Pushkarani, like Aryaman says it: Hampi 6 Dec, 2015

Early morning ding ding ding!

I see Aayushi up and about. I love this about her. However much she might have partied the previous night, she will always be the first one up and about the next morning, dressed and all. For Aayushi, hangovers are so passé – seasoned player I say!

After a good breakfast and fooling around in other people’s hammocks…

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We hopped into autorickshaws and were all set for the day’s excursion…

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Today’s itinerary took us to the King’s lavatory. Oh yes! The mighty king and queen had a lavatory that is now a tourist spot. It wasn’t fancy but it was huge. Big boulders and bricks made out of rocks were placed to build bathrooms for the Royals – hughness for the Highness!

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I could make absolutely no sense out of such a massive area being used as a bath. Did the entire town come out to have baths at the same time? Or did they have a sort of ceremonial bath? Or was this place different from what it looks today? Was there more to this place than big rocks put together and a board explaining the measures? History and sense put aside we decided to make some good memories.

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Reminder: When a friend calls you for a group hug, you GROUP HUG!

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***

The next destination was the temple with singing pillars. The rickshaw dropped us off at the entrance of what looked like a huge sanctuary. With big and dense trees around, the compound looked something out of a Jurrassic era movie.

 

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Half way on the way we stopped at a pond. Part of the entire architecture, the pond had steps all around it and a small hooded stage erect right at the centre.

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And this also had a name. Let Aryaman point it out to you.

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We sat there with our feet dipped in the pond. The water was surprisingly cool as compared to the warm weather. It was all very calm until Priti decided to not be so. Something ticked her off and she sat on a step lower than us. I got a feeling that her tick hadn’t completely gone away and that is exactly when she went a step further down. She was in the water waist down. She could feel the algae at her feet. I and Aayushi held her so that she didn’t slip. Just as she found her grip, she descended and dipped! It had some of us aghast and some amused. It’s fun watching Priti just be at times. I wonder if she is the mellowed version of Geet from Jab We Met. Remember the scene when she sat with Aditya and suddenly felt like “Paani kitna acha hai na”?

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The temple was like the kind you study about in history. The sanctum sanctorum resides at the centre with numerous other small shrines at the periphery. The guide saw us through the various details which we otherwise would have missed – tiny sculptures that took like a different animal from different sides, stories carved out of stone and ofcourse, pillars that sing. These pillars were made of varying girth and depth and when beaten with chandan sticks would emulate music. No need to bring you instruments to the darbar, architects got that covered!

Meanwhile, some loons try to drive the rath. Just look at us. Seriously, we need some lessons in physics!

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And here’s Malvika doing it right!

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On our way back, we convinced the rickshaw walla to let us drive and surprisingly, he agreed. In fact, he seemed very amused by it. Driving a rickshaw is not a big deal you know, and to me it felt a lot easier than driving a car. A rickshaw has the safety of a four wheeler and the ease of having the steering and gear at the same place. It’s perfection!

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***

Malvika, Pratik, Aryaman and Aayushi went back, leaving us in Hampi. Long story short, they had an upcoming Monday morning and we didn’t. Of all the cool stuff we did after they left, includes me rolling my first and the three of us making an open-air theatre in the mountains! Oh yes, you read me right. Deep has some really amazing gadgets – a mini projector with a tripod is one of them. Fitted with a laptop and his bluetooth speaker, we turned the boulders of Hampi into a theatre.

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People stopped by to watch and were quite amazed. It would have been nice to have gotten the town out at our theatre but that’s a story to be written another time.

I laid back on the rock. The entire sky was lit up with a million stars or maybe more. There was no pollution and no clouds. In my sleepy head, the sky reminded me of a dress I had when I was little – glitter on royal blue velvet. Does this side of the sky have so many stars or are we city/town folks living in a fog? Everytime I blinked, the stars seem to change position. After a while I couldn’t keep a check and so I decided to let us all be. A star dimmed here, a star shone there and in my mind, I felt light…

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