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Old 2nd July 2010, 14:39   #16
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Oh OK

You need to update this urgently: http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/modifi...-esteem-2.html (Rally mod advice for Esteem)
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Old 2nd July 2010, 16:24   #17
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Found out a restaurant on the 2nd floor of a market complex, overlooking the crowd below. Ordered masala dosa and sat down on the terrace.

The Rath Yatra festival is just round the corner and the construction of the chariots are in full swing. The chariots are lined up in front of the restaurant and you can watch the flurry of activities going around it.

Of Gods and Lesser Mortals - Puri .... Reclaimed-dsc_0041-large.jpg
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The all-wheel drive system
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The chassis
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Some more joins the crowd..
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Old 3rd July 2010, 11:29   #18
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The restaurant offered a nice place to click some more shots at the people down below and that of the temple.

The bangle seller
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Vermillion
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The bathing deck
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The sculptures at the top of the temple that normally do not come to view
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Old 3rd July 2010, 14:41   #19
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Excellent stills (and caption) from a place which, especially during the festival periods, is seething with waves of humanity much like the sea. A fresh look at Puri indeed.
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Old 5th July 2010, 11:19   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
Excellent stills (and caption) from a place which, especially during the festival periods, is seething with waves of humanity much like the sea. A fresh look at Puri indeed.
Exactly my feelings, Saurabh Da. Puri, after all, is not about us urban yuppies turning up in our flashy cars and spending time at the beach. It is about the thousands of commoners who travel in hoardes in buses and trains, get treated like cattle at the temple - only to catch a glimpse of the almighty god who will rid them of their troubles. It is the faith, more than anything else, that makes Puri what it is.

You have managed to capture the true essence of Puri in these photos, especially this one:

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Can't wait to see more.
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Old 5th July 2010, 19:17   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
Excellent stills (and caption) from a place which, especially during the festival periods, is seething with waves of humanity much like the sea. A fresh look at Puri indeed.
Thanks SS da.

Quote:
Originally Posted by predatorwheelz View Post
Exactly my feelings, Saurabh Da. Puri, after all, is not about us urban yuppies turning up in our flashy cars and spending time at the beach. It is about the thousands of commoners who travel in hoardes in buses and trains, get treated like cattle at the temple - only to catch a glimpse of the almighty god who will rid them of their troubles. It is the faith, more than anything else, that makes Puri what it is.
Can't agree more with you and SS da. Puri is like a next door destination for us, but we keep going there again and again. And every time I go, I discover something new. Its indeed a sea of humanity. I feel overwhelmed seeing the hardships most people take, to make this pilgrimage.
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Old 5th July 2010, 19:48   #22
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It was time for us to get down from the terrace of the restaurant and make our way back to the hotel.

BTW, this restaurant runs a special facility during Rath Yatra. Being located on the main road in front of the temple, the 'raths' pass directly in front of the restaurant. They run a special package which offers viewing from the terrace and include food as well. You can stay there as long as you want. The charges are 1400/- per person. Booking starts 3 months in advance and its full house for this year. If any of you are interested, please let me know, I can share the contact details.

Anyway, as we walked across the main entrance to catch a rickshaw, we passed by those ubiquitous sweet shops selling the famous sweets of Puri, locally called 'Khaja'.

The sweet shops
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A little girl wondering if she is grown up enough..
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The road taking you out of the temple area towards the hotels have been closed to all vehicular traffic. We had to take a different route that gave me a glimpse of the area surrounding the temple.

The stream of people making their way inside the temple through the main entrance
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A CCTV camera keeping a close watch on the people entering the temple
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The security personnel chatting away
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Like other old pilgrimage cities like Varanasi and Gaya, Puri also has a very interesting life that revolves around the temple and the priests that serve the temple and the deity. These priests, known as 'Pandas', stay in houses situated in the maze of lanes and bylanes that surrounds the temple.

The rickshaw making its way through the narrow lanes. At times these are just wide enough for a rickshaw to pass.
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Typically, these houses are perched high from the road, comes with a terrace in front and a narrow staircase leading to the rooms inside. In older days, pilgrims were assiciated with these 'Pandas' and would come to Puri and stay at their houses, in exchange of some donations. Obviously, there were not so many hotels and the staying options were restricted to these houses and ashrams that dot the narrow lanes.

A typical house of the 'pandas'
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Contemplating..
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Old 5th July 2010, 20:05   #23
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Hi Saurabh

i liked your simple style of naration and the photographs.
Even though since 1989, i have watched Jatra at Puri on doordarshan and have been facinated by the wide eye of the lord, i have never been to the place.

want to make it there some day, if possible in my car, but not during the festival or jatra.

thanks, for sharing.
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Old 5th July 2010, 20:23   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StarVegabond View Post
i liked your simple style of naration and the photographs.
Even though since 1989, i have watched Jatra at Puri on doordarshan and have been facinated by the wide eye of the lord, i have never been to the place.

want to make it there some day, if possible in my car, but not during the festival or jatra.

thanks, for sharing.
Thanks SV. Puri, during the festivals, transforms itself into a completely different place. At other times, its just another beach town.
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Old 6th July 2010, 10:26   #25
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During the 'Snana Yatra' festival, the deities are dressed up in flowers and puts on a special appearance, that of Ganesha. Due to this dress, the Lord is said to be a Gajapati, on this day. With the hope of catching a glimpse of this rare sight, we decided to go back to the temple area in the evening.

The crowd has become thicker and the platform on which the deities sat, were choc-a-block with people. I carried the tripod with me, but, there was absolutely no space to put it up. After trying hopelessly, I took some handheld shots of the people. Sorry for the poor quality of pics.

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Old 6th July 2010, 18:08   #26
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We spent not more than 20mins in the crowd.

We took a rickshaw back to the hotel and sat on the beach front. A cool breeze was blowing. It happened to be a full moon night and the sky was clear. The moon was shining bright and the sea beneath, was roaring in full fury. This portion of the beach does not have any light. The street lights kept the beach lighted, to whatever extent.

The moonlit beach
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The hotel at day
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The blue light washed hotel at night
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Old 7th July 2010, 10:29   #27
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Sunday, 27th June

We woke up to a bright and clear morning. After having a quick breakfast, we decided to check out the New Marine Drive road. Beyond the lighthouse, the road is broken and has partly been engulfed by the sea.

We drove gingerly along the road, till the point where the road ends and gives way to the beach. This road is deserted and you can park your car at the end of the road and walk along to beach to the point, where a river meets the sea.

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This place also gave me the opportunity to click some pics of the OHC. I had been planning to do this for quite some time now, but was not being able to make it, for some reason or the other.

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Old 7th July 2010, 10:40   #28
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Stunning pics Saurabh da

The alloys look lovely and so do the OHC. updates on BH?
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Old 7th July 2010, 10:46   #29
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The sea was green under the bright sun. The heat was too much to venture out. Clicked a few snaps from the balcony.

Of Gods and Lesser Mortals - Puri .... Reclaimed-dsc_0151-large.jpg

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Monday, 28th June

The return journey.

Left at 9:30am after breakfast. The whole journey was uneventful. We did not have to pay the entry tax at the Orissa border, during return as well. Reached home by 7:00pm.

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All along the journey, the OHC did not miss a beat and I was amazed by the way it performed throughout.

Total distance covered : 1090kms
Average driving time, one way : 8hrs
FE : 16.09 kmpl

End of Travelogue
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Old 7th July 2010, 17:38   #30
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Some very lesser seen pics of Puri, at least for me. I long ago ventured into the temple side when went with parents, other than that whenever have been there - the huge waves always kept me busy! But then, as said, great pictures of the temple side and its activities.

Loved the travelogue immensely - simple yet informative!
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