Thursday, 16 March 2017

Hyderabad to Hampi

Hampi figures on tourist map of the world because of UN Heritage tag. The ruins in Hampi, which was the capital of Vijaynagara empire in 15th century AD, tell many a saga in stone. Every structure, pillar, pagoda, temple, platform, water well has a story to tell. You get transported back in time, completely in awe. You tend to get lost in time.
Ghumakkads Harsh and Neeta drove from Hyderabad to Hampi in Feb-2017 along with our friends from Germany Pramod and Helga.
Pramod and Harsh studied together at BITS Pilani in 1960s. Both couples in their sixties, bitten by the travel bug undertook this 1000-kms road trip spread over four days.


Here is a road map of the route taken by us. While going, we went via Kurnool and Bellary which took almost 10 hours to cover 490 kms. However, on the return leg, we took the route via Raichur which took 8 hours only and was 435 kms. Map courtesy internet.

More stories on Hampi will follow.
Thanks for browsing.

    - Harsh-the-Ghumakkad/ 16th March 2017

Saturday, 11 March 2017

Dancing at Eighty

Ever seen an eighty year old dancer perform whose knees have given way? She can't stand and perform. So what is the way out? Sit on a chair and perform. Sounds weird? Not when you see Mrs Savita Bhargava my aunt from Gurgaon, performing at a wedding dance night in Udaipur.
Pre-wedding function called 'Sangeet' संगीत meaning music is actually a dance night where bride's family members perform short dances. In olden days, sangeet ceremony was held only at bride's place. And another musical night called 'vadhu parichay' वधु परिचय  was held at groom's place after the wedding. This was to formally introduce the newly wedded bride to groom's family. But with changing times when families of both sides come to one city, sangeet is attended by families and friends of both bride and groom.

The pictures here are from a 'global' wedding. The groom and family came from Italy and the bride (my niece) from an NRI family in USA/Hongkong.
The wedding took place in a Fort like hotel in Udaipur. Can't wait any longer to see the pictures? Here we go. We open the scene with eighty-year old dancer performing while seated on a chair.

 Two short videos to show her 'adaa' अदा !

Savita Mami's performance was preceded by Nidhi. She too gave a superb performance. I couldn't take pictures myself owing to delayed arrival from airport. But thanks to her hubby Mukul, here is a one-minute video for you.

Looked like a dream wedding? Indeed it was.
More pictures will follow in next post.

Thanks for browsing.
   Harsh-the-Ghumakkad/11th March 2017

Thursday, 9 March 2017

BITS Goa Campus

Ghumakkad's alma mater BITS Pilani has four campuses, three in India and one in Dubai. Stories on Pilani, Hyderabad and Dubai campuses had appeared earlier. This short picture story takes you around the Goa campus.

It was a Sunday morning, 5th Feb 2017 to be precise. The institute was having its annual Technical Festival (TechFest) called 'Quark' at that time. On the way back to the airport, we halted at the campus for an hour or so. These few pictures give you a glimpse of the campus.
 The aerial shot below is courtesy Drone Nation, a students' initiative at Goa campus. Quite a sharp and stunning picture!

The main entrance was all decked up for a performance in the evening.

 It was very nice of Dr Raghu Rama Director Goa campus to take time off on a Sunday and meet us in his office. Thank you Dr Raghu Rama.
 It was a pleasure to interact with students and to answer their queries like 'What after BITS?'
 The main building has a well designed atrium.

 Goa campus has taken initiatives in inter-disciplinary research. One of such labs we visited was 'Cognitive Neuroscience Lab'. 
 Thank you Dr Baths for facilitating our visit.

 Special thanks are due to Nitin Chopra who will graduate in 2019. He coordinated our visit so well. Thanks Nitin.
Here are the links to earlier stories on other campuses of BITS Pilani:
40th Year Reunion of Pilani Alumni
Dubai Campus- An Oasis
Alumni Global Meet at Dubai 
Hyderabad the Campus which rocks
What is so great about BITS?

For many BITSian readers, this post is a precursor to BITS Alumni Global Meet to be held in Goa in 2020. See you in Goa then.

Thanks for browsing.

   - Harsh-the-Ghumakkad/9th March 2017