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Old 20th April 2014, 07:23   #1
M35
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Smile Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane

Prologue:

I work abroad for most part of the year. I try and fly back to where I belong, whenever I get at least a couple of weeks off from work. Is it that I am suffering from the "separation anxiety", even in mid- thirties? I do agree that even after about 12 years of stay abroad, I still have that feeling of "dying to go home".

This cambridge journal defines Nostalgia as a ‘forgotten’ psychological disorder
Nostalgia, a psychopathological condition affecting individuals who are uprooted, whose social contacts are fragmented, who are isolated and who feel totally frustrated and alienated, was first described in the 17th century and was a problem of considerable interest to physicians in the 18th and 19th centuries. by the 20th century it seemed to have disappeared, but reappeared under other labels.
Medical literature characterizes Nostalgia as deep despair, persistent agony, loneliness, depression and other associated negativities with no future hope of escape from the situation. Most of these traits can't be associated with me and I am not a pessimist too. May be, a milder term such as 'homesickness' is better suited, as I look towards future always optimistically and believe that this current state is just a temporary phase.


I do agree that there have been quite a few wistful thoughts haunting me, while being away from home. The root cause of this mental agony as I realise is, the lack of quality time behind the wheel. Absolutely no justice to my philosophy of "Live to Drive", thanks to T-BHP, for most part of the year.


My occasional official chauffeured commute in a Mercedes Viano or Honda CRV do provide me with some respite, but the nearly impossible task of acquiring a driving License here in China, has always been a deterrent to otherwise relatively easy job of accessing an SUV to drive on. There are plenty of them available in this part of the world, the largest car market in the world.


I know the permanent solution to this mental distress is to have regular visits back home, but my current work doesn't allow me anything more than two trips per year. For time being, let me live through memories of various road trips I underwent during my previous visits back home. Yes, please don't expect a Ladak or similar type which I am yet to make. It's more of a cumulative Photo-log of road trips/ places of interest in and around Kerala and a couple of other South Indian designations.

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-m35.jpg

Last edited by M35 : 20th April 2014 at 08:43.
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Old 20th April 2014, 08:12   #2
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Default re: Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane

My trustworthy partner, since July-2009 : Mahindra Scorpio SLE M-Hawk

This post is dedicated to my work horse, for standing tall throughout. This July, will be celebrating the 5th year of wonderful ownership.

Ownership thread: Here

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-befunky_befunky_befunky_dsc_0051malls.jpg.jpg
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Old 20th April 2014, 09:41   #3
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Links to a couple of T-logs of mine existing already.

The Kodai trip :

Quote:
After reaching home in Palakkad/Kerala,due to certain unexpected business cropping up, I was stuck there and many of the trips planned earlier didn’t materialize. But we did squeeze in a two day trip to Kodaikanal via Rajakkad [near Munnar] while visiting my relatives in Munnar and Alappuzha.
Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-kodai.jpg

Link: http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...odaikanal.html (On the road again – Off to Kodaikanal)

The Athirappilly -Valparai trip :

Quote:
It’s just about 30 km from here [Chalakkudy] to “Athirapally Falls”, one of the most spectacular scenic spots that I have explored so far. It’s shame that I never considered seriously to drive to this location until a couple of days ago, after which Athirapally has very deservingly become a must-watch experience and one of my favourite destinations.
Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-athirippilly.jpg

Link: http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...-valparai.html (Drive to the gorgeous Athirappilly Falls, via stunning Valparai)
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Old 20th April 2014, 10:33   #4
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June, 2013
Palakkad - Anand -Palakkad

Total Distance covered : approximately 4000km

It was the longest drive ever made so far.I love monsoons when nature is at its best. Nothing can be more fun than doing long trips in monsoons. With your family accompaying you, it simply becomes a life time experinece. I had a couple of days of personal work at Anand, Gujarat. The yearly family reunion was also pending. With my brother & family being based in Thane, the idea of taking my parents along to stay togther, even if for a few days turned out to be once in a life time experience.

The plan was to drop my parents at Thane on the second day by Lunch with my brother and head straight towards Anand via Surat.

The planning

Planning thread: http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/route-...d-gujarat.html (Palakkad [Kerala] to Anand [Gujarat])

Driving in rains requires the extra caustion. Since I knew it would be raining throught out, I had done some research to be on a safer side, prior to the trip. Got my vehicle a thorough preventive check up at A.S.S, the previous day.
  • Got the wiper blades, front and rear replaced to make sure a clean sweep
  • Got the suspension checked and changed Stabiliser bar bushes [front] as they had gotten harder- no compromise on the ride comfort
  • 4 wheel brakes cleaned and wheels aligned
  • Topped up fluids, changed engine oil + fuel & Oil filters

Got a detailed interior cleaning and an exterior polishing for the Beast, during the service. Just after reaching home from A.S.S, the previous day.

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-befunky_1.jpg.jpg


The execution

Quote:
Day 1:
Palakkad-Coimbatore by Pass[L&T]-Salem-NICE -Road-Tumkur-Chitradurga-Belgaum-Kohlapur.[covered in 16 hours].Bad stretch between Walayar and L&T by-Pass but beyond that very good roads all the way.

After having lunch at New Aggarwal Bhavan on Tumkur road[NH-4], headed towards Hubli and then Kohlapur.

Stayed in Hotel Ayodhya at Kohlapur. http://hotelayodhya.com/ Took a Delux room with two extra bed for 3100 INR+ tax. The priorities were comfortable AC room with dedicated and secured parking.
An early morning start got us to Saravana Bhavan near Salem for an early breakfast.
Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-s.bhavan-1.jpg

The beautiful NH-7 !
Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-nh7.jpg

Quote:
Day 2:
Kohlapur- Satara-Pune-Thane: Lunch at Bro's place, Thane -Surat-Vadodara-Anand.

Due to the ongoing work, lots of diversions and bumpy the stretch between Satara and Pune.Excellent 6-Lane road, mostly after Thane till Vadodara and beyond that the Vadodara-Ahmedabad Mahathma Gandhi Exp.way was the best in the entre trip.Took the exit at Anand.
Stayed in Anand athttp://www.lacasainn.in/ La casa In.

Excellent hotel[the best in the trip] with very good service.
Took its Diamond suit for two people for 2500 INR + tax per day.
It was a couple of days of hectic schedule at Anand after which got back to Thane. Had a wonderful stay at Thane with all of us having great fun for few days.

Next up - Panchgani-Mahabaleshwar-Wai !

Last edited by M35 : 20th April 2014 at 11:31.
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Old 20th April 2014, 11:49   #5
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Return:

While returning, we took a detour to Panchgani/Mahabaleshwar and spent two days there. It was raining through out, thus couldn’t "click" many. Most of the "Points" were invisible as well.But enjoyed the typical monsoon Panchgani/Mahabaleshwar weather.

Visiting Panchgani was very special.
I was based in Panchgani back in 1999-2002. We, me and my friend [now my wife] were blessed to have started our career there. With the new member on board, the Rider Bajaj Aspire thanks to the fresh air and invigorating climate, those four years did make one of the most wonderful and distinct portion of our life. Those days, we used to have relaxed rides on those curvaceous roads between Panchgani - Mahabaleshwar and Wai.

During monsoons, Panchgani-Mahabaleswar owns a very charm of its own. We still remember those wonderful moments when we breezed through those foggy, invisible and wet roads,to Sydney points to Parsi points to Table lands and some occasional drive down to Dom Dam via Wai.The Rider Aspire also witnessed the very best Raas Garba Dance at nights During Dasara.

The Rider Aspire handled all those roads extremely well and the sheer power and very good braking, thanks to those Discs, were confidence inspiring, the FE was very poor though. That gave us the confidence to take one of the very bold decisions taken in my early days – A two Day ride from Panchgani to Kerala via Mangalore on NH-17 on the Rider Aspire.

Last edited by M35 : 20th April 2014 at 12:24.
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Old 20th April 2014, 12:22   #6
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Coming back to the trip, we stayed in Hotel Mount View Executive at Panchgani on the first day for INR 5250 in an executive suite.Not so clean and not so impressive.
http://www.hotelmountview.co.in/executive.html

Wanted to stay at Ravine Hotel near Sydney Point,Panchgani, but there weren't any rooms available.

First view of Panchgani Hills, more specifically the ghat road from Wai !


Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-panchgani-1.jpg

Pictures below were taken at Harrison's Folly Point, Panchgani. It's a good view point with Panchgani on one side and Wai on the other.

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-harrison-3.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-harrison-6.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-harrson-4.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-harrison-5.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-panchgani.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-harrison.jpg

The not so inspiring ambience at the hotel and the beautiful weather pushed us out to hit the roads again and we headed towards Mahabaleshwar.

Last edited by M35 : 20th April 2014 at 13:36.
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Old 20th April 2014, 13:29   #7
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Mahabaleswar

Quote:
Soaring peaks, breathtaking valleys. Lush flora. Cool, crisp mountain air. This is Mahabaleshwar, Maharashtra’s most popular hill station, and once the summer capital of the Bombay Presidency during the British Raj.
Get to know more about Mahabaleshwar here:


Mahabaleshwar is known for its numerous sightseeing points, each providing a unique perspective of the majestic hill range. Some of the attractions include,
Lodwick Point
Arthur's Seat
Babington Point
Wilson Point
Kate's Point
Bombay Point (Sunset Point)
Elephant's head Point
Pratapgad Fort
We didn't want to miss the gorgeous Arthur's Seat point, but was disappointed to see the entire area completely engulfed in thick fog with no visibility. What we could make it was only the Elephant's Head point in the entire Mahabaleshwar outing. Once it started raining, we decided to head back to Panchgani for a well deserved rest.

A few shots taken at Elephant's Head point


Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-eh.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-chottu.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-eh-1.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-eh-2.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-eh-4.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-eh-5.jpg

Last edited by M35 : 20th April 2014 at 13:33.
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Old 20th April 2014, 15:41   #8
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Had a well deserved rest that night. The next day, went for a spin in Panchgani but rain was a deterrent. Didn’t want to miss the mighty Table Land though.

Table Land


Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-tl-1.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-tl-3.jpg

Wai

After having had a great vegetarian lunch [Thali], went back to hotel and checked out. The next destination was Wai and my Bro had booked their travel back to Thane in Neeta Volvo from Wai, that evening. We drove down to Wai and booked two deluxe rooms in Hotel Pearl. Very good rooms with excellent service at a budget rate.

http://www.tripadvisor.in/Hotels-g31...ra-Hotels.html

That afternoon spent some useful time around Dhom Dam. It was very much refreshing indeed.

Few pictures taken at Dhom Dam,Wai


Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-dam-2.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-dam-3.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-dam-4.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-dam-5.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-dam-6.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-dam-7.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-tl-4.jpg

The next day, we started our return journey at 5.15 am and reached home at Palakkad at 11.15 pm on the same day.

It was a quick but well planned out trip and could not have asked for more. We had some great time together, spending some quality time after a long gap.

That's all for time being.Thanks all for reading and shall come back soon with another story.

Last edited by M35 : 20th April 2014 at 15:43.
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Old 21st April 2014, 12:47   #9
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Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to Travelogues. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 21st April 2014, 20:13   #10
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Originally Posted by M35 View Post
That's all for time being.Thanks all for reading and shall come back soon with another story.
Looking forward! This community allows each of us to see through our teammates what we cannot see directly. These posts tell us about India. Keep it coming.
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Old 22nd April 2014, 11:30   #11
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Things you might get to see only on Indian roads, probably !

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-11.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-2.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-3.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-4.jpg
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Old 22nd April 2014, 11:57   #12
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Things you might get to see only on Indian roads, probably !
Indeed! I loved the one with the elephant. While born and brought up in India prepares one for such things - honestly - I had never seen an elephant being transferred.
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Old 24th April 2014, 13:02   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Traveller Nayak View Post
I had never seen an elephant being transferred.
Not very uncommon sight in Kerala though, unfortunately !

A couple of least explored locations around Munnar.
Poopara –Munnar : 31.5 km stretch
Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-poomunnnar-1.jpg

Gap road : about 13km from Munnar

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-gap-road.jpg

Anayirangal Dam : about 24km from munnar

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-anayirangal-1.jpg

Waterfalls near Aruvi Resort:

It’s about 7-8 kms from Rajakkad towards Kunchithanni near Thekkumkanam !

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-aruvi-2.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-aruvic3.jpg

Snapshot: Road-trips down memory lane-aruvi-1.jpg
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Old 24th April 2014, 13:07   #14
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Beautiful photographs there. And I must say a very nice combination of the greens and non-greens. Kerala and Maharashtra have a different perspective of greenery and but each one is beautiful and spell bound in itself. What is the camera, lens and Post Processing work flow?

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Old 24th April 2014, 14:34   #15
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What is the camera, lens and Post Processing work flow?
Camera: The basic workhorse, Nikon D3100
Lens: 18-55 mm kit + 55-300 mm zoom + 55 mm prime
Post processing : Light room 4.4
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