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Friday, February 12, 2010

And I love Chennai...

I just cannot continue with my other posts without completing my India series..

Home is where the heart is and no matter where it is and how it is, there is something that draws you towards home. Well, these are a few of my favorite things...

1. Filter coffee: I know how picky everybody is about coffee, but I have almost quit coffee since I left Chennai. It has to be this good else no thank you! :) Served traditionally in a steel 'tumbler' and a 'dabara' bottom.

2. Tender coconut: You get this about everywhere in south India. The refreshing sweet water in a tender coconut makes it a health and useful drink in summer (which is what Chennai weather consists of all year! :))

3. Food: A traditional meal on the banana leaf to its modern version on plate, I love them all. This could be a typical lunch or dinner. Our breakfast is only slightly less complicated!

4. Mehendi: Ok I cheated, this is typically not from Chennai, but I still get the henna tattoo done every time I am there. I did this design on a friend's palm.

5. Knick- knack shopping: The perfect place to shop those tiny things you always wanted but could never find. Ah! the joy of shopping on small alleys and the art of bargaining (or the lack there of :)).

6. Movies: There are more movies released in India per year than in the rest of the world. Oh no! I am not even trying to compare their qualities, but we Indians loove to watch movies. Chennai has several multiplexes and theaters for such crazy people. I watched this amazing movie called "3-Idiots" this time with 9 of my family members.

7. Marina beach: One of the best places to hang out in Chennai for free. Preferably in the mornings, to watch the glorious sun rise before the city awakes. This place has just so many memories.

8. Nature: The Vedanthangal bird sanctuary is a much needed breather. About two hours from our home you reach this wonderful gift of nature where birds from all over the world migrate to, during the winter.

9. Silk sarees: These drape around piece of cloth is among the most prestigious possessions of a women. The grand onces are worn for special occasions, but simple ones are worn everyday. You must try wearing one! They are one of the most elegant pieces of garment for a women.


10. More elephants: I just love them..:)

Picture Courtesy:

Bandipur to Mysore

Continuing on my vacation in India, from the serene Bandipur forest lodge, we moved on to Mysore for 3 days. We visited sooo many places in this wonderful city that I am just going to pick the pictures that I loved the best from every place.

Nanjundeshwar temple

Brindavan Gardens

Chamundeshwari temple

Nandi: the bull

The Mysore zoo: two of my favorite animals :)

Mysore Palace: one of the most famous tourist spots

St Philomena's Church

Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary

Tipu Sultan, one of south India's famous and powerful emperors; his summer palace

Gumbaz, the tomb of Tipu Sultan

Sangama - meeting of 3 rivers: Kapila, Kabini & Kaveri

The city had such variety to offer in terms of food, places to visit, shopping, and what is best is that the cost of living here is much lesser than the metropolitan cities. Mysore, a good trip.
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