Friday, December 14, 2007

Trip to shivanasamudra

We went on a day's trip to shivanasamudra recently. Here is an account of the journey. And here are a few photos as well.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Best days

Some of the best days of my life have been spent in the small town of Gadag.

This happened during the birth of my son. My daughter was 4 years old at that time.

I reached Gadag on the due date. My wife and daughter were already in Gadag. On the due date, my wife was admitted to the hospital. By God's grace, delivery was fine.

My wife and the child were in hospital for nearly two weeks, recovering. My daughter had never been without her mother even for a single day till then, hence we were a bit worried on how she will cope up with the new change in the family.

During these days, the time I spent with my daughter are some of the best days of my life. Our activities were simple, yet so wonderful and refreshing. Things like waking up, giving bath, feeding, story telling, drinking sugarcane juice, going around the town on bicycle were so routine and simple, but the memories still give me intense pleasure. It gets very hot in Gadag, especially during the summer months. Hence, we used to venture out on bicycle only during mornings or evenings. Also, my F-i-L had fixed a child seat on the bicycle which made the ride comfortable for my daughter. We visited the Veera Narayana temple so many times during those days.

A couple of activities which gave great thrill and excitement to my daughter were visiting her mother and little brother in hospital and taking the tonga (horse carriage) at the railway station.

We used to visit the hospital perhaps twice a day and spend very little time there. Even though we would have liked to spend more time, the excitement of my daughter was uncontrollable and perhaps cause discomfort to the recovering mother and child. Hence, our time at hospital was limited.

But, there was no limit to our time on the tonga! Every day, in fact even twice on some days, my daughter and I used to walk up to the railway station and take the tonga from there back to home. The walk was only about 10 minutes, but the ride back was way longer as we instructed the tonga to take us around the town before dropping us at home. Usually, the rate has to be bargained. After a couple of days, however, the tonga fellows got so used to seeing us that they simply accommodated us.

An image which will be forever etched in my memory is that of my daughter and her grandfather riding fast on the bicycle with both of them focussed on looking forward keenly. This incident happened before my son was born. During weekends and holidays, I used to visit Gadag and stay there with the family for the duration of the weekend / holiday. It is an overnight journey and I used to reach Gadag at around 7am and then walk till home. During one such weekend, it seems my daughter woke up early and insisted on going to the bus stand to receive me. By the time they started, I had already reached Gadag and was walking towards home. This is the time I saw the image as described above. In fact, both of them were so focussed on looking forward that they completely missed me standing by the side of the road. I had to shout to make them stop!

Some of the best days of my life have been spent in the small town of Gadag.