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Old 1st April 2009, 23:30   #1
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Lightbulb 'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...

There was a wedding in the family and plans were made for a trip to Chennai. Not being much of a crowd person, I did have second thoughts about joining in for the trip... but the temptation of a long drive on the GQ was too irresistible and I opted in. We left on the morning of 21st March and returned back to Bangalore late evening on 23rd March 09.
Route planning was not a problem, just head to Hosur road and drive to Chennai!

Road taken: Hosur Road (GQ)
Total distance on the ODO: 814kms Start to Stop. (Blr-Chn-Kanchi-Blr & some driving inside Bangalore, Chennai & Kanchipuram)

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Not much of a sight-seeing was planned or done during the trip, just a brief visit to the Kapaleeshwara temple in Chennai and a stop over at the Varadaraja Perumal temple in Kanchipuram on the way back.

Started from Airport road at around 6.00am on 21st March...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-1.jpg


Picked up my in-laws from Malleshwaram and stopped over at NKB (New Krishna Bhavan) for a quick breakfast. This is one of the oldest restaurants in Malleshwaram and probably serves the best button idli's I have ever tasted...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-2.jpg


You should also try the NKB 'Unusuals'! Especially the Mandya Ragi Dosa, the Mangalore Neer Dosa etc...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-3.jpg


NH-7 (Hosur road) is in a bad condition on a few stretches after the Infosys campus, but eventually you hit the out-skirts of the city and it is a pleasure to drive after that...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-4.jpg


Pit-stop for a bio-break and coffee after Hosur. There is a Adyar Anand Bhavan outlet in this gas station...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-5.jpg


The Krishnagiri fort. Added this to my to-do list; must visit this place sometime in the future to explore the fort. This fort was originally constructed by the Vijayanagara kings and was once under the control of Tipu Sultan. Need to find out if there are any significant monuments, 'must see' places in and around the fort.

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-6.jpg


'The Rose Mobile' [As written on the bus :-)], you can also see a 'key-pad' below the round window...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-7.jpg


A sight that you might see quite so often on our highways...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-8.jpg


Goods carrier rickshaws!

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Reached Chennai in around 6 hours, freshened up and headed towards the Kapaleeshwara temple in the evening. The street next to the temple...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-10.jpg


The temple pushkarini...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-11.jpg


The Kapaleeshwara temple. The Kapaleeshwara Temple in Mylapore, Chennai has very ancient origins, apparently the original temple was submerged under the sea & the current temple structure was a later construction. There are several smaller temples inside the complex…

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-12.jpg


Painted gopuram...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-13.jpg


Finished darshan, had the prasadam which is served in very generous quantities at this temple. There was also a Bharatnatyam performance going on in the mandapam in the complex. Spent some time there and headed out. A night-shot of the pushkarini...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-14.jpg


This shop is apparently famous as a one-stop-shop for all your pooja needs...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-15.jpg


Another shop on the street in front of the temple. We picked up a brass Ganesha here...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-16.jpg


They also had a good collection of Tanjore paintings...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-17.jpg


Reached the wedding hall a little early the next morning. Saw these interesting posters on the walls. Sorry, cant tell you what they mean since I cannot read Tamil. I suppose they talk about the rituals that are part of a typical south Indian wedding...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-18.jpg

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'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-26.jpg


Contd...
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Old 1st April 2009, 23:51   #2
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Quote:
The Krishnagiri fort. Added this to my to-do list; must visit this place sometime in the future to explore the fort. This fort was originally constructed by the Vijayanagara kings and was once under the control of Tipu Sultan. Need to find out if there are any significant monuments, 'must see' places in and around the fort.


That is news for me! As far as I know, there's no fort on any mountain in Krishnagiri! There's only one mountain which has stairs and it only has a dargah! (accessible from Old-Pet!)

Where exactly did you spot this?
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Old 1st April 2009, 23:52   #3
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Lightbulb Chennai ahead...

The groom arrived and there were several rituals throughout the day...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-27.jpg


There was a cultural program in the evening, which slowly evolved into a talent show. Several kids and some ladies went up onto to the stage to sing classical / semi-classical songs...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-28.jpg


The actual wedding muhurtam was early next morning, finished the function and headed back towards Bangalore. On the way we took a diversion towards Kanchipuram to make a quick visit to the Varadaraja perumal temple. First view of Kanchipuram...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-29.jpg


The Varadaraja perumal temple gopuram. It is an ancient temple complex spread over an area of more than 20 acres, originally built by the Cholas in 1053 and subsequent additions were made by others.

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-30.jpg


We spent about an hour inside the temple...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-31.jpg


This is a 100 pillared mandapam with some elaborate carvings...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-32.jpg

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-33.jpg


View of the pushkarini from the mandapam. I read somewhere that a special wooden idol is kept underwater in this pushkarini and is taken out once every 40 years for darshan. The next viewing will be in 2019...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-34.jpg


More pics...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-35.jpg

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-37.jpg

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-38.jpg

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Remnants of some old paintings on the ceiling of one of the structures inside the temple. The natural colors do not fade so easily and can last for centuries with some basic maintenance...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-40.jpg


An intricately carved pillar...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-41.jpg


The stairs that lead up to the golden and silver lizards on the ceiling of the temple. Touching the lizards is supposed to wash away all your sins... and they charge Rs.2/- to let you touch them. Quite a cheap deal I must say ;-)

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-42.jpg


More pics from inside the temple courtyard...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-43.jpg

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-44.jpg


Got stuck behind this traffic jam in Kanchi for around 15 mins. The truck on the right got stuck on some roofing sheets sticking out of the house and the driver attempted to ease out the truck without pulling down the sheets...

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-45.jpg


The home stretch! It was around 10.00pm by the time we reached Blr, dropped off my in-laws and returned home.

'Xing'ing around ! - Ahoy! Chennai ahead...-46.jpg


On the whole, it was a great drive and a nice trip!

------------------------------------------------------------------
Where to next ?

Last edited by hotstuff : 2nd April 2009 at 00:03.
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Old 2nd April 2009, 00:18   #4
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Arrow Krishnagiri fort...

Quote:
Originally Posted by pulsar56 View Post


That is news for me! As far as I know, there's no fort on any mountain in Krishnagiri! There's only one mountain which has stairs and it only has a dargah! (accessible from Old-Pet!)

Where exactly did you spot this?
There is indeed a fort in Krishnagiri. See more pics of the fort on @agag's log.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...agiri-dam.html (Kalkunte, Chikka Tirupathi, and … Krishnagiri Dam!)

(There also seems to be another fort called 'Krishnagiri' in Gingee)

Last edited by hotstuff : 2nd April 2009 at 00:24.
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Old 2nd April 2009, 09:13   #5
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Great report and terrific pics again, hotstuff. What camera do you use? Some of the pics are exquisite.
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Old 2nd April 2009, 09:48   #6
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Nice report and well written with pictures. I also spotted 'The Rose Mobile' while coming from Chennai to Hosur last week. I thought it was a campaign by Vijay TV at first sight!!
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Old 2nd April 2009, 09:52   #7
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Hotstuff, wonderful pics and rare collection as well. We get to know a lot specially about temples and rituals through your pics. Excellent stuff.

Abhi
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Old 2nd April 2009, 10:19   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hotstuff View Post
Reached the wedding hall a little early the next morning. Saw these interesting posters on the walls. Sorry, cant tell you what they mean since I cannot read Tamil. I suppose they talk about the rituals that are part of a typical south Indian wedding...
Very Interesting and good thought

In a typical Tambram (Tamil Brahmin) wedding you go through all these rituals and the slokas are basically sanscrit slokas which are recited by the purohit and repeated by the groom (in most cases with only a murmur which faintly resembles the slokas). What the marraige hall has done is to put up the slokas in tamil and also explain what the slokas mean so that the entire set of rituals are understood and undertaken by the groom.

In my case the Purohit not only ensured that I repeated correctly what ever he recited and explained me what is the significance for all the rituals (though I may not remember all now) he also appealed to the entire gathering who had come to see the wedding not to shake hands with the bride & groom immediately after mangalsutra because thats the time when the groom holds the bride's hands for the first time and its not fair to leave it immediately.

If my memory serves correct I had to shake hands with my left hand because my right hand was holding my wife's hand... ditto for her as well. It was only after a good 15 minutes of ritual (I think after Saptapadhi) did I leave her hand
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Old 2nd April 2009, 12:25   #9
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@ hotstuff

Excellent write up and great pics ! Almost felt like being there on the drive myself ! Keep them coming...
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Old 3rd April 2009, 13:23   #10
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Smile Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pjay_in View Post
Great report and terrific pics again, hotstuff. What camera do you use? Some of the pics are exquisite.
- Thanks @pjay_in, I use a Panasonic Lumix FX01, it is a basic P&S camera, probably need to upgrade. But being an amateur I find that this one is serving the purpose quite well and has superb battery life.

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Nice report and well written with pictures. I also spotted 'The Rose Mobile' while coming from Chennai to Hosur last week. I thought it was a campaign by Vijay TV at first sight!!
- Thanks @mail4loys

Quote:
Originally Posted by akroy View Post
Hotstuff, wonderful pics and rare collection as well. We get to know a lot specially about temples and rituals through your pics. Excellent stuff.

Abhi
- Thanks Abhi.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pypkmsrikanth View Post
Very Interesting and good thought

In a typical Tambram (Tamil Brahmin) wedding you go through all these rituals and the slokas are basically sanscrit slokas which are recited by the purohit and repeated by the groom (in most cases with only a murmur which faintly resembles the slokas). What the marraige hall has done is to put up the slokas in tamil and also explain what the slokas mean so that the entire set of rituals are understood and undertaken by the groom.

In my case the Purohit not only ensured that I repeated correctly what ever he recited and explained me what is the significance for all the rituals (though I may not remember all now) he also appealed to the entire gathering who had come to see the wedding not to shake hands with the bride & groom immediately after mangalsutra because thats the time when the groom holds the bride's hands for the first time and its not fair to leave it immediately.

If my memory serves correct I had to shake hands with my left hand because my right hand was holding my wife's hand... ditto for her as well. It was only after a good 15 minutes of ritual (I think after Saptapadhi) did I leave her hand
- Thanks @pypkmsrikanth... and "in most cases with only a murmur which faintly resembles the slokas" , because I did that too!

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@ hotstuff

Excellent write up and great pics ! Almost felt like being there on the drive myself ! Keep them coming...
- Thanks @kannan666
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Old 3rd April 2009, 13:42   #11
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Nicely taken pictures hotstuff. And covering a wedding is first on T-BHP, I think.
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Old 3rd April 2009, 13:44   #12
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@hotstuff,
pics are nice.
at kanchi, you had mentioned the temple.
i also visited kanchi many times. visited temple of vishnu-vishnukanchi, shiva-shivkanchi,
godess kamakshi temple. out of those three, which temple you mentioned?

Quote:
@esteem lover--And covering a wedding is first on T-BHP, I think
normally crazy also covered wedding of his friend recently in unfinished travelogue.

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Old 3rd April 2009, 14:49   #13
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Hotstuff, nice stuff. ;-) . Very well written, to the point and loads of photos.
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Old 14th December 2009, 22:14   #14
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Hi Hotstuff,

Really You did not leave anything for others to write. The greatest among all is the meanings of the rituals of the marriage. If you could take some pain and give it in a separate thread like Meanings of Indian marriage in English, that will throw some light on the marriages. You have done a great job man.

Last edited by navan49 : 14th December 2009 at 22:15.
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Old 15th December 2009, 21:22   #15
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Very good travelogue. The temples in Tamilnadu are too good. Thanks for sharing.
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