Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Revisiting Bangalore

The tablet read:
“The great trigonometrical survey was situated 38 feet north of the baseline station”.
Observer: Capt. W.M. Campbell
R.E. 1875-1876
Lt.Col. W.S. Heaviside
R.E. 1887-88

To know that this location played an important and indispensable role in confirming that the Mt. Everest, one of the peaks of Himalayas, was the highest in the world itself was a humbling experience.

Welcome to the ‘Bangalore walks’. Arun and Rupa are facilitating many a souls revisit this beautiful erstwhile garden city, now an IT hub, and appreciate the rich and varied heritage of the city we live in – Bangalore.

The first four years of my life were spent in Bangalore. To me Bangalore has always been a loved location, for I carried the images of my beginning years rather vividly. I lived in a street called ‘Fruit Street’ near the present day Commercial Street. I still remember the narrow crowded alleys of this region. In a way, this walk as revitalised me to step out of Yelahanka and walk those narrow alleys. The feelings can go beyond simple mortal words of description.

But while standing in one of the towers built by Kempegowda, I could actually visualise him scanning the surroundings majestically. I could actually see the undulating geography clothed in shrubbery. We will never be able to say what Kempegowda’s notion of a city was. The reality is that this city has been cradled by multiple influences culminating in one of the most cosmopolitan city of the world.

Our next stop was in the Kadumalleswara temple. Just to be in a temple which was built by Venkoji, Chatrapathi Shivaji’s brother, a premise frequented by Kempegowda and his family is a great feeling. I did hear from one of my uncle that Lord Rama, along with Sita and Laxman also spent a few days in this location. Though there was no temple at that time, there was a linga that signified Lord Shiva.

We next walked down to visit the archaeological wonder ‘Dakshina Mukha Nandi Teertha”, the only Nandi to be sitting south facing. Through the open mouth of the Nandi water continuously falls on the Linga located a few feets below. The residents of Malleswara just managed to save this site from the clutches of greedy builders.
Following the spice route in Bangalore in the highly crowded Chikpet was in itself a wonderful experience. I was trying to find the meaning of Tharagupet. ‘Tharagu’ in Tamil means ‘brokering’. May be in olden days trade goods were exchanged and brokered around in this street. After a rather pleasant walk (despite a hot sun), we reached the Red Mount. A spacious place to eat decorated with traditional artistic creations. I was eating the Ragi Mudde after almost three years. All the food that was served had a traditional touch to it including the people. We said goodbye to Arun and Rupa at the Ulsoor Gate.


Blogger Tara Kini said...

That sounds like a fulfilling experience. Do any of the students use blogs? It would be interesting to see their responses to the walk.

3:17 AM  

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