Anuradha Goyal Travels

Travel Tales that led me to discover Art, History, Cultures wrapped under myriad landscapes.

Sunday, February 01, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, February 01, 2015

Sunday Shot: Purple Heron in-flight

Purple Heron bird in-flight

Purple Herons are larger in size compared to the most common Pond Herons. They have been sighted solitary, not so easily seen as they prefer to hunt for their prey in secluded areas. To find them you need to see intently near the water bodies like lakes, backwaters and wet fields. The feathers are purple in color when seen from top with grey stripes on the neck and a lovely yellow underneath powerful long beak. Eyes are yellow while it has characteristically striped long slender neck which it recoils during flight. Long legs and grey-purple feathers help identify the bird. If it is disturbed or if it senses threat this large bird immediately croaks and takes off to safer distance.

The adults are comparable in size to the Grey Herons and larger Egrets. They fly close to the ground or water short distances looking for the food and spends considerable time walking amidst tall grass spotting frogs and other food.

They fly to the top branches of the trees to keep safe from predators.

This image was captured using the Nikon D7000 camera, 300 mm lense, at the Mandovi river backwaters near Panjim, Goa

Friday, January 30, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, January 30, 2015

Satyagraha Ashram – Where the Mahatma was born


Book shop Gandhi Vidyapeeth
Bookshop at Gujarat Vidyapeeth

We know Mohan Das Karam Chand Gandhi was born in Porbandar, but it is in Ahmedbad that Mahatma Gandhi was born when he came back from Africa in 1915 and setup an Ashram in the city. A lovely Bungalow was gifted to him by Barrister Jivanlal Desai in Kochrab locality of the city that is now known as Satyagraha Ashram. Gandhi and his wife Kasturba lived in this double storey ashram for 2 years till 1917 when the better-known Sabarmati Ashram came up on the banks of Sabarmati. A bit of Internet research tells me that Gandhi chose Ahmedabad to be his base as here he could speak Gujarati – his mother tongue, it was centre for handlooms so his charkha movement would get a good start and third it was home to a lot of wealthy people whom he expected to contribute to freedom struggle. In 1917, a plague epidemic played a role in ashram being moved out of Kochrab.

mahatma gandhi portrait

Sabarmati Ashram is what we know as Gandhi Ashram, but it was a discovery to know that the first Gandhi Ashram in Ahmedabad was located in Kochrab. My young friend Tushar took me to this Ashram, and even though he knows the city quite well, it took us a few turns here and there to reach the Ashram. From a distance it looks like an old British era bungalow in pale yellow. In the corner, there is a shop, selling handloom and gramodyoga products. Unlike Sabarmati Ashram, there were no tourists here.

Gandhi Ashram Kochrab Ahmedabad
Satyagraha Ashram Kochrab Ahmedabad

We enter the ashram and see no one around. On the right is a large ground with a platform and a board tells us that it used to be the prayer ground. On the left is the bungalow and behind the bungalow are few rooms in a straight line. We reluctantly open the doors of the Bungalow and see well maintained rooms that were used by Mr & Mrs Gandhi. Walls have writings of Gandhi from his book Hind Swaraj, large portraits of people who influenced him like Tagore, pictures of all ashrams across the state and a brief story on them. Glass panels of the cupboards have pictures of the couple besides large portraits of theirs on walls. There are small caricatured panels depicting various activities of Gandhi. Gandhi’s room has his trademark writing desk on the floor with white mattress and a simple wooden charkha by the side. In many respects the rooms were very similar to Sabaramati Ashram.

Gandhi Ashram Kochrab Ahmedabad
Mahatma Gandhi's room at Satyagraha Ashram Kochrab Ahmedabad
We came out and met a caretaker who showed us the rooms behind the main building that were supposed to be the kitchen, store room and toilet for the house. Our modern mind finds it difficult to understand that a fairly large bungalow will not have a toilet inside but then we realize mindsets were different a century ago. In the front corridor an old gentleman is reading the newspaper and he tells us about the library on the first floor. Now, I am excited and want to go upstairs as soon as possible. But Alas, an old Gandhian who has the keys refuses to let me. I request him, cajole him but he says it is only open to the members of the society. I tell him I only want to see the library and he says – go to the university and see the books there. How do I explain him what a library means to me? Both Tushar and me tried all possible ways to convince him, but he remained adamant that only members of the society have access to the library and I was thinking – what would have Gandhi thought of this stance – that no one can look at his library but a bunch of self-proclaimed Gandhians.

Gandhi Ashram Kochrab Ahmedabad

This Ashram is managed by Gujarat Vidyapeeth University – an institution that was set up by Gandhi in 1920 that is located almost next door to the Ashram. I went their to pick up a few books of Gandhi including a special edition of Hind Swaraj that has handwritten text by Gandhi in Gujarati along with Hindi & English translation on hand made paper. It was a lovely bookstore with books primarily from the independence movement era.

Gandhi Ashram Kochrab Ahmedabad


Some newspaper reports tell me that Gujarat tourism had plans to convert this ashram into a homestay where tourists can come and live like they would have during the days of Gandhi, following all the rules of the ashram. I am not sure if they should use this piece of heritage as a tourism product but this idea of Gandhian homestay is something that should be worked on – may be on a property that resembles the ashram. I think the ashram should be kept intact, as it is an important part of our history, but of course with an access to library upstairs.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Jeep Safari at Satpura National Park

Moonlit Denwa Backwaters
Moonlit Denwa Backwaters
Sipping steaming hot tea with views of Moon lit Denwa river backwaters is likely to make a great beginning for a day set aside for exploring nature at its best. Imagine soon you are going to cross over a kilometer of brimming backwaters on a boat before sunrise, under the watchful moon, to explore Satpura national park on morning jeep safari starting sharp at 6 AM. Some of the best sunrise moments nature lovers cherish.
  

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, January 25, 2015

Sunday Shot: Slender Billed Gull

Slender billed Gull bird in-flight, Goa
Slender Billed Gull, Goa
Flocks of these gulls look like a sprinkling of shiny silver particles in the sky from a distance, reflecting the sunshine. They can be then seen splitting into smaller groups scanning the surface of lakes and estuaries for the food. They usually can be seen skimming the food from the surface of water, they do not dive into the water. The typical characteristics are a divinely white colored body, greyish feathers of unique desigand a black beak. 

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Walk around Fontainhas – Panjim

Painted wall at Fontainhas
What makes Goa distinct from rest of India is that Portuguese culture has seeped in deep and become an integral part of this small Riviera state. You can see the Portuguese influence in houses in remote villages, in food and in language. To enjoy this culture in a matter of hours there is no better place than to walk around Fontainhas area of Panjim, also know as Latin Quarters at times. This is a very small and absolutely walk friendly area where you go through the residential area, a few of which now work as guesthouses, hotels, restaurants, cafes, boutiques & art galleries. All of these offer a chance to sit back, relax and soak in the richness of the culture that is a microcosm of the culture of Goa. I have walked this area many times – as a tourist, as a resident of Panjim, at night, early morning and of course during the day. In December I walked again with the sole purpose of writing this post.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, January 18, 2015

Sunday Shot: Black Kite in-flight

Black Kite bird in-flight, Goa
Black Kite in-flight
We know it as a bird of prey, it is also called Black Kite, and it is a fairly common bird. It can be often seen in dozens, circling over the cities, garbage dumps, water bodies. In fact garbage dumps are the best places to locate them if you can stand the stench. You can find it competing with the Brahminy Kites and crows for the food. It adroitly drifts in the air with amazing display of deep knowledge it has of aerodynamics before it rests on top of a tree. It is best known for its sharp eye sight that lets it spot the food from great heights.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, January 16, 2015

Modes of Narration in Buddhist Art


Stone sculptures began in India about 2200 years ago with the depiction of Buddhist stories that we know as Jataka Tales. Before this the art must have existed but on perishable material like wood that has not survived the times. Earliest stone sculptures are attributed to the sites of Barhut near Jabalpur in MP and Sannati-Kanganahalli near Gulbarga in Karnataka, quickly followed by many sites spread all across Indian subcontinent.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Where the Walls tell stories – Tambekar Wada, Vadodara

Tambekar Wada, Vadodara

Once upon a time our walls were our art workshops, our prized possessions and all that we cherished was painted on them. We lived in the middle of those designs that either pleased us or kept reminding us of certain people or events. Alas! Not many of these places have survived the test of time. So when we heard about Tambekar wada – the haveli of Vithal Khanderao Tambekar or Bhau Tambekar - erstwhile Divan of State of Baroda that still had these paintings left, we rushed to the old city to have a look at them – almost with urgency as if they are going to vanish if we are not fast enough. After meandering many streets we finally stand in front of a rather plain looking tall building that has an ASI board outside. We step into the office and a very graceful Jamna Ben smiles and says she will show us the paintings and then looks at us to see if we can climb the steep staircases or not before guiding us there. The staircase is very steep with relatively high steps.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, January 11, 2015

Sunday Shot: Brahminy Kite in-flight

Birds in-flight, Goa
Brahminy Kite in-flight, Goa
Brahminy Kite, a bird of prey, distinct from other kites with its white head and breast. It is usually seen flying over the water bodies, be it lakes, rivers, estuaries. It is a common bird when you look up, circling over to spot its prey and being chased by crows when in their domain.


Friday, January 09, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, January 09, 2015

Pranburi Forest Park, Thailand


Walkway in Pranburi Forest Park
Walkway at Pranburi Forest Park
Pranburi Forest Park lies a bit to the south of beach town of Hua Hin in Thailand. Full of mangroves and marine life, this is perfect place to take a peaceful walk in the mangrove forests, may be plant a few trees and to see some live crabs.

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, January 06, 2015

8 Reasons to visit Anjuna Flea Market in Goa


Anjuna Flea Market, Goa
Flea market at Anjuna beach is a symbolic remnant of the days of the Hippies in North Goa. When they would sell everything they had to buy a ticket back home. Grown manifold now, it is no longer a flea market – but still a colorful Indian Bazaar that comes up every Wednesday during the season i.e. Oct to April.  It is a huge market and you can spend your whole day looking at things and buying some. My list of why you should go to Anjuna Flea market:

Sunday, January 04, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, January 04, 2015

Sunday Shot: White-throated Kingfisher

Kingfisher bird in-flight
White-throated Kingfisher in-flight, Goa
Diving in the still waters of Malim jetty, this in-flight white-throated Kingfisher managed to catch a fish and flew back to the nearby mangroves to relish. Malim jetty located on the northern side of Mandovi river, by the side of the bridges connecting Panjim and Porvorim, is a marketing jetty exclusively for fishermen. 


Thursday, January 01, 2015

Anuradha Goyal
Thursday, January 01, 2015

Looking Back at 2014




2014 for me was a year of receiving or of getting back. It was a year of milestones and a year that I would cherish for a long time to come.

My debut book The MouseCharmers – Digital Pioneers of India came out in April 2014. I had spent all of 2013 working on this book and happy that the book has been well received.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Review: WelcomHotel, Vadodara



Tired after exploring various things in Vadodara, we reached WelcomHotel where we were staying. As we stepped into the lobby, soothing music relaxed our nerves and instead of rushing to our room, we sat in the lobby and started enjoying the live music being played by two gentlemen sitting on the floor. One of them had 30 odd big and small bowls filled with water and by playing with bamboo sticks he was producing music – technically this setup is called Jal Tarang. A tabla player gave company to Sh Suryakant who was playing with water. I was like a child when I saw him adjusting water in his bowls after every song for the next Raga that he would play. Here is a rendition of Gandhi Ji’s favorite bhajan Vaishnav Jan to tene kahiye re…

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, December 28, 2014

Sunday Shot - Little Egret in-flight

Little Egret bird in-flight, Goa
Little Egret in-flight, Goa

Little Egret (Egretta Garzetta Garzetta) is a small white heron, also called yellow-footed egret. You may notice that the foot is yellow in color. They are commonly seen near water bodies and fields. This one was flying, as usual with retracted neck, across the paddy fields of Taleigao, Goa.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, December 26, 2014

Utopia Dystopia Goa Week III



An iron frame in the shape of the tree stood tall, watching all of us create things that would eventually belong to it. For the first three days it saw junk all around as most of us struggled to create something out of it.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Rachol Seminary, Rachol, Goa



When I was told about this seminary and the fact that it is the oldest seminary in Asia, I had no clue what a seminary is – but thanks to Google I learnt that it is the place where priests in Christian tradition are trained. So to tick off another first, I made my first visit to Rachol Seminary in Rachol, South Goa.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, December 21, 2014

Sunday Shot - Caesar Weed Flower

Indian Wild flower Caesar Weed, Goa
Caesar Weed Flower, Goa

Caesar Weed Flower grows in abundance on the roadsides just after the monsoons in the villages of Goa. These beautiful pink flowers of the weed naturally attract the attention of the passers by. The weed's botanical name is Urena lobata, also called Congo jute and in Hindi Bachita, Unga and Lapetua. 


Friday, December 19, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, December 19, 2014

Utopia Dystopia Goa Week II


Last week we conceptualized the tree, we brainstormed, we drew our ideas on paper and we thought through how we want our areas to look. This week we had to dirty our hands literally. We had to give shape to our ideas. I would remember this week as patience building time. Working with new mediums required a lot of patience – as you have to allow time for things to take shape, have to work patiently on the details and then hope & pray that your hard work does not go waste.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Glory of Gaikwads – Laxmi Vilas Palace, Vadodara


Laxmi Vilas Palace is the first thing that you are told to see when you visit Vadodara. We saw its precints many times while driving across the city. Its imposing arched gates stand next to a busy road. The palace compound is so huge that you have to access different sites like the Fatesh Singh Museum and the Laxmi Vilas Palace through different gates. To give you an idea, it houses a well-maintained golf course and a cricket ground besides sprawling lawns where one can see hoards of peacocks roaming around and tons of birds chirping on the trees.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, December 14, 2014

Sunday Shot - Common Kingfisher

Kingfisher bird portrait
Common Kingfisher, Goa
Perched atop an under construction site iron rod, this common Kingfisher was trying to spot the fish in a stagnant water body created by rainwater. Kingfisher can spot its food i.e. fish in still water and can dive into water to shallow depth only.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, December 12, 2014

Utopia Dystopia in Goa, Week 1


Goa University is very generous – it opens up its visiting faculty programs to general public and that too absolutely free of cost. Attending some of these programs have been my best blessing in Goa. This December, I signed up for a program that was curiously called ‘Utopia Dystopia Goa’ and involved working with the renowned artist Orijit Sen to create a public installation using various materials – right from terracotta to waste material. Sounds interesting - but beyond that I had no clue and no experience whatsoever of working with artists – forget about being one myself. It was a challenge and needed a commitment of 3 weeks of time, but I decided to go ahead and get involved. Only thing I was sure of was some learning everyday because when you start from Zero, you can only add to it. And around the middle of the project I can say that I am damn happy that I joined it and here is sharing my first week learnings with you.

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Satara – City of Seven Stars


Seven hills defining the boundaries of this small town in Maharashtra give it its name – Satara. Metaphorically, it was also the capital city of Marathas for a long time making it a star among the cities of the state. 

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, December 07, 2014

Sunday Shot - Fishing Boat

Sunset seascape with a fishing boat, Goa
Fishing Boat in the seas, Goa
Fishing boat, sailing in the Arabian Sea in the evening as the sun goes down is an enchanting sight. Do not miss the backdrop of stationed ships at the golden sunset hours of photography.

Friday, December 05, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, December 05, 2014

Review: Denwa Backwater Escape, Satpura National Park

Denwa Backwaters Escape resort at Satpura National Park

Located right at the banks of backwaters of Denwa river, formed by the dam water is this beautiful luxury lodge that allows you to spend some time at the edge of the forest.  We were invited by Pugdundee Safaris to visit the Satpura National Park and cannot thank them enough for giving us an opportunity to be in the vicinity of the national park and see so many birds and animals in their natural habitat – including the sighting of sloth bears at night.

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Ahmedabad Heritage Walk

Swaminarayan Temple at Kalupur 
Like Delhi and Hyderabad, Ahmedabad also has an old city at its core that still remains to an extent in a time warp. Visiting these old cores takes you back in time when these cities were born and from where their character emerged. These areas have a distinct identity that they exude. In Ahmedabad it is the Pols of the old city that give the city its unique character – that of communities living independently and yet intertwined with others. Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation conducts a heritage walk every day in the old parts of the city and since they have been doing it for many years now – they are the best at it. I had taken this walk about 10 years back and repeated it again this year and thoroughly enjoyed it both times.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, November 30, 2014

Sunday Shot - Oriental Forget-me-not Butterfly

Butterflies of India, Goa
Oriental Forget-me-not Butterfly
At first thought this beautiful purple-blue-silver colored one looked like an insect. Some google search indicates it to be a butterfly called Oriental Forget-me-not (Catochrysops strabo strabo). Look carefully and you would see hues of many colors swiftly navigating from one color to another.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, November 28, 2014

Go Goa XX - Evenings at Colva Beach


Sunset at Colva Beach, Goa
Colva beach, Goa 

Colva beach is one of the most popular beach of south Goa. It is located few kilometers south of Dabolim Airport and close to the commercial hub of Goa - Madgaon, that travelers know better as the railhead in Goa.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, November 25, 2014

5 Ways to Explore Forests of Satpura


Poet Bhawani Prasad Mishra described the Satpura forests as dense but sleepy. I think I agree with him, the forests are sleepy – full of vines and spiders but today may be there are not as many tigers as he saw. Earlier this month, we were invited by Pugdundee Safaris to stay at their lovely Denwa Backwater Escape resort on the banks of Denwa River, across which lies the Satpura National Park. For 3 days we shuttled between the resort and the forest, crossing the backwaters of Denwa and explored it in various – each with a uniqueness of its own. So let me share this Safari Menu that we savoured at Satpura.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, November 23, 2014

Sunday Shot: Indian Roller in-flight

India Roller bird in-flight, Satpura national park
Indian Roller in-flight

Indian Roller is one of the most colorful birds of India, and its colors are at the best when in-flight. Its Scientific Name is Coracias benghalensis and in India it is known as Neelkanth for the predominant blue color it carries. Found across the plains in India it is the state bird of Andhra PradeshTelanganaKarnataka and Odisha.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, November 21, 2014

Hua Hin – An elitist beach town


Hua Hin is located bang opposite the famous Pattaya beach, that is, if you could swim across the Gulf of Thailand in a straight line. In character too, the two towns stand on the opposite ends – while Pattaya is a hub for mass tourism, Hua Hin is where the nobility of Thailand lived in earlier times and today it’s being promoted by as a premium wedding and honeymoon destination. We were told that the King and Queen of Thailand also live in Hua Hin and not in Bangkok making it a living royal city.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Thursday, November 20, 2014

American Express & MakeMyTrip Launch a Co-branded Credit Card


Pic Courtesy American Express

American Express in partnership with MakeMyTrip - India’s leading online travel portal has launched a new credit card that offers many benefits for the users of the portal ensuring many benefits and rewards for those who travel frequently and do all their travel booking through MakeMyTrip portal. Some highlights include include:

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Colorful furniture of Sankheda



Sankheda is a small village located about 45 kms South-East of Vadodara. This is a usual Gujarati / Indian village but for the fact that many families here produce a certain type of wooden furniture that is made only here. Of course it goes by the name Sankheda woodwork – and its distinction lies in the use of lacquer for giving it a shining finish. Well, lacquer is no longer used and has been commonly replaced by the enamel paint that is not only easier to work with but has given the artisans here a larger range of colors and color combinations to work on.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, November 16, 2014

Sunday Shot - Indian Jezebel Butterfly

Indian Jezebel butterfly on Lantana flower, Goa
Indian Jezebel Butterfly 


Indian Jezebel Butterfly also known as common Jezebel, scientific name Delias eucharis, sucking the juice of wildly growing Lantana Flower. It is one of the most common butterflies seen in India. Red, Yellow, Black and White colors form beautiful and distinctive patterns on the wings of the butterfly.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, November 14, 2014

Review: Baker's Studio, Baga, Goa


Couple of weeks back, some of us Goa bloggers were invited by Baker's studio for lunch. They are located in the famous Tito's Lane in Baga amidst an area that belongs to the resident tourists of Goa. Most of us who live in Goa hardly visit this area, so it was a nice change to visit this area and feel the city as tourists see it.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Rendezvous with Indus Valley Civilization at Lothal



Once upon a time life in Indian subcontinent flourished on the banks of River Saraswati. Ancient urban centers with well-planned cities are still being discovered in and around Saraswati and its tributaries for more than a century now. Every site adds to the mystique and scale of the civilization. At the southern end of this civilization in gulf of Khambat, in the village called Lothal lies a dockyard that was used to trade through the sea routes with other civilizations.

Sunday, November 09, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, November 09, 2014

Sunday Shot - Cattle Egret in-flight

Cattle Egret bird in-flight, Goa
Cattle Egret in-flight
Cattle Egret can be spotted in the paddy fields, water bodies and true to their names- near the cattle, specially the buffaloes very commonly across India. 

Friday, November 07, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, November 07, 2014

Review: Divan’s Bungalow Ahmedabad


Whenever I plan the trip, there is an attempt to see if I can stay in the older parts of the city – as I have always lived in new areas of most cities I lived in. There is also a desire to live like the locals and that is why I champion the cause of couchsurfing so much. Lately I have seen the concept of home stays where you stay with a local family. And then there is Neemrana that offers you an experience of being an elite in the destination that you are visiting.

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Pavagadh Hill, Gujarat



Champaner & Pavagardh are the words – I always heard together. It was one of the few UNESCO world heritage sites of India that I had not visited, so I planned my Gujarat trip to cover this and the newly included Rani ki Vav. It is only when I reached the site, some 45 kms from Vadodara, I realized that Champaner is the village below the Pavagadh hill. The monuments are of course scattered all over the hill, on the foothill and on top of the hill. You can hear and read as many myths, legends and stories about this place as the number of sources you access.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, November 02, 2014

Sunday Shot: Indian Pond Heron


Pond Heron bird in-flight, Goa
Indian Pond Heron in-flight
One of the most common birds of India, the Pond Heron can be spotted just around any water body or even fields.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, October 31, 2014

Go Goa XXIII Naval Aviation Museum, Goa



Tucked away in a corner, near Bogmalo beach at Vasco, is this unique museum dedicated to flying machines of the naval forces. I am not an army / military / war person. I often skip the armory galleries in museums, but this one promised to be more of a display of technology and more importantly an introduction to a subject I knew nothing about.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Sun Temple Modhera or मोधेरा का सुर्य मंदिर


कर्क रेखा पे
अपने ईष्ट देव की और
मुहँ बाये कमल पट्ट पे खड़ा 
मोधेरा का सुर्य मंदिर

पुष्कारणी में माला से
गूँथे हैं छोटे बड़े मंदिर
जिनकी छवि से हैं खेलते
जल जन्तु कच्छ और मच्छ

सभा मंडप है समेटे
कथाएँ राम और कृष्ण की
जन्म से मृत्यु की यात्रा
मधी है बाहिरी वर्ग पे

कोख रहित गर्भ गृह
कथा कहता प्रहारों की
जो खंडित तो कर गये, पर
क्षीण ना कर पाए तेज को

आठों दिशाओं में
दिशा देवो का वास है
शिलाओं में समाया
संगीत नृत्य उल्हास है

पुष्पावती है जिसे सहलाती
अपनी जल धार से
सूर्य जैसे हो प्रहरी
अपने इस प्रतिबिंब का 

A Rough translation....

On the Tropic of Cancer
Looking towards its deity
On the inverted lotus
Stands the Sun Temple of Modhera

In the Stepwell, stung like pearl string
are big and small 108 temples
With whose shadow 
play the fish and turtle

Assembly hall treasures 
stories of Rama & Krishna
Journey from birth to death
is carved on outer periphery

Womb-less sanctum tells
story of the invasions
that left it in ruins, but
could not diminish its aura

In the eight directions sit
guardian deities of each direction
each stone celebrates life
through music and dance

Pushpavati nurtures it
with its waters
The sun looks over it
its own reflection on earth.


PS: After a long time was inspired to express myself in poetry rather than usual prose. Tell me how you liked the change. 

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Sunday, October 26, 2014

Sunday Shot: Rose Ringed Parakeet


Parakeet in-flight with golden grains of paddy, Goa
Rose Ringed Parakeet
Its harvest season in Goa. In the paddy fields of Taleigao near our house, this Rose Ringed Parakeet picks up a strand of the crop from the fields as if saying - this is my share of the booty.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Friday, October 24, 2014

Sahastralinga Talav, Patan, Gujarat



Just behind the gorgeous Rani ki Vav lies the Sahastralinga Talav – a structure if intact would have been equally if not more gorgeous. It pre-dates the Rani ki Vava and was another water management structure on the banks of river Saraswati and drew water from one of its canals and not only stored it but also did the water filtering / cleaning process.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Anuradha Goyal
Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Andhra Avdentures XVII : Yadgirigutta – Abode of Narsimha Swamy


On the outskirts of Hyderabad lie many small gems to be explored.  Yadgirigutta is one of them and I visited it almost towards the end of my stay in Hyderabad along with Kolanpak and Bhongir.

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