Bangalore has a special kind of winter chill (if i may use the W word at all for this place) - it’s creepy. It literally ‘creeps’ inside your body, settles itself there nicely and then starts sending pangs inside your system, everyday. The same cool breeze & sun-less sky, which some weeks back made you scream “awesome mausam!!”, now make you cringe and tug your jacket a bit tighter. For some people, it manifests as a never-ending cold - you can’t decide whether you’re healthy or not. I guess i’m beginning to understand why some people can wear thick sweaters in Bangalore too - too many creepy winters accumulated.
Though last weekend, i crept outta its grasp and found myself on my way to a picnic some 150kms off Bangalore. I couldn’t keep my eyes off the Karnatakan landscape (magically enhanced due to the bewitched, overcast sky) and wasn’t really expecting much from the first place on the agenda - Shivasamudram Falls. My first glimpse of it evoked feelings similar to probably what Fernando de Berrio would have undergone when stumbling through the South American jungle he would have found himself in the company of Angel Falls. Shivasamudram Falls felt like another world from another time. The fact that i had to do a little bit of river crossing to reach it, added to the adventure. The Falls’ water was pleasantly cool and the water’s slaps felt like an aimless massage on my muscles. Though the slimy rocks did play spoilsport and didn’t really allow us to play free, everyone looked like a bunch of wild kids let loose after many days. Worth climbing down each step of the 80 stepped, stone set of stairs (not recommended for oldies or those with knee problems btw).
The other place, Talakad, was exactly the opposite of the Falls. We found ourselves plopped on baby-soft, seaside sand on the banks of Cauvery. Cauvery which was ever so gentle and placid, invited you to try all your wildest swimming stunts. The river was so shallow there, that the men giving rides in Coracles (the small round boats, inlaid with woven wooden strips, covered with plastic cover and then tar for waterproofing), also known as “tappas” locally, used only a long wooden stick to push the river’s floor and move the boat forward. No oars, no motors - mere pushing. Across the bank i could see a forest so beautifully ethereal that it seemed outta a storybook. I guess the clairvoyant sky added to it. Although it was just across the river, it felt like a land which no one touched or ventured into. Laden with secrets and camouflaged with fleeting pristinity…
Funnily enough, i found myself back into my cotton kurta sans a jacket/stole when i went back to office this monday. I guess i shed some of the creepy winters back there. I think i’ve found a way to de-creep myself from the Bangalorean chill! :D
The song tonight, is a song which has gripped me off late. Downloaded by a friend on my laptop, this song, “Eyes on fire” by Blue Foundation has a feel which is chilling yet sensuous. I bet you’ll be tempted to play atleast twice.