The morning had fled with Malvika to work by the time we were up. And we woke up to the beautiful scene of Social Rehab. The Monalisa Apartments, at 100 feet road, house a hip and exceedingly happening Baers hostel. You enter the place to find colours strewn around. It will lift your mood in a minute.
Pop coloured cushion, pillows and bean bags with twinkling lights but what will catch your attention the most are the walls. Adorned with pieces of what the residents have left behind, the walls talk to you about wine, peace and memories from around the city.
The next time you plan to come to Bangalore make sure you stay at Social Rehab and yes this is a completely blatant advertisement and i’ll tell you why? You can get all reviews in the internet about the fooding and lodging but what you won’t get there is the wonderful experiences Social Rehab will bestow on you.
Wherever you walk around the place, you will see a part of what was left behind by the erstwhile travelers. And when you are there, you will be making memories of your own. Social Rehab is such that at least one Saturday night you are going to see Bangalore come alive. They never fail at hosting you in the best way possible and make sure your time is well spent.
By late morning we were ravenously hungry. Not knowing where to go, we decided to wander around in search of good food. With us was a young lad, no more than a high school graduate. His name was Lennard, however Shaggy would have been appropriate. When we first saw him, he was dressed in an olive green t-shirt and brown pants, absolutely like Shaggy from ScoobyDoo. In the morning we had bored him with DDLJ (no subtitles!).
He joined us in our quest for brunch. A little too much of walking around led us to a cozy restaurant that luckily served breakfast. Needless to say, aided by hunger, the best sauce, the meal turned out quite sumptuous.
In between the banter, we got to know that Lennard’s was on his customary India trip that high school graduates make just before college. Till now he had been to some parts of India and the most amazing thing he experienced was that while in India, he never had to have a meal alone.His testimony was endearing indeed.
See, that’s how we Indians are. We are going to badger you into our company. Not kidding! We are infectious people and more than that we are affectionate; even without realizing it. It’s in our upbringing that we always come together to have at least a meal, no matter how busy we are the entire day. And that reflected upon Lennard. I was really happy that a fellow human from England was taking home this very experience about India. Good job Desi people! :*
Time passed by quickly and we were ready for Hampi, our holiday destination. Finally in our bus to Hospet, we cozied up in our sleeper berths. Brice got a single seat far from us but that didn’t stop him from coming closer. Finding no one to switch seats with, poor guy felt so lonely that he slept on the bus floor between our berths! We realized it when one of us was about to get down and accidentally step on him (but didn’t).
We arrived at the Hospet bus stand at 4 in the morning. It was dark and empty bar a few auto rickshaws. We had to haggle with them regarding the fare given the fact that we had a new member in our group. Brice had brought in Anne who was travelling by herself to Hampi. She runs an NGO and is quite frail and lanky to be carrying a huge backpack but she seemed seasoned to it. Anne had beautiful grey hair with flecks of black and a persistent smile on the petite French face, that never quite seemed to fade.
At 250 bucks per autorickshaw, we traveled through what looked like a village. With a few bullock carts and fewer women carrying earthen pots filled with water, the scene seemed to have time-traveled to a 60s Bollywood movie – all in grayscale. The cold December morning was freezing. The wind stung my face but to the women it was just a breeze passing through their flailing sarees and clinking jewelry. It was almost as if a hero would materialize from our auto rickshaw, popping his head out, would serenade the ladies and the monotonous scene would break into a classic Musafir Hoon Yaaro kinda melody… Na ghar hai na thikana…