raath ma"..I know..I know..its too much to expect Sridevi dancing there :P..Visiting Jaisalmer was yet my unfulfilled dream..But when we get to know about Choki Dhani,we planned to go there in a weekend..And found that place even more interesting than we expected...There you can see everything related to Rajasthani culture except for the sandy deserts..It was like visiting a typical Rajasthani village..The people there were in their traditional attire..At dinner they served traditional dishes with nearly 15-18 varieties of Rajasthani cuisine...It was a truely nice experience..If you are living in Chennai,then Its a must visit for you..

Welcoming with Tika..
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The dancers gave a wonderful performance..The most enjoyed part for me..
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Katputhli show..
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Sunday, July 27, 2014

Jiddu Krishnamurti Foundation : Chennai

We had a great experience visiting 'Jiddu Krishnamurti Foundation' this weekend.The foundation popularly known as KFI has its head quarters at Vasanth Vihar,Greenways road,R.A.Puram in Chennai..After going through few works of J.K,I wished to visit this place since long time,but couldn't make it out till now.
It was a peaceful place with greenery all around..There was pin drop silence right from the entrance..In the immediate left,there is a Book store at the main entrance showcasing his works and Dvds of his speeches..The building has a big hall in the ground floor and a library upstairs..Apart from the huge database of Krishnamurti works,we can find various other works on philosophy in the library..
Here is the site link for more info :   http://www.kfionline.org/
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A reading place in the library.
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The library...
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Though so many book are piling up in my book shelf,I couldn't stop buying few more books..
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Friday, July 25, 2014

Shimla - The beauty of Neo-Gothic architecture


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I heard a lot about Shimla since childhood..For me Shimla and apples are synonyms..:) We reached Shimla from Kasauli via cab..Our stay was at Grand Hotel..A comfortable accomodation with tidy rooms.. After getting fresh we went for sightseeing..What I felt is,there is nothing much to enjoy the nature here..It appears to be a commercialized center with beautiful traces of British ruling..It was once the summer capital of Britishers..The best thing I observed in Shimla is its colonial architecture..A walk by The Mall road gives you few beautiful glimpses of the Neo-Gothic architecture..

Shimla in pictures..Here we go..
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If you are in Shimla,Indian Coffee House is a must visit for coffee lovers..They also served some good breakfast there.
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Boiled eggs with a pinch of salt and pepper were tasted delicious in that chilly climate
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A view from our hotel room..
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