Thursday, April 28, 2022

Signs2: Kodaikanal

It's been three years since I visited one of my favorite places, the Princess of Hill Stations, Kodaikanal. COVID has prevented me from meeting my lovely princess. Even if I get a chance, which may be brighter immediately, my traveling wheelchair isn't helping me because it wasn't used regularly, and the joystick becomes more difficult to maneuver. 

Signboard of my uncle's wood house in Kodaikanal

My aunt has been calling me to come to stay at their woodhouse in Thandikudi, on the Kodaikanal half-mountain, where they are currently camping with my grandma. I couldn't accept their invitation as I am not yet ready to travel. Apart from the wheelchair, I don't have anyone to assist because both my brother and the cousin who often takes me out are busy with their jobs, so either one of them has to accommodate me or I need to look out for someone who could assist me on travel.

Before I go further off track, I come to the sign I posted above. There is a welcome sign to Kodaikanal by the highways department at the entrance of the town or before passing the tollgate.  If you've noticed, there's a small typo on the signboard: "Deportment" instead of "Department."

The word "deportment" refers to behavior, whereas "department" refers to an organization or division of government agencies. 

I wish the days weren't so far away from where I could take distance travel. Even though I only visited Yelagiri in February, and on that trip too, I couldn't experience any places owing to a faulty joystick. I may be able to travel in less than three months because I have ordered a new wheelchair, which may take a month to build as it was to be customized to my comfort and needs. 

I take this chance to organize a wheelchair to be driven into the car through the back door and parked in the empty passenger seat. Because the vertical height of our SUV and its entryway is insufficient for a regular wheelchair to enter or exit,  I've requested a wheelchair with a seat that can be raised down and up, so this facility will save me from having to modify the car. 

Saturday, April 23, 2022

Monkeys Returns

Recently, some monkeys invaded our neighborhood again after a long time. We used to live on the backstreet before moving to our current home on the 2nd main road, and we used to see a lot of monkeys doing all sorts of naughty things, but they gradually vanished before we moved. Surprisingly few monkeys occasionally visit our neighborhood and then leave after wandering for a while. 

Similar to the above, some monkeys visited our neighborhood a few weeks ago, and it appeared that they traveled through the congested wires that detract from the attractiveness of our street by hanging on one side of the roadway as they made their way into our street. The image shows how it sat and walked on the wires.

The first couple of photos were taken with the camera, but the rest were snapped with my phone as soon as I spotted them. I couldn't capture any more monkeys since they went behind the trees, and I had already seen monkeys much earlier, so I wasn't interested in photographing them. A few days ago, the monkeys returned, and one of them rushed across our balcony rail, terrifying the dog who was napping on the balcony at the time. 

As I write this, I hear shooing from below the house and from the grocery store next door; possibly the monkeys were attempting to steal bananas from the shop's outside display. 

Linking this post with SATURDAY CRITTERS

Wednesday, April 20, 2022



A beautiful sign points the way to an identical bungalow in Ooty, the queen of hill stations. I found this sign outside the cottage we stayed in Ooty during a visit some years ago. 

The sign (fixed to the rear bumper of the car) is the emblem of the State Government of Tamil Nadu, and the temple in the center (of the emblem) was the Srivilliputhur Andal Temple. The temple tower is one of the tallest among the temples of Tamil Nadu. The stamp on the cars means they belong to the state officials, and this one belongs to the collector of the CBE. I shot this during a visit to Valparai.

Monday, April 18, 2022

RGB Monday

Nephew's colorful underwear

I observed my nephew's underwear drying on the bed the other day and thought it was cool and colorful, so I decided to photograph it for fun. On April 26th, my nephew Kavin (younger brother's son) will be six months old. It's amusing to be around. He arrived last month from his maternal mother's home, having completed his fifth month because it is customary in our culture for the baby and mother to stay in their maternal home for 5 to 9 months after delivery before coming to the in-law's home. 

He's charming, intelligent, and naughty. He rolls onto his tummy and tries to crawl ahead, but he gives up because turning is easier for him. When he is awake, time passes quickly. And while he sleeps, we can work quietly, but he doesn't wake up to noises unless we address them aloud. It allows me to watch movies even when he is sleeping. He's in a good mood, and his delicate strokes genuinely caress me. He has a happy face and regularly smiles, even while he is crying. He chuckles. Lol 

Saturday, April 09, 2022

Jalagamparai Waterfall, Yelagiri

Trip to Yelagiri, Day 2, follows:

On the second day of our trip to Yelagiri in February, we decided to visit the Jalagamparai Waterfall in the foothills of Yelagiri, on the other side of the mountain. At the Albatross Luxury Suite—where we stayed in Yelagiri—they gave us a simple yet delicious breakfast (as a complimentary); thanks to the chef, Manikandan, I enjoyed his cooking. 

We left the cottage around 11 a.m. when everyone had finished getting ready. Traveling with a baby is not easy, and we cannot force anything or any plan to match our comfort rather than the needs of a baby. If you've been following my blog for a while, you'll know that we traveled to Yelagiri with my 4-month-old nephew, Kavin. 

The Jalagamparai waterfall is around 37 kilometers from Yelagiri, and we had to travel up to the district capital, Tirupattur, and turn left to get there. The road to the waterfall is very scenic and travels around one-third of Yelagiri's mountain; through farmlands and small villages, we reached the waterfall, and from the parking lot, the upper part of the falls is visible. 

Once we left Tirupattur, there was no restaurant or eatery on the way to the waterfall, so we bought our lunch ahead in Tirupattur and ate it after visiting the waterfall and getting out of the area; because there was a lot of monkey nuisance. 

The waterfall can be reached only by stairs, so I stayed in the car.  My father, who had heart disease, also avoided climbing the stairs; my mom and the others who climbed up were the ones who took these waterfall photos. The Jalagamparai Waterfall, which pours out of the River Attaaru and through the valleys of the Yelagiri Hills, cascades down from a height of 15 meters to form a beautiful waterfall. 

Adjacent to the waterfall is a beautifully constructed Murugan Temple in the form of Siva Linga. However, there is another way to get there, which includes a flight of stairs to climb, so they were just able to see the waterfall. The Linga-shaped temple was shot through a crevice in the rocks on the route to the waterfall.

Jalagamparai Falls does not always have water, and its water source is dependent on the rain that falls over the mountains. The monsoon is the best time to visit Jalagamparai, which occasionally faces floods and is quite dry during summers. While it was still winter when we arrived, the water level was low, but it was adequate for a few people to have a cool shower at a time. We weren't planning to bathe in the falls, so it didn't matter to us. 

There's a Vishnu temple at the foot of the hill from where the stairs begin to climb. And there are about 75 steps to reach the falls. We visited the falls on Monday and although it was a workday, there were so many people there that it made me wonder how packed it would be on Sundays.

We saw most of them leaving the place (after taking a bath in the falls) in mini trucks and vans. Some were cooking with big vessels as families in the woods adjoining the parking lot of the falls. It's a beautiful place to visit with family and friends, and it appears to be an amusement for residents of local villages and towns to unwind on weekends. 

We returned to the cottage by evening, and climbing the hill was pleasant; we made it a point to stop at a few viewpoints to capture the view of the plains. Because of the winter season, there was a haze beyond a point. We saw the sunset at the foothill park, where we had our evening tea.

Monday, April 04, 2022

RGB Monday

 A couple of colorful Kolam from Pongal

These are the remaining Kolams from the Pongal festival (Jan 14), which I shared here. As usual, I went around the neighborhood on Pongal Day looking for colorful kolams drawn by the neighbors, I couldn't find many kolams this year, same as last year, but I did manage to photograph a few.