Tag Archives: Uttar Pradesh

Freedom Trip

Apologies… my last post was on more than 6 months back.

Just an excuse that I am running an IT company since April 2018 and as happens with any business, there are ups and downs. We don’t get time when its up but get plenty when its down :D.  Being busy I missed posting a few important events and trips. But don’t want to miss this one as this is very special :).

I was fortunate to get a chance to work overseas and spend 7 years in a very beautiful country like Singapore, got many opportunities to travel to various countries of southeast Asia like Malaysia, Indonesia, Cambodia, Thailand, and others.

On the other side, when people fascinate about traveling these countries I have developed a fascination to travel and explore India. Since I came back in 2013, I keep on traveling wherever I could on holidays, though my limits are only 500KM around Delhi.

Once a year I keep everything aside and go on a road trip with friends, I call it freedom trip when everyone in the group is free to live (eat, drink or sleep) as they want to. My group is very limited to the old and close friends only in which one is Dr. Sharad and other my brother Bal Krishna. This freedom trips are happening every year since 2008, but 2018 was an exception when it did not happen. This year again, February had the perfect weather to hit the road with friends, leave the concrete jungle, noise, pollution, and the crowd behind and go to some remote area of the country.

Staying in the wilderness gives me a feeling of immense peace and happiness. MP is always our most favorite state, it has the lowest population density and has large (very large) nature reserves, where else you want to go when you wish absolute peace!

I went to Lucknow for a business trip, decided to stretch this into a vacation, called Sharad and BK and we were good. We have started from Allahabad (Now Prayag). The travel itinerary was as below –

Prayagraj -> Sagar ->  Sanchi -> Bhopal -> Panna Tiger Reserve -> Khajuraho -> Prayagraj

There was a night halt on each destination. Posting a few pics of the trip.

Scarecrow sighted on the way to Sagar
Scarecrow sighted on the way to Sagar
A ruin in Sanchi
A ruin in Sanchi
Rain water harvesting of 300 BC
Rainwater harvesting of 300 BC
We 3 at Sanchi
We 3 at Sanchi
BK enjoying nature in Panna Tiger Reserve
BK enjoying nature in Panna Tiger Reserve
Ken river in Panna Tiger Reserve
Dawn at Ken river in Panna Tiger Reserve
Dew on a flower
Dew on a flower
A bird (possible Bulbul) at Panna Tiger Reserve
A bird (possible Bulbul) at Panna Tiger Reserve
A flower and a bee at Khajuraho
A flower and a bee at Khajuraho
BK at Ghat of Vindyachal, plains of Himalaya on backdrop
BK at Ghat of Vindyachal, plains of Himalaya on the backdrop
A migratory bird at Sangam, Prayag
A migratory bird at Sangam, Prayag
Sharad feeding bird from hand
Sharad feeding bird from the hand
A Sadhu drawing something on sands at beach of Ganga, Prayag
A Sadhu drawing something on sands at the beach of Ganga, Prayag
Golden hour at Sangam
Golden hour at Sangam

We are Colored! (Holi 2019)

This should be celebrated as no-discrimination day internationally as this is the only day of the year when we know person in-front as a fellow human being and do not ask of his/her race, religion, cast or any other crap. Sometimes I wonder how much ahead of time our forefathers have thought before starting this festival and the way it is celebrated AMAZING!!!

Well on shooting Holi, this was my first time in the middle of the crowd and chaos all around me. Loud music, rain dance, colored powder, colored water, wet and colored people grabbing each other to color, hugs, smile, shout, laugh, spring breeze, you just name adversity and imagine me in the middle of that carrying a costly DSLR which is highly sensitive to powder and water. Luckily people were considerate and noticed the camera in my hand… phew!

Post processing was the most adventurous bit as my personal computer with Adobe Lightroom went kaput before downloading raw (CR2 in Canon) files, being a Linux expert I took up the challenge of post-processing photos on Linux (I use another Laptop for work with Ubuntu). Got a great tool for Linux – Darktable which has all most all features of Lightroom but being naive to this tool, I am not yet very satisfied with the outcome.

I think I should log more on my thoughts on discrimination bit – Proving ourselves superior to others is human nature, so until two people are different there will be discrimination. At the same time there is no possibility that any two people will be the same, not even monozygotic (identical) twins as they get different experience and influences in their own lives, this is how nature works and wants us to be different. Educating people on how they treat others is the only way to suppress (if not eradicate) the feeling of being superior.

Well enough! … take a look of few photos I have shortlisted and post-processed in Darktable on Ubuntu –

Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019
Holi 2019

Garhwa Fort

Garhwa fort is located in town Shankargarh, approximately 50 KM south to Allahabad. It was built in year 1750, but it has few remains of structures of Gupta dynasty (240-605 CE).

“I think stones have a lot more experience than any living being, you just need to sit with them and have your ears open to listen the tales.”

A ruin of temple in Garhwa fort
A ruin of temple in Garhwa fort
A ruin of temple in Garhwa fort
A ruin of temple in Garhwa fort
A ruin of temple in Garhwa fort
A ruin of temple in Garhwa fort

Yearly ritual – part 1

Happy new year !

I guess it’s the best way to start the blog, its first post of year after all.

Well, there were 2 long weekends first of x-mas and then new year, took few offs in between and got 10 days of break from 23 Dec 2017 to 1 Jan 2018.

Few years back I came up with thought of giving sometime to myself, to slow down a bit and spend some time with friends, nature, wildlife or whatever I love to do, actually live a different way of life all-together and do whatever I can do to relax and since then it has became a part of my yearly plan, which happens only in winters.

Reached  to home town (Allahabad) on 23 Dec. Visited Sangam with brother and my ancestral place with dad on 24 Dec. Finalized my trip with brother BK and Dr. Sharad. Posting few photos taken on 24th.

A Sadhu at Sangam
A Sadhu at Sangam (Allahabad)

My great grandfather was the one who first moved in to my ancestral village from somewhere, got some land which was very cheap or even free that time and started farming. He had 3 sons, my grandfather and his 2 younger brothers, once grown up they built their own houses next to each other, they all had 3 sons, but slowly my fathers generation and my generation started moving out of the village and now not a single person lives there. Those 3 houses are now started turning into ruins. The front of house and the place between house and well is turned into a mini forest. I remember, when we use to visit the village in my childhood, we were not having enough space left to put a Charpai (a portable bed) to sleep, ironically only snakes and scorpions lives in that area now.

Well build by my grandfather and his 2 brothers
Well build by my grandfather and his 2 brothers
Temple build by my grandfather and his 2 brothers
Temple build by my grandfather and his 2 brothers
Cluster fig (hindi. Goolar) tree, we use to spent our summer noon on branches of these tree in childhood
Cluster fig (Hindi: Goolar) tree, we use to spent our summer noon on branches of these tree in childhood
House of our neighbor blacksmith, like all others he has also moved to some city for job
House of our neighbor blacksmith, like all others he has also moved to some city for job

We once had mud-wall house like this one, these are very comfortable in summer and we use to sleep on dry paddy plant to keep our selves warm.

Dusk
Dusk

I have visited this place many time since childhood and was fascinated by beauty of this place, this is a very large ground next to river Ganga, due to flooding every monsoon no one lives there.

First day in Allahabad and second day of this yearly ritual was dedicated to dad :). Will post about 3rd day later. Keep watching this space….

Yearly ritual

It has became a ritual for us (brother Balkrishan, Dr. Sharad and me) to travel together once every year, this trip happens in month of December or January from last 5-6 years.

I had planned it during new year earlier, but that could not happen as everyone was occupied during that time. Planning this trip every year is really challenging, I have to take family and drop them Allahabad first which depends on the fact that every one well and there is no school tests of kids, convincing Dr. Sharad to shut his clinic for a week is another challenge. Sometimes I think not to plan this at all, just pack the bag and go and leave rest to destiny.

MP especially Orchha has became our favorite destination, it has complete package in it, slow paced and very less crowded township, has great history of Bundela kings, ruins, rocky Betwa river, great food at Hotel Sheesh Mahal and cheap lodging at hotel (which I love when travelling without family).

Sharad was little agitated with Orchha and MP but somehow we dragged him in.

After spending a day at Allahabad, we started to Bhedaghat, spent a night there and then started to Pachmarhi, stayed at Orchha for one night.

I am sure MP will be out of option from next year onward and I will miss major part of these trip which is driving.

Oh yes! forgot to mention that my car has completed 100000 KM since I bought it. Its a kind of achievement that I drove so much in last 4 years.

Posting few moments which I collected during this our yearly ritual 🙂

Kids of Dad adopted family with their pets at village, Allahabad
Kids of Dad adopted family with their pets at village, Allahabad
A sadhu at Sangam, Allahabad
A sadhu at Sangam, Allahabad
Evening at Dhoopgarh, Pachmarhi
Evening at Dhoopgarh, Pachmarhi
A priest heading towards Raja Ram Temple, Orchha
A priest heading towards Raja Ram Temple, Orchha
A family in discussion, Orchha
A family in discussion, Orchha
Dr Sharad, getting water spray after shave
Dr Sharad, getting water spray after shave

Winter Returns

I always loved winters since my childhood, sitting around bonfire, drinking and eating hot stuffs, fog, clothing and list goes on… posting few photos of winter of my hometown Allahabad. Photos of events, happenings I always noticed, hope you like it…

Girls of my neighborhood around fire
Girls of my neighborhood around fire
Nieces and my daughter around fire
Nieces and my daughters around fire
Mater-Aalu (Peas-Potato)
Mater-Aalu (Peas-Potato) A popular breakfast
Sangam and Maagh Mela
Sangam, Magh Mela and Fog
Sweeper around fire at Kumbh Mela
Sweepers around fire at Kumbh Mela
My friend Dr Sharad in muffler
My friend Dr. Sharad in muffler
Watchman at Orchha Fort
Watchman at Orchha Fort
Dr Rajat at mustered field
Dr. Rajat at mustard field
Flying kite on Khchdi (Makar Sankranti falls on 14 Jan)
Bro BK and niece Flying kite on Khichdi (Makar Sankranti, falls on 14 Jan)
Red Guava
Red Guavas
New generation at Dad's farm
New generation at Dad’s farm
New generation at Dad's farm
New generation at Dad’s farm
Cauliflower, Cabbage and Carrot
Cauliflower, Cabbage and Carrot