We had been to Maikuri on the 10th afternoon. Amma stayed behind in my sister-in-law’s parents’ house in Mangalore. In Maikuri the toilets and bathrooms are outside the house, ( in our villages it has always been so, but things have changed now) amma would have found it difficult at night. Mava is fine, though he does not go out much. On the 11th morning we got up early. We cut all the vegetables for the different dishes. Mava helped too. He is 93 and still interested to help.
By 7 o’clock the cook, Raja, came. He comes to cook for any function in our house. Before him his father used to come. He has two daughters, they are teachers and are married. He, his wife and son are into catering business. They have some land too. He said catering has become very popular now. Two priests come for the rites to be performed. Today we finished a little late.
I helped the couple who live in the home to cook and help to clean up. We left at 4.15, stopped at Mangalore to pick amma. My sister-in-law’s mother made tea. We reached Manipal at 7.15.
To continue with our trip doddamma.
Around Kausani on 16th June
It was raining heavily when we got up on the 16th morning. At 7.30 we called Devender, the taxi driver. He said he had already come to the market and would come to the hotel as soon as the rain stopped. We had tea and left at 8.30. We had breakfast in a small hillside eatery. It was managed by a Pahadi family. ( Pahad in Hindi means hill, Pahadi means people of the hills). The Pahadi gentleman cooked the parathas on a wood burning stove. I asked him whether I could take his photo, he agreed with a smile. His wife and children helped him. The pickles served with parathas are very tasty.
We first stopped at Pingalkot shawl factory. The handlooms were in the basement. Mohan Prajapati showed us the working of the loom. He explained to Aravind very nicely. In the show room above, Aravind made some purchases.
On the way we saw the cultivation of paddy going on. Here it is mostly terrace cultivation and we saw ladies hard at work in the small fields. Our next destination was Baijnath temples. The temples here are just like the ones in Jageshwar. The main temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. There is a huge lake in front of the temple and there are lot of fishes in it. Our driver was telling us a story about this lake. Long back some army officials caught fish in this lake, they are not allowed to. When they decided to leave, their vehicle would not start. Only after they put the fish back in the lake, could they leave.
We then stopped at Kausani Tea garden. We walked among the tea bushes. We drank green tree in a small kiosk. There were many tourists. In north India people drink a lot of tea so it must be an interesting experience to see the place where tea grows. Our next halt was a place from where we had to walk to Rudradhari temple and falls. An experience which we shall remember for a long time.
Doddamma, on the 4th, appa’s cousin had come to see amma. She lives in Sringeri. Her life has been a tough one. She lives in an old age home.
On the 7th evening my brother’s daughter came. She and her husband live in Mumbai. She had come to see the grandparents. On the 8th she left for Mangalore after breakfast. Due to the rains our garden was overgrown with grass. Two workers came and cleaned the garden in front and back. We always call them. They are paid daily wages.
Aravind’s college reopened on the 12th, he had a month’s vacation.
Advith and Kavya are fine. Today is Advaith’s 5th birthday. Yesterday they invited two of his friends and their parents for lunch. Next Sunday his kindergarten friends are coming home for a birthday party.
We are all fine.
Built ages ago,
People still worship.
The positive energy,
Draws people again and again.”