Letter from Home-2 (Slice of Life)

slice-of-life_individual

[In October last year I started writing letters to my Doddamma, my father’s elder brother’s wife. In November, I went to my daughter’s place in Germany, she was expecting her second child. I wrote mails to my Doddamma and my mother (Amma) every week. I sent the mail to my sister-in-law, my mother lives with my elder brother and to my cousin’s wife. My Doddamma lives with her son. After returning home I thought I would post letters then decided to continue sending mails. It will reach them sooner and I can also attach photos.) My Doddamma is 86 and is not able to go out. My Amma and Doddamma enjoy the mails and the photos, specially of their great grandchildren. The internet has really changed our lives, it helps us to keep some contact with our friends and relatives, if we want to.😊]

29-01-18
Dear Doddamma and Amma,
We are all fine here. On the 26th morning we went to N R Pura. Our niece, Soumya and her husband Suresh live there. N R Pura is about 2 ½ hours away from Manipal by road. We have to cross the Agumbe ghats. We left home at 7, had breakfast on the way and were in Soumya’s place by 10. N R Pura is a very small place and is like a hill station. We were going there after many years. On the way we saw so many mango trees by the road side in full bloom. they look so beautiful.

On the way to Manipal (15)

That afternoon we went with Soumya to Sri Amrutheshwara temple Amruthapura village in Tarikere, about 1 ½ hours away. In this small village it was good to see this ancient and beautiful temple. Fortunately, this place has not become a major tourist attraction.

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The temple was built in 1196 C.E. by Amrutheshwara Dandanayaka (“commander”) under Hoysala king, Veera Ballala 2. It is built according to Hoysala architecture, like in Belur Halebidu. Daily prayers are offered by the priests. In the sanctum sanctorum there is a Nandaadeepa ( the lamp is always lit, its flame is never extinguished). The flame has been burning for more than 200 years. It seems so strange that so much has happened in our country in the last 200 years, so many ups and downs and in this corner of the world people through generations have seen to it that the flame was never extinguished.

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The carvings on the outside walls of the temple are so beautiful. We can see incidents from the life of Krishna carved in stone. We enjoyed looking at all of them. These carvings look so real, it was as if the stories unfolded in front of us. So many artisans must have made them some time in the 12th century and we are standing there and looking at the in the 21st century. It is incredible.

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We left at about 5.30. On the way we passed Bhadra dam and reached Soumya’s home at seven. It was good she was with us because it was a new road and it was dark by the time we reached home. We enjoyed each other’s company and talked to our heart’s content.

Bhadra Dam (2)

I will write more about our trip in my next letter.
We talk to Gayatri almost every day. She sends photos of the children. Kavya has started sucking her thumb before sleeping. She used to put her fist in her mouth when I was there. Advaith is busy in his kindergarten and playing with his sister.
With love,
Lakshmi

 

Amrutesvara Temple, Amruthapura, Karnataka – Apni Sanskriti
https://www.apnisanskriti.com/temple/amrutesvara-temple…
Situated in the village of Amruthapura, 67 km from Chikmagalur town of the Karnataka, the Amrutesvara Temple is build in 1196 and nestled in a peaceful place

Amruteshwara and Sharadha Devi Temple, Amruthapura, Tarikere …
http://www.technophilo.in/2012/11/amruteshwara-sharadha-devi-amruthapura…
Amrutesvara and Sharadha Devi Temple is built during Hoysala period. The temple has large surrounding area maintained by the Department of Archeology.

Letter from Home-2 (Slice of Life)

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RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #186 Body&Close

ronovan-writes-haiku-poertry-challenge-image-20161

“Devotees praying,
Standing close to the river
A body of faith.”

On the 27th we were in Sringeri, a temple town on the banks of the River Tunga. There are many temples there, prominent are the temples of Goddess Sharadamba ( Goddess of Learning) and Lord Vidyashankara. Devotees come there from different parts of our country. There is peace and serenity.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sringeri
Sringeri is a hill town and Taluk headquarters located in Chikkamagaluru district in the state of Karnataka, It is the site of the first maṭha (Sringeri Sharada Peeta) established by Adi Shankara, Hindu theologian and exponent of the Advaita Vedanta philosophy, in the 8th century CE It is located on the banks of the river Tungā and also a historical Temple (1200·…)

RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #186 Body&Close

Letter from Home-1 (Slice of Life)

slice-of-life_individual

[ In October last year I started writing letters to my Doddamma, my father’s elder brother’s wife. In November, I went to my daughter’s place in Germany, she was expecting her second child. I wrote mails to my Doddamma and my mother (Amma) every week. I sent the mail to my sister-in-law, my mother lives with my elder brother and to my cousin’s wife. My Doddamma lives with her son. After returning home I thought I would post letters then decided to continue sending mails. It will reach them sooner and I can also attach photos. My Doddamma is 86 and is not able to go out. My Amma and Doddamma enjoy the mails and the photos, specially of their great grandchildren. The internet has really changed our lives, it helps us to keep some contact with our friends and relatives, if we want to.]

23-1-18
Dear Doddamma and Amma,
I returned home on the 19th morning. Aravinda and Kuvara (my husband) had come to the airport. I reached at 7.30 and after the formalities and getting my luggage, it was almost 8.15 when I came out. It was good to be back. We reached home at 9.45.
My flight, Eithad Airways was from Frankfurt to Abu Dhabi to Mangalore. We left home in Walldorf at 6.30 in the morning. Advaith too came with us. Frankfurt is 100 kms away. It was raining and there was a lot of traffic too but we were at the airport at 7.45. Vinay (our son-in-law) and Advaith came with me till I had to go in for security check in. We are allowed 7kgs as hand luggage. But I had a little more. So, I removed a sweater, shawls and gave it to Vinay. Anyway I will not be needing them in the near future.
There was no problem with the security check in and I went to the lounge in front of Gate number 23. Gayatri had given me some sandwiches. There is Wi Fi connection and I talked to Gayatri (our daughter) and also took my photo. With mobile cameras taking our own photos (selfies) has become so common and natural. It used to look very funny in the beginning but it is fun also.

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My flight was to leave at 10.45, we started going into the plane at 9.45. It was almost 11 by the time the plane took off.
It is a very different experience as we fly through the clouds. For a few moments we are enveloped in thick white clouds. Mine was the window seat and I enjoyed looking out. When we are above the clouds it is as if we are in a different world. The blue sky and the white clouds look as if they have been cut in the middle.

18th Jan 2018 (27)

In the distance I could see a plane moving in the same direction and it looked as if both the planes were standing still. But when I saw a plane moving in the opposite direction I saw how fast we were going too. We passed through many lands, I could see the snow cover peaks and later deserts. There was only sand for miles. There were no trees at all. It was all so fascinating.

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We reached Abu Dhabi at 5 Pm local time. It would have been 2 o’clock in Germany. My luggage was booked directly to Mangalore. Abu Dhabi airport is very large, from the plane it took about ten minutes to the terminal. After immigration I walked to the gate where I was to go. After more than two months I saw so many people in one place. There are flights to different parts of the world from Abu Dhabi. My flight, Jet Airways to Mangalore was at 2.30, boarding began at 1.30. The Air Port Wi Fi connection and my book helped me to pass my time. Mangalore is to the east of Abu Dhabi and 1 ½ hours ahead. We were given something to eat in the flight and I was feeling hungry too. We reached Mangalore at 7.30 Indian time.

It was a long, sleepless journey and it was good to be back home. Mava (my father-in-law) and Keshava (my brother-in-law) had been in Manipal for a month. Mava had not been keeping well and had to be admitted in the hospital. He is 93 now. He is better now and wanted to go back home. He was waiting for me to return. He was happy to hear about Advaith and Kavya. On Saturday, 20th, we went to Maikuri (my father-in-law’s home in the village) he was happy to be back in his place.

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We returned in the evening.
We are all fine. It took me two days to get over the jet lag. It is nice to be back. On the 22nd was my birthday. It is hard to believe I am 56 now but everything is fine. Doddamma, I called you but the phone connection was not at all good. That evening we went to Sri Mahishamardhini temple not far from home.

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Seeking your blessings,
With lots of love,
Lakshmi

Letter from Home-1 (Slice of Life)

RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #185 Sing&Peace

ronovan-writes-haiku-poertry-challenge-image-20161

“Tuesdays and Fridays
Women sing to the Goddess
With peace in their hearts.”

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Ours is a land of temples. There are many temples of the Goddess Durga, she is known by different names. It is the custom and tradition for women to go to the temple of the Goddess on Tuesdays and Fridays. They go on other days too but these two days are considered auspicious. Many ladies come together and sing Bhajans and chant Shlokas. It feels very good to hear them, there is a sense of peace and tranquility in those moments.

RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #185 Sing&Peace

A few thoughts 😊

I am now sitting in Abu Dhabi airport waiting for my flight to Mangalore. It is now 9.30 local time. I have to wait for some more hours. My blogger friends in WordPress introduced me to Haiku and Tanka and Sidlak forms of poetry . I had fun writing them on the way.

“Taking off,
The plane reached the sky
To be enveloped by clouds
For a moment they hid everything
As if a white fog had taken over our lives.”

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“Blue sky and white clouds
That stretched to infinity
The plane seemed to stand still
But I knew differently
An illusion of the mind.”

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We flew over so many lands and this thought came to mind.

“Wherever we live
Beautiful or otherwise
People are the same.
Our needs are no different
And our desires are the same.”

At one point there was just sand down there.

“The earth looks so brown
Flying over the deserts
What would life be like
With no greenery in sight ?
Everywhere just sand in sight.”

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I spent two wonderful months with my a grandchildren 😊, daughter and son-in-law . Those days and every moment will  remain precious to me. Now I am waiting to reach home.

“Home sweet home
The familiar sounds
And my corner of the world
Is welcoming me with open arms
Specially the green fronds of the coconut trees.”

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And with thoughts of home my heart went out to all those who have no place to call as home. No place belongs to them and they belong to no place. A tragedy.

“Refugees,
Shunted here and there
No place they can call as home.
Forced to leave their hearths and no place theirs.
In between gray and black must be their world.”

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Last Letter from Germany (Slice of Life)

slice-of-life_individual

( I am in Germany in my daughter’s place. Her daughter was born on November 10th. I write mails to my mother ( Amma) and my father’s elder brother’s wife, my Doddamma ( elder mother ). I also send photos. My Doddamma is 86 and is mostly in her room and her home. My cousin’s wife wrote to me that my Doddamma was very happy to read and see the photos of my grandchildren which I send through WhatsApp. She says she can now imagine what they are doing. My mother too enjoys them. WhatsApp is such a blessing in many ways. It helps us to stay connected with our near ones, if we want to. 😊)

                                          14-1-18
Dear Doddamma and Amma,
Days are going by, next Thursday I will be on my way back. Advaith keeps asking me how many days are remaining for me to go back. Then he asks why I cannot stay for more days. I told him I cannot stay for more days because I don’t have permission to stay longer and his ajja( grandfather) and mava( maternal uncle)  are waiting for me. I told him he and Kavya can come for holiday to Udupi.

Kavya is growing everyday. She responds to our voice and smiles at us when we talk to her. She also moves her hands and legs when we talk to her. The tone of her crying has also changed. Fortunately she sleeps well at night.

I had written to you that Advaith and I had got a stick when we had gone for a walk. The other day he and Gayatri made a scarecrow. Gayatri cut the stick into two pieces. Then they took a box and stuck white paper on it and made a face. I am sending you a photo. It looks nice with a jacket, scarf and gloves.

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Every afternoon I have been going for a walk here. Some days I go towards the town centre and some days towards the open grounds just outside the town limits just five minutes from Gayatri’s house. There is an airfield where small gliders take off and land. There are open grounds with paths where people go for walks. I see cyclists, joggers, mothers pushing the prams and many people with their dogs.

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There are fields too where different crops are grown at different times. In one field turnips were growing, some were as big as coconuts.

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Yesterday morning Vinay, Advaith and I went to Heidelberg, about 15kms from Walldorf to see the Heidelberg castle . We had been to Heidelberg much earlier and had just walked on the main road of the old town. We walked on this street towards the castle.There is a small mountain train called Bergbahn in German. We have to buy the entrance ticket there . There is a road too.

Long back we had gone to Palani , to the temple of Lord Murugan on top of the hill in such a carriage.It was called a Winch.

This castle was built in the year 1214.  A large part of the castle was destroyed by lighting strikes in the years 1537 and 1764. We walked around and from the top we get a beautiful view of Heidelberg town and the Neckar river.

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There is a Pharmacy museum which is fascinating. We can go to the cellars of the castle which has the world’s biggest wine barrel that holds 220,000 litres of wine.

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Many tourists come to the castle. It was a nice experience.

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On our way back we ate ice-cream. I ate pista ice-cream in a cone. I was wondering what server was doing and the end result was so beautiful.

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On our way back we went to that Asian shop . Gayatri buys Sona masoori rice, dals and vegetables when they go there to buy rice. I saw boiled rice in 5 kg packets and our spices and snacks too.

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15-1-18

Here there are forest lands between towns. They are not wild forests. People go cycling and walking here. No vehicles are allowed inside. From Advaith’s kindergarten, teachers take children to the forest once a month. The children like this outing. Yesterday afternoon Gayatri and I walked in the Wald (forest land) not far from her home. Now most of the trees are bare. At other times it is green and beautiful. There are lot of wild flowers.

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16-1-18

Today afternoon I went for a walk around Fluggelande for the last time. It was very windy and fields were harvested. I think they are turnips but I am not sure.

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I am leaving on the 18th morning. I will write after I return home.
With love,
Lakshmi