Saturday, May 16, 2020

Tulsi Vrindavan

A modern day 'Tulsi Vrindavan'

'Tulsi Vrindavan' or 'Tulsi Chaura' (in Odia language) has its own significance in any Hindu home. It is a podium like structure made of stone or cement or even of mud (as per somone's spending capacity) for the 'Holy Basil' plant, mostly placed at the entrance of the house or at the center of the courtyard of traditional Indian homes.
In Odia culture, it is an ritual to offer water at 'Tulsi Vrindavan' and to take a few leaves of Tulsi/Holy Basil as prasadam. Also, in the evening, the woman of the house lights a diya (oil lamp) here.
The literal translation of word 'Tulsi' is 'matchless' and Tulsi (Holy Basil) is regarded as an manifestation of 'Goddess Lakshmi' in Hinduism. Offering of Tulsi leaf is mandatory during ritualistic worship of 'Lord Vishnu'. 

Friday, May 15, 2020

Lenovo LEGION... Is it worth the buck!!!

Quite sometime since I am using a LEGION, will post a review soon with all the pros and cons...

Sunday, March 08, 2020

International Women's Day

If we show respect for women in our day to day life, will we ever need this dedicated day of the year to cherish the importance of feminism in this existence!!!

#internationalwomensday #cherishfeminism #womensday

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Berbera Forest, Odisha

3 hours of drive (130 kilometers) from the crowded capital city of Bhubaneswar and you are in the middle of a dense teak wood forest with no mobile network and breathful of oxygen. Spread over the districts of Khordha and Nayagarh, this tranquil place is around 40 kilometers off NH 5 from Balugaon.

Early morning in Berbera Forest, Odisha
Early morning in Berbera Forest, Odisha

History of the place takes you back to the 1850s when the area was a dense 'Sal Forest' and Britishers found the place and did cut Sal trees for the use in Railway track. I truly appreciate their vision then to bring Teak plantation from Burma and that results in the 'Teak Forest' now. The exotic teak wood plantation/forest was a heaven for wood mafias in the 1980s and to save it, it was being protected by CRPF for quite sometime. Thanks to their effort which results in seeing 150+ year old teak trees with circumference of 10-12 feet and upto 80-100 feet height. The name Berbera came from a British officer's wife, who was believed to be killed by a Tiger here. There was a time when Tiger was pretty common and people did come here for hunting. Britishers did built an inspection bungalow back in 1912 and it is still there intact.

A giant 150 year old teak tree with 15 feet circumference inside Berbera Forest, Odisha
A giant old teak tree inside Berbera Forest, Odisha

A visit to the Mahisigotha watch tower at Rajni Forest area is must, it is around 15 kilometers from the cottage and takes about 1.5-2 hours. It is advised to take a SUV or 4x4 vehicle as there is nonexistence of roads at certain places. The view of night sky from the place was quite magnificent as there was absolutely no light pollution. An early morning walk into the woods will be rewarding in seeing some bird species and some really old teak trees. There is a small stream flows thru the forest. Elephant and deer sighting depends on luck. Giant squirrels are quite common here.

Road to watch tower, Rajni Forest Area, Berbera Forest, Odisha
Night sky from Mahisigotha watch tower, Berbera Forest, Odisha

Where to Stay!

The 1912 British bungalow is still there and being used by the security force and forest department officials. There are 3 nos. newly built ecotourism cottages there with a separate kitchen block. Each cottage has a bedroom with double bed and attached bathroom, it is surrounded by a varandah on 3 sides and a small garden in the front. Air conditioning and Geyser is there in each room. Good quality bath towel and hand towels are being provided at this ecotourism cottage. The quilt provided was also very good quality, unlike I have seen in other government accommodations in other places. Food quality was fantastic, if you love the native odia dishes then you will definitely feast. The cook there is very cooperative and not to mention about the friendly and well behaved support staff.

Ecotourism Cottages at Berbera Forest, Odisha
Ecotourism Cottages at Berbera Forest, Odisha
Ecotourism Cottages at Berbera Forest, Odisha
Ecotourism Cottages at Berbera Forest, Odisha
Ecotourism Cottages at Berbera Forest, Odisha
Ecotourism Cottages at Berbera Forest, Odisha
Ecotourism Cottages at Berbera Forest, Odisha

Where to book:

Mobile Network: Only BSNL and Vodafone does work near the cottages, but there will be no mobile network if you go to the forest or Rajani Range/Viewing Tower.

Friday, January 10, 2020

2020... Another decade begins

Really!!! Another decade just started and I am yet to realize the supersonic speed of the last one... What a decade the previous one was, loads of new things in life, personally and professionally. It was a mixed bag of emotions, some of the best things and some of the worst things... Also realized that, last decade only, I started some serious blogging (though for a couple of years only :D). Hopefully, the glory of the blog will be back in coming days and hope to share some good content.

Hope this decade brings you loads of happiness and prosperity... Happy 2020 everyone.

P.S. The photograph is an aerial view of infamous basket-boats at Hogenakkal Falls at Karnataka-Tamilnadu border.

Friday, September 06, 2019

City Beautiful 'Bhubaneswar'

Cyclone 'Fani' did hit the city when it was looking at its infrastructural best and smashed the 'Smart City'

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Speed Cameras in Bhubaneswar, Odisha

The good strange thing I noticed this time in Bhubaneswar is, there are speed sensors and cameras installed at few places. These show the approaching vehicle's actual time speed and there are cameras set to get the snap shot of the rear licence plate of the vehicle. Seems like the effect of smart-city. This particular one in the picture has been installed on NH-5, between Vanivihar Square and Rasulgarh Square. Also did notice one in-front of Capital Hospital, the road approaching Biju Patnaik International Airport. Though I am not sure if these are being used for sending tickets for over-speeding, but it is for sure that it is creating some awareness and some sort of fear among the speed crazy people.

Sunday, April 14, 2019

The Temple Kitchen

The 13th century 'Ananta Basudeva Temple' is considered as only Bishnu Temple in the city of Bhubaneswar, Odisha. It is believed that Lord Vishnu established himself as the doorkeeper of the city by the order of Lord Shiva. The food prepared in this temple kitchen is considered as 'holy food' and is called 'Maha Prasad'.
The food is cooked on these earthy pots on wood fire directly with all ingredients mixed precisely. The prasad is truly divine in taste and a must try if you are in Bhubaneswar.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Bhubaneswar: Morning Vegetable Market

Today morning, while being in Bhubaneswar, randomly I decided to capture the Sun rise in a temple premise. On my way back, I found this street vegetable market and could not resist to take the camera out again and captured the freshness of life here in this beautiful city, most importantly the warm of people around. Had such a good time interacting with vegetable sellers, seeing all the fresh vegetables, knowing the name of some leaf vegetables, exchanging smiles with buyers and these beautiful photographs during the process... my day is made. For quite sometime I was away from here (3 years really :O), but now I am back and should show you more such glimpses regularly. Have a great day :)

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Subh Deepawali

Subh Deepawali (Happy Diwali) everyone... May this festival of lights bring you another year of happiness and prosperity... Stay Blessed.