Saturday, 22 April 2017

World Earth Day 2017

Every year on Earth Day, we pledge to make earth a better place to live. But do the promises go beyond the speeches, posts, blogs and other media hype? Sadly no!

Ghumakkad was in Chennai and attended the Annual Day of his grandson's school. The children of the school had put up a spirited show. Class V students performed in a multi-media presentation titled 'Save Elephant Save Earth'. It had a powerful message. 
Another dance-drama based on the life of great poet Subramanya Bharathi depicted his writings on Nature and environment besides other topics. Pictures:

Full marks to the teachers and students of Shishya OMR School, Chennai for delivering a powerful message. I am convinced if at all we can save the earth, the campaign has to be driven by the children. Such a campaign was successfully run in Delhi in 1997 to reduce pollution during Diwali. All thanks to the schools in Delhi and their children.

You may browse Ghumakkad's earlier message on Earth Day 2013 here.

Each of us can make a difference. Let us do our bit to leave a better environment for our children and grandchildren. Haven't we borrowed it (the Environment) from them? Think.

Thanks for browsing

     -Harsh-the-Ghumakkad/ 22nd April 2017

Saturday, 8 April 2017

Grandpas need no Gym

Grandparents don't need to go to a Gym. Their grandchildren give them enough exercise. Ghumakkad experienced this fact recently when Naman, his two year old grandson came visiting from California USA. One week of non-stop action. Naman modified the yoga asanas योग  आसन  in his own way. See the pictures.

Here is a 30-second video of Naman somersaulting!

You may browse an earlier post of a grandpa-grandson hike here. You sure don't need any exercise when your grandchildren are around. Whatever be their age.

As someone had said "Grandchildren are the hands by which we take hold of heaven". Mere presence of grandchildren is heavenly. Last picture in this story says it all.

Am sure all grandparents would have related the story with their own grandchildren. And all others, pray that God grants you the precious gift of a grandchild soon!

Credit for the pictures go to both Neeta and Akanksha. Thanks to them, Ghumakkad got into the frame and not behind the lens!

Thanks for browsing,

   - Harsh-the-Ghumakkad with Neeta Bhargava/ 14th April 2017

Thursday, 30 March 2017

90th Birthday

What do you write
when your Dad turns ninety?
 Not easy to summarise
sixty-five years that
you have been with him.
Your own age
pales in significance.
In fact, you
feel younger in parent's presence!

So, first thing
you thank God
for giving us this day.
We are grateful to Him
for bringing us into
such a blessed family.

when we were younger
you had been
very strict with us-
your children.
But not as strict with
your grand-children and great-grand-children!
Perhaps we now understand
as we are grand-parents ourselves!
And the joy of
grand-parenting goes beyond
disciplining the grand-children.

What did we learn from you?
Many things.

Firstly being systematic and meticulous
in whatever you did.
ensuring your shirts remain wrinkle-free even while travelling,
mothballing the woolens and quilts after every winter,
clipping your trouser bottoms on your bicycle to prevent grease stains,
cross-indexing mammoth records of BITS BoG and Senate proceedings in pre-computer era,
fixing the mosquito net on our charpoys in the lawn every night
and many such impressions.

You told us
“take care of your things, they will take care of you”.
polishing our shoes-
a habit which we continue even today.

We also learnt
team work from you.
Every Holi and Diwali
you would greet and hug
every staff member including cleaners and sweepers
as they came home in Pilani
to seek your blessings.

You taught us
to be steadfast yet humble.
In all situations
whether happy or not-so-happy.

you lost all your teeth early
you used your dentures
to entertain the grand children
and some time scare them too!

You broke five ribs
when you were eighty-eight.
But you not only
bounced back
but also continued
doing all the exercises.

we can’t thank you enough
for all
that you have done for us.
We only want
to say
‘We Love You’.

May God grant you
good health
so that you continue
to bless us all!  
                -          From all of us 2G to 4G!

-          2G: Harsh-Neeta, Raj-Sarita, Poonam-Rishi

-          3G: Akanksha-Ankur; Ankush-Prabjoth; Deepti-Kartik

-          4G: Ansh, Nikhil, Arjit, Anuva, Naman

                       -          And besides 2G, 3G and 4G, our Ma joins us in wishing you from the heaven

Dear Reader, 
Please join us in wishing our Dad a very happy 90th birthday on 1st April 2017!
Thanks for browsing,

    -  Harsh-the-Ghumakkad/ 30th March 2017

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Hampi Vitthala Temple

Vitthala Temple is the epicentre of Hampi's attractions. It has been acclaimed as the most extravagant architectural showpiece of Hampi. As per the website "The temple is built in the form of a sprawling campus with compound wall and gateway towers. There are many halls, pavilions and temples located inside this campus. Vitthala or Vittala, is a reincarnation of lord Vishnu."
No amount of words can explain this spectacle.  

Ghumakkad visited Hampi in Feb-17. We brought to you the road ride from Hyderabad to Hampi earlier. If you missed seeing the red-chilli farms, click here!

This picture story revolves around the Vitthala temple complex in Hampi, Karnataka.
Those not familiar with the location of Hampi, please see the map below.
We had stayed at Karnataka State Tourism Development Corporation (KSTDC) hotel Mayura at Kamalapur. Few pictures of the hotel and it's environment can be browsed in our previous story
Vitthala Temple complex is just a 10-minute drive from the hotel. 

All the monuments have a metal signage giving a brief history and salient features. It is very informative.
It was also very heartening to see similar signage in braille for visually impaired tourists. The braille signage is on a metal sheet which can withstand rain and dew. See the picture below.

To minimise vehicular pollution, electric golf carts ferry the tourists from parking lot to the main entrance.


Seeing these ruins, I was reminded of Las-Ruinas, a resort created amidst the ruins in South America. Tremendous potential exists in Hampi also for a similar venture. In fact, Hampi-by-night project is underway where tourists will be able to see the ruins at night lit specially.

Here is a location sketch of the monuments.

As we ended the day, we carried back the images of an era gone by.
More stories of other ruins and monuments will follow.

We would like to mention two stories on Hampi written by Ms Neeta Lal in the Economic Times and the DNA. Do browse.

Bye till the next story on other parts of Hampi.

    -  Harsh-the-Ghumakkad/ 26th March 2017