Skip to main content

Featured Post

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

Book Launch of 'Ouch! Cried Planet Earth'

Ouch!Cried Planet Earth by Mrs.Dheera Kitchlu
Published by Serene Woods
Launched byRahul Bose at Hornbill House
3rd Decemeber, 2010

The launch of a new book is always a reason to rejoice, especially when it is a kids book set in Mumbai, and deals with the environment and how a 12 year old boy takes matters into his own hands! I have not attended many book launches before, but was rather enthusiastic about attending this for two reasons - the author was one I had heard of (I have read a couple of her books) and corresponded wtih a few times, and secondly, the book was launched at the BNHS's Hornbill House. It had been ages since I visited the place, and  was really excited about visiting again, and that too for a book launch! 

I would have loved to take Samhith along, but the time wasnt suitable, and I had to leave him behind with his grandmother, rushing off just as he returned from school. Travelling to VT alone by train and walking down to BNHS made me re-live my college days when I made the same circuit at least once a week! 

I was just in time to look around and browse through Dheera Kitchlu's other books before it was time for the programme to begin. The book was to be launched by the actor, Rahul Bose, and he arrived exactly on time! I really appreciate the guy now! Dr. Rahmani, the Director of the BNHS was the chief guest and one of the guys from Serene Woods (the publishing house) did the honours. (Sorry, forgot to ask his name!).

The programme began with a short introduction by Dr.Rahmani, followed by the launch of the book. After the  formalities were over began the best part - the book reading! That Rahul Bose was a good actor is something I already knew, but that he would bring the book alive, was astounding! He had everyone in splits - from the youngest in the audience to the oldest.... all the kids were enthralled, well, almost all of them, except a few boys sitting near me. But he even managed to get them involved, asking them which excerpt to read next! He read three portions from the book, each one more interesting than the other.By the time he came to the last one, the one right at the end, the mike had conked off, and he had only his vocal chords to rely on, but that was more than enough, and every member of the audience was laughing as he came to the end. 

The book reading was followed by a wildlife quiz for the kids, and I really wished I had brought Samhith along! However, it was getting late, and I was restless to get back home, so I went and spoke to Mrs.Kitchlu and the others before taking my leave. Wish I could have spent some more time. Next time there is something like this, I shall take Samhith along! 

It was a wonderful evening, something I shall remember. As to the book, I began reading it on my way back in the train and am almost through. It is as interesting as it promised to be, and I am looking forward to Samhith reading it. I shall wait for his reactions before I write the review, so it will take some time. As of now, I have  a copy of a wonderful book, signed by the author, as well as an actor who brought the story alive. Both, Samhith and I shall treasure this one!

Here are a few photos from the event


  1. Rahul Bose looks nice :D And the book sounds promising too!

  2. I like the simplicity of Rahul Bose in these pictures, and good to know he was punctual too.

    I hope more such books on environment awareness are brought out for children as well as adults.

  3. @Mridula: oh yes, it does... and the book is fun to read too!

    @Celine: he was so normal and down to earth... actually liked meeting him :) and yes, i hope for more such books and such events too!

  4. He reads well too I am sure.
    Great pics.

  5. I really love love rahul bose movies :) Wish I could be there :D

    I should also get my hand on this book :) Would love to read....


Post a Comment

Thanks so much for stopping by. Please leave a comment for me so that I will know you have been here....

Popular posts from this blog

Gokarna Part II – The Five Lingams

We continued our Gokarna trip by visiting four other Shiva temples in the vicinity, all connected to the same story of Gokarna. The story of Gokarna mentions the Mahabaleshwara Lingam as the one brought from Kailas by Ravana, and kept at this place on the ground by Ganesha. (See my earlier post- Gokarna – Pilgrimage and Pleasure). However, the story does not end here. It is believed that, in his anger, Ravana flung aside the materials which covered the lingam- the casket, its lid, the string around the lingam, and the cloth covering it. All these items became lingams as soon as they touched the ground. These four lingams, along with the main Mahabaleshwara lingam are collectively called the ‘ Panchalingams’ . These are: Mahabaleshwara – the main lingam Sajjeshwar – the casket carrying the lingam. This temple is about 35 Kms from Karwar, and is a 2 hour drive from Gokarna. Dhareshwar – the string covering the lingam. This temple is on NH17, about 45 Kms south of Gokarna. Gunavanteshw

Rama Temple, Gokarna

To my right , the waves rush to the shore, eager to merge with the sand. To my left, the same waves crash against the rocks, their spray diverting my reverie as I ponder over the beauty of nature, and wonder what first brought people here. Was it this beauty that encouraged them to build a temple here, or was it the fresh, sweet spring water flowing from the hill here that made this place special? No matter what the reason, I am glad my auto driver brought me here. We are at the Rama temple in Gokarna, just a few minutes away from the Mahabaleshwara Temple, yet offering so different a perspective.

Pandharpur Yatra 2023

The first time I visited Pandharpur was back in 2007 . The names Vitthal and Pandharpur, were just names to me. I had heard of them, but that was about it. Seeing the lord standing on the brick, hands on his hips, was memorable, but more memorable was the sight that greeted us as we walked out of the main sanctum of the temple. In the mandap just outside were a group of devotees singing abhangs , and dancing. This was the first time I had heard abhangs , and even almost 15 years later, I can remember the welling of feeling within me, listening to the songs, and how fascinated I was by the sight of the devotees dancing, lost in their love of the Lord. Over the years, as I have read more about Vitthal, and participated in Ashadi Ekadashi programmes at Puttaparthi, that first experience has stayed clear in my mind and heart. Every time I tell my Balvikas students of the saints who sang of Vitthala, it is that experience that I re-live. I visited Pandharpur again, in 2010, but that experie