Life's Like That

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Coorg Adventures

Right..so I went to Coorg for New Years. The whole trip was quite an adventure from the word go. But before I get into the details, there are a few things you should know about me:

  • I love plans...everything should be planned to the last detail. I do not like "we will get there and then figure out" kind of things. And I get totally upset when things don't go according to plan.
  • I'm quite a punctual person and absolutely HATE to be kept waiting, specially if Im ready to go somewhere.
  • I am slightly hyper about travel and bus/train/flight timing. I like to reach the station at least 30 mins before the bus/train is scheduled to leave and at least 1 hour before the flight is scheduled to take off. (My grandfather used to reach the station 2 hours before time and my dad would like it if we reached at least one hour before..so its an inherited family legacy type thing.)
  • I am not too comfortable about my travelling companions getting off the bus/train at stops. I get worried and tense and expect the vehicle to take off without aforementioned companions. Some people who have travelled with me in the past, specially in buses have complained that I do not let them even get off to pee. (Rohini's exact words were " It doesnt matter if you are dying of kidney stones or having labour pains, if you are with Ron you just cannot get off the bus"..which I think is a little unfair)
  • I am basically suspicious of auto drivers(long experience in Bangalore) and human kind in general and am always ready to believe the worst of them.

Right so to get on with the story... some details of our Coorg trip...what was planned at least:

  • Bus was at 10.30 p.m. We both needed to pack. So I instructed Rahul to leave office by 6.30 go home, pack and be at my place by 8.30 pm. We would grab some dinner( I knew exactly what we could eat for dinner) and then be at the bus stop by 10.00 p.m. I think I was extremely reasonable and my time planning was perfect, some people's opinions on this should just be ignored.
  • We were supposed to reach Virajpet by 6.30 am.(at least that was what the female at the KSRTC counter had told me) Then take local bus from there to Kabbinikadu junction from where the resort people would pick us up ( its on top on a mountain and only vehicles with 4 wheel drive can get up that road).
  • Once we reached Virajpet, we would immediately go about trying to find return tickets and book the same to avoid last minute tension and worry (mostly on my part).

What actually happened was:

  • Rahul reached my house only at 9 p.m. I was hopping mad by then. There was no time to pick up dinner according to my plans. So I did what any reasonable person would have done: refuse to eat!! It took a lot of coaxing and apologising and blaming the traffic on Rahul's part for me to finally relent and eat dinner at bad Andhra joint near the bus stop. As a result, we reached the stop only at 10.20 p.m.
  • Bus journey was awful. The roads after Mysore are REALLY bad. Suggestion to anybody else who might be planning to visit Coorg, dont do a night journey, its really not safe, accidents are just waiting to happen on that road. Anyways, to get back to the point, we were in this constant state of semi dozing wakefulness which was more exhausting than not sleeping at all.
  • We reached Virajpet at 5 a.m. We stepped off the bus into a dark cold road, completely deserted execpt for a couple of cows and us. There is not bus station to speak of..just a tiny little shelter type thing.
  • We shivered there for a while, and then found helpful auto man who told us that local buses would start plying only at 7 a.m.
  • There was no question of standing on the road for two hours in the freezing cold, so when the auto guy offered to drop us to Kabbinikadu junction we readily agreed.
  • However, the moment that rickety old auto left the town limits, I started panicking. (Please Note: I panic very quietly when Im very scared and am not very vocal about it). We were on this completely deserted, pitch dark hill road. Anything could have happened, the guy could have robbed/killed us, we could have had an accident, the auto could have broken down...anything. taking that auto was the single most stupid decision of my life. I clenched my fists and my teeth and said "Please let us reach safely God" again again in my head. The only good thing of all the panicking was that I didnt realize exactly how cold it was. Even the sight of Rahul in a pullover and two jackets with hood over his head didnt drive home the point.
  • At one point, the auto man just stopped. The moment he cut the engine two things happened a) the headlight went off and we were plunged into the most inky darkness ever and b) I stopped breathing, convinced that he was going to turn around with a knife and demand money. Which didnt happen of course. He merely wanted to fill oil or some such thing.
  • Rahul stepped out of the auto, looked up at the sky and said "Ron come out and see the sky..its beautiful". I replied in a small voice "Ummm..Im very scared you know." To which my hero said " Dont be, its Coorg"...and continued to star gaze. I have no idea what he meant or why he thought it was comforting.
  • About an hour later, we were dropped off under a solitary tree. Auto man took money asked our names and sped off into the darkness, leaving us to realize that we did not have any signal on our cells. Therefore we couldnt call the resort.
  • Rahul, (bright child he is) saw a board for some kind of a home stay thingy some 400 metres off. So we walked up to it. By then I had stopped panicking and was just beginning to feel the cold. The door to the house was wide open("Its Coorg" said rahul by way of explaination). We tried coughing, stamping our feet, knocking politely etc but when nothing worked we banged on the door till the owner woke up. (I was beginning to turn blue with the cold so thank god). We turned on the charm etc and he very kindly called the resort and asked them to pick us up....from the actual Kabinikadu junction which was some 2 kms down the road we had come. the auto had overshot.
  • Left with no alternative, we walked back two kms to the actual junction. It was awesome. For the first time in my life I saw dawn break and night turn into day. Surrounded by hills, on a completely deserted road, with our breath misting in front of us....amazing.
  • The resort guys picked us up and everything. We realized the need for jeeps etc for transportation as soon as we hit the mountain trail. It was a mud track that went up vertically,,almost 90 degrees...no kidding! Really! The resort was GORGEOUS!!! Surrounded by hills, the only noise there was that of birds chirping!!!
  • We slept for most part of the day. After lunch we went for walk in the mountains. Looooong walk through the beautiful quiet jungle, which convinced me that trekking cannot be all that bad (but only is we can come back to nice room and loo).
  • It was perrrrfect till we were confronted by a herd of cows with the biggest horns I have ever seen in my life. I swear!! Those horns were ENORMOUS. We immediately gave them the right of way, to argue with cows with horns like those on a desertedjungle trail is a very bad idea.
  • Which was all very well. But as my luck would have it, the last cow with the biggest horns of them all, stopped dead in its tracks and looked at me. I mean it cocked its head, pawed the ground and just looked at me. I looked back at it...although with an added touch of mild hysteria and muttered "Rahul its looking at me,its looking at me, it has horns it has horns" repeatedly. We stood there, the cow and I, (with Rahul looking helplessly between the two of us and saying "Relax its just a cow, dont move it will go away"with eyes locked etc till the small cowherd (aged about 10/11 years) skipped merrily down the road, slapped the creature on its butt and shooed it along the road. He also cackled very loudly and rudely at me. I could hear him laughing all the way down the mountain.
  • The rest of the trek was quite uneventful, although very beautiful and a lot of fun.
  • The result of this very eventful day was that we fell asleep by 10.30 p.m. and were fast asleep when the clock struck 12.

The journey back:

  • We were dropped back at Kabbinikadu junction by the resort in time for the 12.30 p.m. bus to Virajpet. We waited till 1.15 only to be told that the bus had broken down somewhere and there was no saying when it would arrive. We arranged for overpriced rattletrap jeep to convey us to Virajpet.
  • I of course was highly stressed by then because we had not booked return tickets. But Rahul handled it all beautifully and ignored my stressed out self till we were in the bus and I was destressed. We had strange tasting Mallu meals near the bus stop.
  • We had to wait for about 20 mins at the stop for the bus. Inspite of that Rahul waited till the bus was about to leave to go to the loo. The driver started his engine and all and the stupid boy was still not in his seat, so once again I panicked, jumped to the front, poked the driver, flapped my arms about and said "No No Wait Please" till he showed up.
  • I objected very vociferously to him getting off at stops after that...even to pee. And sat bolt upright in my seat and looked anxiously out of the window, at the driver and the conductor and again out of the window till I saw him returning.
  • It took us 8 long hours to reach Bangalore, during which time we finished 1 500 ml bottle of Coke, 1 bottle of Frooti, and 8 packets of chips.

So that was that. I had a lovely New Years inspite of all the misadventures. That place was TOTALLY worth it. And much as I hate to admit it, I have come to the conclusion that Rahul is a less hyper, more sensible person than I am, not to mention wonderfully tolerant, and patient ...I mean he never once lost his temper or snapped at me even when I was at my psychotic worst. He also never once screamed at me for forgetting to get return tickets, whereas if it had been him who had forgotten then I would not have let him forget it in a hurry.

There!! I've said it. Are you happy now???

32 Comments:

  • Glad you had such a wonderful time and thanks for sharing it with us. Rahul seems like a very reasonable and nice guy. Happy new year to you both!

    By Blogger M (tread softly upon), at 7:19 AM  

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    By Blogger death, at 7:01 PM  

  • @m: he is...and both of us often wonder how he puts up with me :(
    wisha a very very happy new year.

    @death: beautiful??? ummmm....ok ...if u say so :)

    By Blogger Ron, at 7:51 PM  

  • BTW, ur blog has inspired me to go to this place. I mean the resort.. I have been to coorg several times, but want to know more about the resort. Will talk to u abt this. And yes, Rahul is v sweet. Now how he tolerates u is something he shd explain! heehee...

    By Anonymous Gauri, at 8:39 PM  

  • Hey Ron! I think i've been at this place when i was in Bangalore. Isnt it Honey Valley or something. Very nice family, amazing food when we were there! And i know the amazing walk in the woods! Did you guys manage go to the waterfall! With a ton of leeches hanging on to your legs?? Its was swell!
    Anyways, glad that you enjoyed it!
    Have fun! And don't be soooo paranoid!

    By Blogger Anand, at 12:02 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger death, at 1:30 AM  

  • @gauri: comemnts about how rahul tolerates me etc are NOT appreciated. but yes you musssttt go there, its amazing. will tell u all details later.

    @anand: yeah thats the place..honey valley. totally awesome isnt it?? and i try to be less paranoid...i do really. but fail miserably :(

    By Blogger Ron, at 1:59 AM  

  • Hi Death! Happy new year to u and others visiting this blog.

    By Anonymous Gauri, at 2:10 AM  

  • hey ron...
    after reading your blog even i'm waiting to visit this place. i lllooovve travelling. don't remember when i was out of mumbai last. ahhh yess! i had gone to pune for my viva, so u can imagine :(

    as for ur description about rahul...i can figure out he's ur perrrfffect match (opposites do attract)!

    By Anonymous aratii, at 3:02 AM  

  • so u were brother n sister in the whole episode eh?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:27 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger death, at 3:39 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger death, at 3:40 AM  

  • @aartii: thats really sad!! you MUSST get out of the city every now and then you know...you feel so much better when you get back. If you are really planning to visit coorg, you could check out this website : www.coorgtourism.com, it has information on the place that we went to : Honey Valley as well as other homestay/resorts there. And the best part is that most of these places are really affordable.

    @death: if i disabled anonymous comments how would you be able to communicate with gauri :D
    i did realize that writing so much about my holiday might lead to questions like these...but what the hell..its my blog and i will write what i want to. dear anonymous here is too stupid to be paid too much attention to.

    By Blogger Ron, at 3:49 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger death, at 4:30 AM  

  • hey! quite an eventful trip! glad to know u guys had a great time! have heard some very nice things about Coorg. must make a trip down there sometime.

    By Blogger Abhishek Chatterjee, at 8:50 PM  

  • @abhishek: yes you must go there whenever you come to India/ South India next. Its absolutely beautiful!!And the food is....yummmmmm!!!

    By Blogger Ron, at 3:15 AM  

  • Ahh, I love the cows!! Ma is a bit like you, but Dad is worse. he once got off the bus to buy kela-chips at Nagercoil, and then got lost because in that huge bus-stop, all buses looked the same. And Ma let him rush about desperately for 5 minutes before she stopped laughing and called him to our bus. Since then, dad not only objects to family members getting off the bus, but protests vociferously when strangers do it:D

    I wish I could go to Coorg, you describe it so beautifully. Have you ever gone to a trek in Purulia's Ayodhya Pahad, during those stays here? Glad you had lovely time.

    By Blogger good morning, midnight, at 5:41 AM  

  • @gmm: oh your poor poor father!!! i dont blame him at all!!! aami oboshsho oto duur egoi ni..but yes i do remember once we had gone to Mysore in a bus and this couple in front of us didnt get in and the bus left and i got totally hyper much to my family's annoyance.

    And yes of course Ive been to Ayodhya Pahad!! Its beeeeeeeeoooootifulll...those trees with the red leaves...sal i think....gorgeous!!

    Choley esho Bangalore...Ill take you to Coorg...its so totally worth visiting!!

    By Blogger Ron, at 6:08 AM  

  • There are more pristine places in coorg which fortunately are yet to be explored but I think your vivid imagination has truly captured what a memorable visit it was..........

    By Anonymous r, at 11:20 PM  

  • What is the name of the resort and contact info?

    By Blogger subhendu, at 2:58 AM  

  • @subhendu: its called honey valley resort. check out the link given below for contact details on this and other homestays/resorts in coorg:

    www.coorgtourism.com

    By Blogger Ron, at 3:05 AM  

  • hey ron, good to hear about your experience in coorg.and that u liked it there. i'm from coorg. it really is a nice place. wayanad in kerala is also similar n excellent for trekking. coorg and wayanad r neighbouring districts. hai to rahul. perfectly balanced friendship. wat would u do without him :-) take care n chill. relax at times. bye

    By Blogger sonia, at 2:23 PM  

  • I love this post. I found it by accident. It is hilarious...it sounds like me and my best friend when we travel.

    By Blogger Mississauga Masala, at 7:37 AM  

  • Ron,

    You write quite well. You should well, write.
    Wish you Success.
    -Jaywalking

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:49 PM  

  • can u let me know about d acommodation facilities in coorg,n also the cost>>

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:14 AM  

  • It was fun to sit here in Florida and read abt the wonderful place where I spent the 1st 16 yrs of my life growing up. Thanks for taking me down the memory lane. It was quite funny. I could totally relate to it.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:32 PM  

  • The real estate is one sector that features as one of the most badly hit sectors following the global economic meltdown. Especially in developing countries like India, where real estate was going great guns, so to say, faced a steep downfall following the recession and inflation. Especially in the metros and the developing cities like Bangalore, real estate suffered dearly as the demand for the residential units, though increasing became a pent up demand. The badly hit economy particularly the IT sector that has a strong foothold in Bangalore, and the high rates of interest in home loans made the demand for residential units go down or at best become a pent up demand. It is believed that once the situation stabilizes the demands would start surfacing. Another very problematic issue that the real estate dealers are facing is that patrons of the currently booked flats are not willing to pay the original price that they had agreed on but the current price that is less than the original amount owing to the current economic condition. Not only the residential units but the commercial properties like the hotels in Bangalore have also naturally seen a drop in their occupancy. The ITC hotels in Bangalore that registered the highest occupancy, as high as 83%, have been forced to cut down on their tariffs by almost 20% as the occupancy has also gone down by 20%. On the contrary, the business hotels in Bangalore are surviving the tough times as the number of business travelers has not been affected as hard as the umber of leisure hotels. The budget hotels in Bangalore have seen a hike owing to the obvious reasons.

    By Blogger Martin, at 5:20 AM  

  • I was looking for blogs related with bangalore, karnataka and found your blog as an interesting one with relevant information. I felt that you blog post is worth enough for a valid comment. I enjoyed reading your post and your blog photos.

    India is truly a great place with lots of diversity and is a unique place in the world. Even after the terror attacks in india and the the economic melt down india tourism industry has performed well. I am person who is closely watching the trends and developments in India tourism and always enthusiastic to know more about India. You can follow my updates on @india_tourism in twitter or in my india travel blog.

    By Blogger Heart Mates, at 12:42 AM  

  • both are stupids... your not in a pakistan or afghanistan to scare to every movement.. nothing to scare in south india.. be positive.. enjoy all the time.. am one of adventures .. use to go forest every week... stay in forest for one week.... all u need guts and positive attitude..

    krishnamurthyg1984@gmail.com

    By Anonymous krishna, at 12:46 AM  

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    By Blogger snigdha G, at 12:10 AM  

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    By Blogger reshma M, at 2:31 AM  

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    By Blogger Hai Baji, at 8:35 PM  

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