Wednesday, August 19, 2009

I go to Pondicherry...

I do not intend to pen down a travelogue through this post. The reason is simple: I am geographically disabled. If you consider my travel story and set out to visit Pondi, I assure you that you will end up in Pamukkale. Well, people have their own inabilities!
What follows will be more like a scribble you make on your personal notepad. You will get to meet 8 new people here, glimpes of Pondicherry, places - quotes - instances I will remember for the rest of my life. (UQ - Unforgettable Quote, UI - Unforgettable Instance)
It all started off when Kiran came up with this 'cool' idea on a Monday morning - just after she got back from her weekend Pondicherry trip. Her idea was to dress me up in harem pants and t-shirts with those chunky beads and all that -- like the many other firangs you would see in Pondicherry. While we were discussing this, few other colleagues got together there. We quickly grabbed our coffee mugs and had a 'meeting' wherein we decided that we will leave to pondicherry in exactly two weeks time. Yes, that was a real quick decision. So the book/scribble pad obsessed Jo (a.k.a jyothy) marks out a portion on her book and passes it across the table to get a signature from each of the crew member [;)].
The book first goes to Kunal and he gives his trademark smug smile and draws a smiley. Well, he is mad... and so were the rest of us. All of us put in various smileys on that page and we marked it 'PONDICHERRY' -- and that culminated the deal! We were all now tied with an unbreakable vow (read Harry Potter) to be a part of the Pondicherry Expedition.

The crew members were:

(L-R) Kunal, Kruti, Sony, Kiran

Jyothy, Me, Laura And and and... Two tiny little starlets..

Megan and Maya

So on a Friday evening, two week's later, we wrap up work at around 7.30 and leave to Jyothy's house to grab a quick dinner and leave to the railway station. We board our train -- Garib rath, from Yeshwantnagar station at 11 PM. Contrary to the name, the train was quite chic, not to forget -- completely air conditioned! I guess whoever named the train was trying to be funny.

As soon as the train starts, Jo starts her sleep walking, and talking. She kept announcing to the world that 'She wants to sleep'. We were all calling her names (which she conveniently ignored). Once she was all set to take her place on the upper berth of the train, Kunal comes up with something which turns out to be a UQ for me - 'Jyothy... are you going to sleep? Dont you want to... to... Socilalize??' (heh!) This marks the beginning of our much anticipated expedition to Pondicherry!

Shots from within the train:

Little Meg wakes up and stares into oblivion.... a world of her own. Atleast 5 times in the trip I have noticed her looking somewhere and talking to some imaginary characters. :) Loved it! Maya (a.k.a Little miss Giggles) crying for nana (grandmom)
All of us were breaking our heads trying to get friendly with the kids -- Meg and Maya. But the kids knew better. They dint even let us look at them for atleast the first 2-3 hours. We were all bent on stalking them anyways, and four big cameras traveled all around the train clicking the kids from every angle... I wouldnt have really blamed them if they decided to break our camera lenses and our necks. As you say in Hindi -- 'Privacy bhi koi cheez hoti hain!' In the morning, myself and Kunal peep out of the train. He can easily pass off as the world's most fussy model. The guy would just not show me his face when am standing with a camera!! Fellow passengers! The much awaited Coffee-man (like spiderman) appears!

By morning, the train was quite cold. Kiran enjoying her hot cup of coffee.

Back to the 4 cameras -- We were no silly crew. We had Jyothy and Kruti -- Photo Journalists, Kunal - Fashion Photographer, and three other super (sometimes a little over) enthusiastic amateur photographers - Kiran, Sony and Myself. The professional photographers were quite sober I must say. But, we amateurs on the other hand, clicked anything & everything that was clickable... Autodriver to pizza to everything! Sony's theory was: Click 100 times and 10 of them might just be good! (UQ). I thought he ll work well as a paparazzi photographer! He used angles and perspectives incomprehensible to the limited knowledge of any human being (pro. photographers included)

It was Laura's Birthday the next day and we all sang for her in the train .

While you are still in the AC train, when shivering is replaced by sweating, you know that you have almost reached Pondi (UI) Yes, that is the only way I ll ever remember when to get down the train, if I happen to visit Pondi again!

We landed there and was accompanied by a local friend to this place called 'Ram Guesthouse'. We left our stuff there and walked over to have our breakfast/lunch. A beach side continental restaurant is where we ended up. Ordered some complicated food items and once it was all served I realized that I d kill to get a piece of South Indian Dosa. The idiot me! Continental is just not my thing! After food we decided to cut a cake (read brownie) to celebrate Laura's birthday.

The yummy Walnut brownie appears and we sing for Laura. Once she cuts the brownie.. 'Baaaahhh' goes Megan. For a moment I was lost. Why was she crying??

Poor thing was feeling left out coz
it wasn't her birthday :) She kept telling everybody that it was not Laura's but Megan's birthday! I was reminded of my birthday obsessed sister then....Such a drama queen I tell you. Well, her tears did work. In less than 2 seconds, Meg got back all the attention she assumed to have lost. The crocodile tears vanished :)

Brownie (yummy) and Watermelon (Yuckk!) juice

Kruti smacking! Meg - drama again!

Kiran tries to be all woman-like

Beach, friends, sun....... fun... :) Say Pondi and the first thing that will come into anybody head are the beaches. Well, they are worth it, I must say...

Meg all muddy!

Jo - growing down

Sony enjoying the natural beauty of the beach, as he sleeps :)

This beads-wala uncle told me that the whole of Pondicherry has clicked pictures with him! (Snob!) However, he gifted me and Megan with a chain each :)

Hotties training the little one! ;)

Laura and Maya...


That evening the local friend I had mentioned previously arranged for a neat dinner to celebrate Laura's Birthday. We went all dressed up for the dinner! The place was called 'Sambani's and it was single handedly taken care of by Sam ('Sam'bani). I was surprised to notice that he was the only guy in the kitchen cooking for all the people in the restaurant. That realization made me enjoy my grilled fish and rice much better! (UI) After a long day I got back to my room to catch up on some sleep...

The next morning, myself and kruti walked down to meet the other guys who were having English breakfast at 'La Cafe' on Beach road....

Beach side pics:

Black and White (because of the grains in the images):
In less than 10 seconds her stage was set and the very young acrobat was already attracting attention....

After all the fun and sun, we rushed back to our rooms to change and get ready to board the bus. I change my clothes and step out of the bathroom. Maya was standing next to the cot examining an empty cream bottle Jo donated to her. She looks up at me, stares for a moment and says 'Pretty' and the little miss giggles does what she does the best - giggle :) (UI) Am sure the kid has no clue what pretty means. But to hear something like that from her meant a lot to me...

We catch a quick dinner at Pizzeria (Bad bad food). The pizza was served and megan, unaware, touches the plate. The heat hits her suddenly and in front of my eyes, I saw her melt small, like how ice melts in water. I haven't seen anything that has affected me that much. (UI) Her face at that moment, doesn't get out of my head! However, she quickly recovers and gets back to touching the hot pizza! Ah.. Kids!

We rush to the bus stop to board our buses. After a super bumpy ride, sometime in the early morning we reached Bangalore. By afternoon, we were all back at work. Mundane routine hit again.... well, I guess it more like the way of life now ... Pondi now feels like a dream....

(Apologize for the poor details. Just couldn't find the time to be more elaborate. Bear with me. I ll edit this post whenever I get the time)


  1. The B/W of the l'l acrobat is awesome.. so is sweet Meg looking into oblivion.. Makes you wonder wht on earth culd she be thinking???... Could've avoided the butt shot u've named "beach road".... Y the hell did u name it so?? :D

  2. Beach road? which shot are u talking about...

    The 'beach road' is the continuation of the previous sentence and the images that follow were shot on that road... wat s the confusion?

  3. Oho.. Me thought the first pic that starts of the beach pics section was named 'beach road'.. :P and hence total confusion!!

    Anyways its baaad....

  4. really? why did u think that it is bad?

  5. like i said.. the post kept me awake.. loved it!! and KEEP all the goddamn images. u are one mad female i tell u!

  6. Happy Onam .. !!!
    strted posting some snaps in my blog ..
    if u get time pls visit and lemme know ur comments ..