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2023 - The Year That Was

Places impact you for a variety of reasons. And the same place impacts different people in different ways. This is especially true when it comes to spiritual experiences, where every single person’s experience is unique. And personally, every spiritual experience is unique, the same person can have different deeply spiritual experiences at different places, at different times. This thought has emerged because of my own experiences over the years, but especially so this year, with different and unique experiences at various places I have visited recently. I began this year with a visit to Baroda (Vadodara) with friends. It was meant to be a relaxed trip, a touristy trip, with our sons. We enjoyed ourselves to the hilt, but the highlight of that trip was a visit to the Lakulisha temple at Pavagadh. It was the iconography of the temple that I connected with, and I spent a few hours simply lost in the details of the figures carved around the temple. There was an indefinable connect with

A short visit to Karjat

The weekend saw us making a sudden trip to Karjat. No, not to one of the many resorts that line the road, and seem to have taken over the once-peaceful area, but as part of a service project. My husband and in-laws are part of the Sathya Sai Seva organization which conducts Gram-Seva, or village improvement programmes, and one of their activity hotspots is Karjat, since it is quite near Bombay. It is where my husband disappears every Sunday to do his bit, and we travel once in a while to pitch in our efforts too. This weekend, it was a Standard Chartered Bank sponsored “Educare – Medicare – Sociocare Camp”. Here are some images from our trip.

We started out as the sun was about to rise. Here are some of the images from the road………

Can you believe this is just about an hour away from Bombay? So much fog, and that too around 8AM!

The natural beauty of the place shows its face as soon as we are away from the noisy highway... Here are some images from the village.....

Some images from the camp

Father and son relax for a moment…..

And on the way back…..


  1. I am very happy to know abt the volunteer activities your hubby and in law does! It must have been quite a day to rest but you guys spent it for a cause , hats off!

    Talking about the hat, i like the fan on it in the son relaxing pictures.The water body in the mountain back drop is a visual treat. I wish toursim developes in India.

    And villagers should be supported for they are the back bone of our country.

  2. Nice country side....It is hard to believe that such place is only withing few kilometers of Bombay (or Mumbai).

    Having said that same thing is visible also within few kilometers outside Delhi..once one crosses NCR.

  3. Good photography Anu!
    I remember Karjat very well. We used to pass thru' that place on our way to Mumbai when I was in Pune for few years.I also remember the hot and tasty pav vadas of that place.

  4. @ Sri: thanks a lot! Yes, it is great for us too to see the kind of work they do, especially since it helps in inculcating the right values in Samhith too.....

    abt the hat, well,it is a solar one, and the fan works only when we are in the sun.... it is actually some one else's, and samhith has managed to break it :-(

    the area is a beautiful one, but there has been too much of development and none of them are worried about the impact on the environment.... wonder what it will be like in a few years...

    and yes, it is primarily an effort to empower the villagers to fend for themselves.... at least that is what we are trying to do.. lets hope it works!!

    @ Tarun: yes, i am sure we can find such places outside every city.... they have managed to remain untouched in spite of the developments, and i am unable to deide whether it is good or bad... for eg. in the last few years, karjat itself has gained tourist importance in terms of resorts, and while the area has improved in terms of roads and facilities, it is losing many of teh hills to the sand and gravel hunters and farmers are selling off their land to the resorts.... i wonder what will be left of it in a few years....

    @ Chitra:yes,it is the same place, just a lot more in the interior... but there are no vada pavs here... at least, thank god there are no shops here yet.... but the vada pavs at the station are the most famous ones!!

  5. Good activity to get engaged in on a weekend. :)
    You have captured lovely memories from the trip.

  6. Another great post of travel blogs. I appreciate your post. Please keep it up. Really it will be great post if you will special post on sight since.


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