Friday, January 15, 2010

Is Rancho Right?

In this post, I assume that many of you' ve seen the film "3 Idiots".For those who've not seen the film ,Rancho is the name of the protagonist played by Aamir khan.

I am going to deal with only one point which Rancho propagates..."Follow your heart as far as career is concerned.Don't succumb to parental pressures".

In India,Is this possible Mr.Rancho?

Here our Hockey players have to fight for a paltry remuneration..and only mistake they ve made is ,they followed their passion as far as their career is concerned.I think that they deserve much more than what they ve really got in this deal with Hockey association.Do you think that the hardwork ,physical exertion ,amount of sweat is less than cricket or soccer?

Take any field for that matter,all talented musicians never end up like A R Rahman or Ilayaraja.Many of them struggle for their livelihood or conduct orchestras for meagre compensation.

Rancho's friend Farhan Qureshi(played by Madhavan) becomes a successful wildlife photographer after writing a letter and by sending some fabulous photos to an expert in this field
and get some interesting assignments..In India this is an absolute and fantastic dream of each and every aspiring teen,Mr.Rancho!.
In India, everyday million passionate singers(includes me too;-) are born and if all of them send their recordings to the handful of existing music directors and sit quietly without a decent degree
,do you think that they can fend for themselves?So,before following the passion please ensure that our youth have to be trained to face the brutal reality of denials and failures.

This is India! Rancho! Lots of cut throat competition is it Sports,Music.,writing, the field and u have a long line of competitors.

Have to wait in a long queue even in front of PAY and USE Toilet,if you are careless enough to miss the number in the Q,u may have to end up red faced with horrible consequences;-))

Abhinav Bindra could confidently shoot and get a gold medal because his dad is a millionaire and he did not have to worry whether he' ll get a government sponsored clerical job for his achievement in sports.He didn't have to wait patiently for sponsors . So he could follow his passion.But what about millions of talented,passionate Abhinavs who don't know how many zeroes are there in a million , but have lots of dreams in their eyes.At the end of the day there should be some decent remuneration for our passion to earn our bread and butter.isn't it?
So,many Indian Mozarts are toiling in Indian Call centres,BPOs and those who don't want to sell their passions for trivial amount end up as Homemakers, brooding and writing a requiem for their own passions.

Do I sound pessimistic? But am I not realistic too?

Are there good facilities,Academies with various interests(they have only one interest which increases the interest of the loan taken by parents;-))) which can provide indepth research facilities where we can connect with our passion? and above all We, Indians have the typical "Jack of all trades and Master of None " Syndrome, so before we start identifying our passion we find ourselves in the final year of a useless degree course:(,where we got admitted like cattle herd with so much unwanted nailbiting competition;-))

So,the conclusion is...

If the parents have enough financial backing ,then better send their kids to good Foreign Universities where they can provide good indepth research facilities for the kids to pursue with their field of interest and for the rest of us all Indians, Let us look upto the West to spot the Rising Sun;-)) and above all ...Sorry! Rancho! :-)))
CU in next post!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Fond Memories of Karde Trip

Hi!Happy New Year !Let this new year bring waves of happiness to all of u!.

First let me explain where Karde Beach is located for people who are unaware of Maharashtra's beautiful locales.

Karde is one of the finest beaches in Konkan coast of Maharashtra.Thanks to the poor Marketing strategy of Maharashtra Tourism Dept.,many beaches in this coast are untouched and non commercial.Karde is 13 kms away from Dapoli town (Ratnagiri District) which is in Konkan coast.Nearest Railway station is Khed in Konkan Railways.The distance from pune to karde is approx.225 kms.Surrounded by many hillocks ,rivers,rivulets and amazing landscapes Konkan region is a feast to a nature lover's eyes.

I ve planned to write this post in a more personal way rather regular formal travelogues.So,readers who expect stereotype travelogue are permitted;-) to skip this post.
One more warning!This is a big post bcos I have lots of things to narrate..;-)So have patience.;-)

Score was the headcount of our group,so planning started well in advance. Hotel Booking was done through Mr.Damle of pune. Vehicle booking was done through Mr.Somani.(Contact numbers of persons mentioned in this post will be given on request).

27th Dec was the D Day and with all the excitement and happiness the Mini bus started with a roaring "Ganpati Bappa Morya" at 6.30 am.But happiness lasted only for an hour.HemantRao noticed the pitiable condition of the tyres and showed it to us.Tyres were on the last stage of their life cycle;-)
Praying to Almighty we proceeded further.We took the Varandh Ghat Route which is quite famous for its unfriendly twists and turns.But that route offers some of the breathtaking views of Sahyadri mountain Range.We stopped the Bus at a viewpoint and had Bhajjis and Tea from the Food stalls which were busy due to the holiday season.Our next stop was Vitthal Kamat Restaurant in Mahad.10 Kms away from Mahad was a sign board for Dapoli(57 kms) and we turned to left and proceeded ..suddenly our driver remembered that he forgot(!!!) to fuel the vehicle.This naturally fuelled our anger but couldn't help but reverse back to Mahad to fuel the bus and again returned back via the same route.We spotted a lovely big tree and immediately jumped there with our lunch packets and fuelled ourselves and some of our members took a break by playing frisbee and volleyball.
Yummy lunch paved way for a lovely siesta,suddenly a thumping noise disturbed my dream;-) and I noticed that vehicle was in stationary mode.Pat shouted"Puncture Zali"..
Oh!No! All of us got down to see what had happened.One of the tyres had kicked the bucket:-)..Driver started explaining that a stone has entered the tyre and punctured it.Rajen quipped"even a finger is enough to puncture this tyre":-).Luckily Bus got punctured near a scenic lake,so immediately Ravindra and other young members vanished from puncture spot and started taking pics near the lake.But I was the self proclaimed Chief Tour Operator(CTO);-))) ,so I was bit tensed,as a result;-) our travel agent was bombarded by Rajendra:-)).

Ghat Road was quite narrow,so traffic had to be regulated.Baba(My FIL) took incharge of Traffic Control(!!!) and used his maroon color jacket as a flag;-)He shook the jacket in such a way that drivers of other vehicles got terrorised;-)) , tensely applied their brakes and My FIL sincerely;-)) asked them to drive further;-))).
Stepney was also in miserable condition but no other go...Driver changed the stepney.After the Mobile missiles,our Travel Agent promised us to send a brand new vehicle in the morning:-)).
After Stepney fitting ceremony,our Bus proceeded towards Dapoli.
Sign Boards are very small in this region.Karde/Murud diversion was indicated in a small sign Board and it is very easy to miss that Board.We took the deviation to Karde Road.Road was in quite bad condition.But Arabian Sea in the right side made us forget the troubled journey.We dropped Phatak company in Hotel Sagar Hill which was just 200 metres away from Hotel Seaface in which we were staying.

Rooms in Hotel SeaFace are spacious ,you can have a splendid view of the Sea from Room itself.
But BathRoom cum Toilet was very small;-)).There are only 4 or 5 resorts in Karde and surprisingly Tariff is very nominal.(Rs.832-Rs.1500).Food in Hotel Seaface was delicious.Hotel staff were very friendly and helpful.

When we reached the Hotel in the evening ,a boatman who arranges for Dolphin Safaris approached us and we booked a boat for next morning 8.30 am for Rs.1500/- for our group.

Karde Beach is serene and idyllic place for a vacation.It has got a very flat beach, shallow waters and soft sand.In the night we couldnt resist our temptation to reach to the sea.We took our Torch lights and went to the Beach in the night, strolled there aimlessly and came back.I swear,it is a great feeling to wander in the beach in the night.

One major problem we faced in this Hotel was non availability of early morning Tea.Their kitchen started after 7 am.
Thanks to Mr.Somani's sincerity,next morning a new bus in good condition arrived at our Hotel and this cheered us a lot.
At 8.30 am we assembled in the Beach and set in to the Sea for seeing Dolphins in dingy(fisherman boats) with Yamaha engine. We couldn't see Dolphins for first 15 minutes.After that Dolphins dived,flipped, was really worth watching.So,immediately we decided for another trip on 30 th morning 7.oo am.
After returning from Dolphin safari,We pitched in our beach cabana, played in the beach with frisbee,volley ball, had a great time,returned to Hotel,and had a delicious lunch.Post lunch,we rushed to the timepass hut in our hotel and played cards there,tied kinna to the kites.Around 3.30 pm preeti shouted excitedly "wow!parasailing!..."
In karde,Parasailing is done by tying the parachute to a jeep and we can glide upto 100 to 150 mts.They charge Rs.300/- per person.

After an hour,we got ready and rushed to the beach, 7 of us did paragliding.For me, it was the first time,I was quite nervous but excited.Before I could get the feel of it,I landed safely;-).
Tej got bored and wanted a change so we ventured to Dapoli for our dinner.But poor thing,He had to satisfy himself with homely meals at a place which was run by Soman &family.He couldn't get his favourite chinese food.;-)
In Konkan region you can find many such places where they prepare homely food for have to place the order 2 hours well in advance.
Next day was Anjarle.Anjarle is 24 kms from Dapoli.Route to Anjarle itself is very scenic.We had to cross the Anjarle creek(Jog River) over a beautiful bridge .We stopped for a few minutes in a view point to have a magnificient view of Arabian Sea and suvarnadurg fort of Harnai and on the right side we could spot the shining white Anjarle Temple.Anjarle Ganpati Temple is very famous and here ganpati is known as "Nawsala paavnaara Ganpati" in marathi(meaning" who responds immediately to the desperate call of a devotee")
Before reaching Anjarle we informed Siddhi vinayak Tourist centre in Anjarle village to arrange food for us.The temple was very calm and peaceful.
We reached the siddhivinayak center of Anjarle village.This place is very beautiful.This is run by Mr.Nijsure & family.They' ve got some rooms near the beach also..
Entire stretch (around 150 mts) from the entrance to the dining place was having shady trees and plantations of coconut,betelnut,mango,banana.The pathway was just more than a metre wide.This pathway leads to the dining hall which is facing the Anjarle Beach.We had a tasty lunch here.Immediately we went to the beach.Anjarle beach is also a very flat beach with wide expanses.There we flew some kites and Tanav relished some sand;-).It was a cloudy day.So had a good time rolling on the sand facing the sky and passing clouds.There was no one in the beach except our group.After 2 hours we had Tea ,collected some dried wood and logs for campfire,I was quite afraid of the reptiles peeping out;-)but Ravindra and Vinsu were so enthusiastic,they collected all possible material for campfire and dumped them in the bus to our driver's dismay;-)). By Sunset we reached Karde.

Next day morning we again ventured into Sea for spotting Dolphins.But could spot only the fins.:( and returned back.We pitched the white tent in the beach and just freaked out in the beach.After the lunch,I was just dozing,Baba and Preeti's mom knocked our door heavily and shouting"Dolphins on the Shore!"."Dolphins on the shore?"I bounced from the bed and ran towards the beach in the hot Sun to meet the rare visitors.Adi (who loves Discovery and National Geo channels and their photographers ) had already rushed with a camera;-) and vinsu was running behind him.Running under the hot Sun made us panting for breath.Oops!They were black rocks shining in the Sun.Low tide had ebbed out that the rocks which were not visible in the morning were now shining:-) at us.After coming back to Hotel,there was a roaring, teasing laughter from our group members and we braved it and gracefully accepted the title "3 Idiots" which was conferred on us by them:-))).

At 3 pm ,We started out for Keshav
Raj temple which was near Asud(approx 5km from Dapoli and turn right),KeshavRaj Temple is located amidst lush green land,lovely stream and folding hills.We have to trek for half an hour through a beautiful stretch which has lots of palm ,coconut,betelnut,cashewnut and mango plantations.We have to climb down one hill,cross a small narrow over bridge built on a lovely stream and again climb up a small hill to reach the temple.The entire place is filled with tranquility except for occasional chirping of birds.The temple is also very peaceful.
On our way back,we stopped at Murud Beach, watched the Sea turning crimson red during the Sunset.Murud is a commercial beach when compared to other konkan beaches.After finishing with Camel Rides,Bullock cart Rides we returned back.
On 31st morning we went to Harnai Swarnadurg fort.Inside ,it is in ruins,but we walked through the huge steps and amazing secret getaways of the fort.We had our lunch in Hotel Vrindavan in Dapoli(here Tejas got his chinese food:-)) and went to Chandika Devi Mandir in Dabhol which is 27 kms from Dapoli.
The temple is in an underground natural cave.To reach the deity you have to go through a low darkened passage which has only oil lit lamps.The deity here is believed to be swayambhu,which is formed naturally on its own. The location of this temple is very beautiful,rocky and rugged and worth visiting.
On 31st night we had a sumptuous dinner,lit campfire,self arranged DJ party;-))(full credits to Hemant Rao) in the Hotel's timepass hut,all of us danced with effervescent energy to welcome the new year, watched the Full moon high tide touching the edge of the beach...These are the lovely memories which I would love to etch in my mind and now waiting for the next Freak out Trip.Cu in my next post.Hope to keep my next post a shorter one;-)))