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Old 29th March 2010, 21:21   #166
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I crossed hubli and was almost near MK hubli. My daughter let's out her first tone of uneasiness. I knew I had 10 mins to pull over and prepare food for her. I needed a place with a plug to use the electric milk boiler. I didn't want to get off the highway.
Thankfully, round the corner, I saw so many trucks. I pulled in to one of the dhabas. I don't recollect the name. We didn't have dinner there. There was a small temple of Ganesha as well as Hanuman besides the dhaba. Quickly I requested them to use their sockets for 10 seconds. Presto her food was ready. We might have been 25 kms from Hubli. Another 20 mins or so. But still, I decided not to push. Already I did 200 kms more than what I do with my daughter in a day.
My daughter got very cranky and we had to wait till the boiled milk cooled down. I took her to the temple to keep her distracted. And was very delighted to see a huge doberman tied to the post. Such a pure breed near this god forsaken place where truckers visit was a surprise. My daughter was happy seeing a dog as big as me.
Anything with a tail is enough to keep her occupied for some time.
What was more astounding was a group of Ayyappa swamis making all kinds of barking sounds trying to irritate the poor dog.
I just didn't want the dog to get even and start barking as loud sounds frighten my daughter.
Thank god the only one's to bark that day was the Ayyappa swamis and the dog just kept much to itself and it's food.
We quickly fed our daughter and was soon off to Belgaum.
I drove right in to town to a hotel called Durga residency. It was bang opposite the Belgaum bus stop. We reached checked in to very good rooms (that costed us totally 650 bucks for two rooms (double ac and single ac).
The reception adorned a huge photo of Volcanic Star Ambareesh inaugurating the hotel. I didn't look further. Ambareesh is my great hero. Like Vijaykanth, Balayya, Suresh Gopi etc.
I left my daughter and wife at the room and we decided to go out for dinner. The restaurant near durga residency closed. Thankfully there were two ATMs just below.
I first had to hunt around a shop to get vim for washing the utensils. Then the sterilisation has to be done. Finally we had food at Kamath (I guess) nearby. I reached back to the room at 11 pm. After an hour and a half with all my daughters 6 feeding bottles, utensils, electric milk boiler etc, I got them all washed, sterilised packed.
Then watched some old masala movie starring (who else) ambareesh and flopped.
The next morning I have around 350 kms to drive home. I wanted to move out by 10 am so that we are home by 4 pm. That was the plan.
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Old 29th March 2010, 21:35   #167
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At least now you can do Hosur road to Tumkur road in about quarter of an hour with route around broken Bannerghatta road.

Yesterday I did Mysore road to Hosur road through NICE in 30 minutes flat without driving about 100.
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Old 29th March 2010, 21:50   #168
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The previous night I was rather irritated with the hotel staff asking me to park my vehicle to specifications listed by them as though it's an army tank laden with shells. Finally I got damn pissed off and drove it over some empty tubes they'd put there on the basement car park and stormed off the car to my room.
At times, hotel staff can be picky and hospitality would be the last thing on their mind.

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That's the parody of Nice.
Ha ha. NICE road being not so nice?

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Thank god the only one's to bark that day was the Ayyappa swamis and the dog just kept much to itself and it's food.
Looks like the dog has been to Sabarimala, and got the message of 'Tat tvam asi' better when compared to the other 'swamis' around there.

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After an hour and a half with all my daughters 6 feeding bottles, utensils, electric milk boiler etc, I got them all washed, sterilised packed.
Man, you got some patience. After a gruelling day's drive, doing all this. Salutes.
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Old 29th March 2010, 22:36   #169
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um. Can't we outsource all that washing/sterlizing stuff to wifey? I will take up the big responsibility of playing with the baby.

I'm going to try and sign a deal with my wife right away. I'll let you all know how it goes.
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Old 29th March 2010, 22:56   #170
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At times, hotel staff can be picky and hospitality would be the last thing on their mind.

Yeah. You don't ask a person who's weary driving over 10 hours to park a cm to the right and things like that. There were hardly 3 - 4 cars in the huge car park.

Ha ha. NICE road being not so nice?
Yeah. It's a misnomer.


Looks like the dog has been to Sabarimala, and got the message of 'Tat tvam asi' better when compared to the other 'swamis' around there.
Anyway, it's the time of the swamis. Never mess with them. Even the dog decided to keep off. You never know which one amongst them can be a Nithyananda.

Man, you got some patience. After a gruelling day's drive, doing all this. Salutes.
Actually, I did that only 25% of the trip. My wife used to do all that the rest of the 75% of the trip. It's a huge chore at the end of the day. Almost 2 hours go in to that.
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At least now you can do Hosur road to Tumkur road in about quarter of an hour with route around broken Bannerghatta road.

Yesterday I did Mysore road to Hosur road through NICE in 30 minutes flat without driving about 100.
Wow. That's great to hear. so the nice road is nice after all!
The next morning I got down from the room at 9 in the morning to load the things back to my car. Compared to the hotel in electronic city, Belgaum was an amazing experience. Durga residency people took very good care. They gave me prime parking slot, right next to the lobby! Rooms were very comfortable and the tariff was unbelievable.
My heart melted when I got down at 9 am and set eyes on my car! It was dusty after 600 kms of driving of which the village stretches through ranebennur was particulary devastating. But at 9 AM, my car was glistening as though it had a paint job! The watchman had given a thorough wash to my car. I asked him why? He said he liked my car a lot.
I tipped him a twenty. Could have tipped him more. But didn't have change. He graciously accepted my tip (must have been huge money in a place like Belgaum).
After loading all the things (takes a good 45 mins), we all went down to have breakfast.
10:30 am we were off from Belgaum.
My fuel gauge was nearing empty. No way will I be able to cross over. The last top up was in Hosur. 600 kms done after that. Fuel in Karnataka is damn costly.
So I hunted around for a BP bunk. There was a small detour due to some road work on NH4. So while driving on the service lane, I decided to pump in fuel for 500 bucks at the IOC bunk. Better to be safe than sorry.
with around 9 point some litres, I should be able to travel a good 150 kms from Belgaum.
That should get us well past Kolhapur. Back to the land of cheaper fuel.

Soon we were off on NH4 on the roads I love best (after NH7 stretch from Karur to Nellai).

Attached are photos of the great stretches of NH4.

Ghats or no ghats. NH4 rocks.
A trip close to heart - Pune to Tirunelveli-nh4-1.jpg

I keep my dash and screen squeaky clean too (@smartcat). This I specially owe the watchman at Durga residency, Belgaum
A trip close to heart - Pune to Tirunelveli-nh4-2.jpg

The reflection on the windscreen is that of Ganesha. He adorns my car Dash. But I really hate bikers without helmets on any roads.
A trip close to heart - Pune to Tirunelveli-nh4-3.jpg

The flowers are in full bloom. I love this stretch. The good thing about Karnataka state buses is that they don't hog your lane. And look at the gleam on my bonnet. Man, I didn't even take the name of the watchman who I tipped 20. should have given him a 100.
A trip close to heart - Pune to Tirunelveli-nh4-4.jpg

No. No photos of my speedometer. Nothing to prove there. But I loved the stretches which were empty as below. Still I keep to a respectable and safe 110.
A trip close to heart - Pune to Tirunelveli-nh4-5.jpg

Then some respite from the sun. It gets cloudy. Miles of empty stretches. I chug around the last lap. Searching for Maharashtra border. I have very less fuel in the tank.
A trip close to heart - Pune to Tirunelveli-nh4-6.jpg

Tawandi ghat. Earlier than planned. Skipping stop there as it's too early for lunch. But this convoy of army trucks attracts my attention. So I slow down to click photos. Next stop is refueling for me and my vehicle in Maharashtra.
A trip close to heart - Pune to Tirunelveli-nh4-7.jpg

Look who's walking! Tawandi ghat threw up a 1 hp quadrapod vehicle loaded with utensils, artifacts and a lady.
A trip close to heart - Pune to Tirunelveli-nh4-8.jpg

I trundled along. Finally entered Maharashtra. Heavy breakfast in Belgaum meant still not hungry. Daughter had her milk in car itself. In her car seat. So I kept going. Crossed Kolhapur. 20 days earlier, I bought bangles first time for my daughter in the Mahalakshmi temple. With those fresh memories, we were searching for BP bunk. I finally pulled in to one at Islampur. Refuelled to the brim.
The place didn't have any decent restaurant. So we continued. Thought it will be good to go over to Satara for lunch. But something caught my eye enroute.
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Old 29th March 2010, 23:20   #171
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I keep my dash and screen squeaky clean too (@smartcat).
hehe I agree!

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But I really hate bikers without helmets on any roads
I don't hate them, but I have a serious bikerphobia. If they are ahead of me, I fear they might fall down infront of my car. If they are behind me, I fear that they will slam into my car from behind.

So when I see a biker (with or without helmet), I step on the gas and flee!
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Old 29th March 2010, 23:28   #172
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um. Can't we outsource all that washing/sterlizing stuff to wifey? I will take up the big responsibility of playing with the baby.

I'm going to try and sign a deal with my wife right away. I'll let you all know how it goes.
@smartcat. That's the biggest help you can do to your wife. She'll do a thousand such things if you can handle the baby for 5 mins. Especially when it poops over your trousers. I did the easiest which involves 2 hours of work.
So before signing on the dotted line, be very careful what you will handle. My daughter looks so cute and cuddly in photos. She's difficult to handle. Her attention span is shorter than how quickly I can pull my hair apart.
Nowadays, babies are so agile that you'd require 4 pairs of hands to handle them.
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Old 30th March 2010, 00:30   #173
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Thank you for returning back. It took 22 days for us to read the continuation of "A trip Close to heart" (for us as well)

Its worth the wait. Continue the good work. Looking forward for you to continue the other threads as well(Mother of all treks.)

Hope that during your recent trip to Udupi you had collected back the old photos from your fathers place to share.(Iam Greedy)
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Old 30th March 2010, 02:05   #174
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One of the best travelogue i've read. good pics too.
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Old 30th March 2010, 06:28   #175
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it took me 2 hrs to read from page 1 till here... it was more like a story and i have already started to mail the links to my friends... i will remember this post for a while now... btw, this story is a hit 'cos of your princess!!
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Old 30th March 2010, 06:34   #176
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um. Can't we outsource all that washing/sterlizing stuff to wifey? I will take up the big responsibility of playing with the baby.

I'm going to try and sign a deal with my wife right away. I'll let you all know how it goes.
How did this go? Still alive? Quashed? All body parts in order?
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Old 30th March 2010, 08:12   #177
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@MX6 - now we're talking; keep the pace man, no more breaks. In all the above pics I see everyone driving/riding neat, is it that you posted such pics or does everyone drive/ride neat?
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Old 30th March 2010, 11:25   #178
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How did this go? Still alive? Quashed? All body parts in order?
Not too well, I'm afraid. I had to sleep on the couch yesterday night
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Old 30th March 2010, 21:02   #179
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Originally Posted by Driving_Dreams View Post
Thank you for returning back. It took 22 days for us to read the continuation of "A trip Close to heart" (for us as well)

Its worth the wait. Continue the good work. Looking forward for you to continue the other threads as well(Mother of all treks.)


Hope that during your recent trip to Udupi you had collected back the old photos from your fathers place to share.(Iam Greedy)
Thanks for the patient wait. Once I'm through with this I'll continue the trek one too.
I've not got the old photos. There's no point in getting them unless I buy a scanner. I've taken some photos of some of those photos though. Will upload when opportunity presents.

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Originally Posted by Reisender View Post
One of the best travelogue i've read. good pics too.
Thanks for your kind words Reisender.
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Originally Posted by klassics45 View Post
it took me 2 hrs to read from page 1 till here... it was more like a story and i have already started to mail the links to my friends... i will remember this post for a while now... btw, this story is a hit 'cos of your princess!!
Thanks. My princess is now nagging me to take her on another trip and put up another travelogue.

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How did this go? Still alive? Quashed? All body parts in order?
Lol. He's a smartcat. He has 9 lives.

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@MX6 - now we're talking; keep the pace man, no more breaks. In all the above pics I see everyone driving/riding neat, is it that you posted such pics or does everyone drive/ride neat?

Sure Aargee. Let me complete this so that I can enjoy the other travelogues for a while. Yes. People do drive neat on the GQ. All roads are not the mumbai pune expressway for morons to speed. Further, we have very less Indicabs plying on this route. Not like the minute by minute taxicabs that keep traversing the busy expressway corridor.

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Not too well, I'm afraid. I had to sleep on the couch yesterday night
Well, wait till your little one arrives. Atleast you SLEPT on the couch yesterday. You don't take good care of your little one, then sleeps something you will be constantly googling for.

Coming up next. Concluding part of the travelogue.
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Old 30th March 2010, 21:50   #180
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Not too well, I'm afraid. I had to sleep on the couch yesterday night
MX has answered for me. Next question you may want to ask:
Sleep? What is that?
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