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The Ganpati Photowalk

It’s that time of the year when everyone in India welcomes the Elephant God into their house, fondly known as Ganpati. 10 days of every Indian’s life revolve around the worship of the God.  Ganesh has been an annual feature in our house for as long as I can remember, we don’t get in the clay idol, we have an idol made of silver which we offer prayers to. As kids, mom would make us clean the idol and also decorate temples made of cardboard or Styrofoam. We would also get a whole lot of guests who came to our house during these 10 days to offer prayers and generally socialize with the family.  Over the years our beliefs have changed, we are no longer actively involved in the ceremonies pretty much Mom, Dad, Uncle and Aunty who manage the same. We on the other hand definitely go to see the awesome idols around where we live and take pictures creating our very own unique Ganpati Photowalk.

The biggest challenge with the photowalk is the crazy and erratic Mumbai rains, I personally don’t like my camera and gear getting wet and hence have to wait for the right time to get out there. Saturday began with crazy rains in the morning but eventually the day turned out to be sunny, at about 4:00pm I decided to head out for the photowalk, please note the objective was clear take pictures of Idols, a few minutes away from our house is Grant Road vegetable market, this also houses the biggest Ganesh idol in our area – I was pleasantly surprised to see that there was no security in and around the Pandal (temporary temple), people moved in an out easily and it was not mad crowded, I quickly setup my camera and started taking shots, to my surprise nobody disturbed me or said not to take pictures, instead they were more than happy to let me keep shooting, the kids there also volunteered to look after my bag so I could move around easily -Absolutely awesome

From there on every pandal I went to I was extended the same courtesy, my next destination was Grant road station, the Ganpati there was lit up, so time to crank ISO and shoot, note I hate using flash, I think it takes away from the reality of the image. I retraced my steps from the station towards the BMC station at D-Ward, this area has always had very creative idols, I was surprised this time around instead of going creative, the committee there had gone for a simpler much larger idol, it was very impressive. This pandal also had some kids playing carom; they were very excited when I took their picture. Next destination Papanas Wadi, this is a small lane next to my house, their theme eco friendly Ganesh, I did not realise I had friends here, these were kids who I had grown up with, in turn I was treated like a star, they cleared the floor and let me take pictures and fed me a whole lot of sweet meats. Next I moved onto a lesser known destination, this is a small bylane near Nana Chowk, they generally get a small idol but it is always very unique, this time around was exactly the same. Moving uphill I got to Kemps Corner, the Pan Gali idol was a black and gold idol and was huge, post taking pictures I moved towards my final 3 destinations August Kranti Maidan (Tejpal)  and Geeta building and old Gamdevi.

The final destinations are also the oldest as far as we are concerned, they have been housing idols long before it was fashionable to host them. The Tejpal idol was simple but they had surrounded it by envelopes of Ganpati, to my suprise there was nobody around the mini pandal, forgot to mention, I missed the Ganpati which use to be there at the Kharegat intersection, don’t know why it was not there. Anyways moving on the Geeta building Ganesh, was mounted on the shoulders of Hanuman, very different from anything I had seen so far. The volunteers there let me get close to the idol and take pictures, by now I was losing light so cranked up the ISO even more. From here I quickly rushed to Old Gamdevi, this idol was surrounded by women who were waiting for the evening Aarti, I did not waste time here, moved quickly and shot a few images and headed home. All in all the photowalk was an amazing experience the pandals are amazingly peaceful and people don’t bother you, also there are no annoying kids going ‘uncle take photo, my photo please’ and so on.  Really enjoyed this walk, and will definitely do this again on the day of immersion, this time around with my zoom lens.

Do check out our awesome Slideshow of Ganesh Pics below – Shot using a Nikon D5100 with a 18-55mm lens

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Posted by on September 24, 2012 in Trips & Rides

 

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The Super Bike & Food Weekend

It’s been a while since I wrote about the weekend that was; the weekend that just went by was pretty damn awesome & so I decided to write about the same. Friday evening started off with some general chilling at home didn’t do much just marathoned Supernatural season 7 with Rachita. Also the plan for next days lunch was being figured with Ritika. Before I forget, Friday evening we also started playing Sleeping Dogs on the Xbox360 which was awesome. The game has a brilliant feel and has hints of Yakuza & Shenmue, 2 of our all time favorite games!

Goo & Avenjer ignore the cycle 🙂 Lol!!!

Sleeping Dogs on the Xbox360

Astro!!!

Saturday, though, began with a bang as I had 2 bikes at my disposal – Ekta’s Royal Enfield & my Bajaj Avenger – Ekta was in Baroda for the weekend & had left her bike at my place. Gaurav & I took the bikes out for a ride which was totally awesome! We rode past Haji Ali & Worli Seaface braving the rains; when we started there wasn’t an iota of rain, but when we reached Peddar Road it started drizzling; Gaurav & I decided to continue as the drizzle wasn’t fazing us. On the way back from Haji Ali, though, there was a decent downpour which we managed & reached home safe. Post some general chilling, shower, etc. we played some more Sleeping Dogs on the Xbox360, exploring the open world finishing mini missions, etc. Come 9:30am we needed to take Astro to the vet for a general check up & then meet Ritika, Mihir & Yooti for lunch. We were done at the vet by about 11:00am & proceeded for lunch after dropping Ash home :-). So lunch was going to happen at Soul Fry Casa, a restaurant serving Goan food at Fountain / Kala Ghoda. Ritika, though, was not informed about the same, as whenever we have decided to go to this restaurant or discussed going there, something or the other has gone wrong. This time we decided to keep the POA a suprise. Ritzzzz met Mihir at Churchgate station on the pretext of going to some place around that area and once Mihir got her around the restaurant he whisked her in. She was pleaseantly surprised, if I may say so myself.

Love the Ambiance at Casa Soul Fry

Beer!!!

Pickle!!!

Moving onto the restaurant which has a brilliant old world charm with memoriabilia across the walls; also the furniture is from an era which you just dont see nowadays. The plates & glasses you get are of copper, menu has a good balance of Veg, Non Veg & Sea Food. We decided to start off with a few drinks – I was having beer, Mihir had ordered a brilliant sugarcane based cocktail, Ritika was having a watermelon Martini, Yooti ordered a Vodka based cocktail the name of which i cannot remember & Rachita who doesn’t drink alco was having a mocktail. Ritika & Mihir had already ordered some Prawns & Rawas, Rachita added to the same by ordering some chicken moelho. Please note here, Mihir & I haven’t had prawns in about 20 years as I have an allergy to the same. Though once the food was on the table, we decided to try the prawns which were exceptional and also eat the Rawas which was divine. Lunch ordered was some chicken in red gravy & because we ate shell fish everyone got super excited that there was no allergic reaction and ordered a crab sukha with some nans. The food was simply awesome! We went through everything & loved every moment of it. Special mention to the Naans which are the best I have ever had. If you are in the fountain area, then you must try Soul Fry Casa it is CUMPOLSORY!!!

Awesome Spread!!!

Then headed home, slept for a bit, while Ritika & Rachita went shopping. Evening dinner was Falafal which Rachita had made. The brilliance of the same cannot be explained. After dinner, watched some UFC on Sony Six, then moved to Supernatural and then passed out.

Sunday Bike Ride!!!

Yummy!!!!

Sunday morning started off with an early morning bike ride on Ekta’s Royal Enfield aka Goo, which was followed by another bike ride on my Bajaj Avenger, aka Avenjer. The weather was perfect, cloudy skies accompanied by some sensational winds…. Marine Drive, Nariman Point, Haji Ali & Worli Seaface were passed on both bikes one after the other…. rode for a good hour & half :-). Once home, finished Astro’s bath, then played Sleeping Dogs again for a bit, Also helped Mihir pack as he was heading for a week’s vacation. Lunch in true gujju style was sev tameta nu shak (fried gram dough noodles in tomato gravy); then it was nap time. Woke in the afternoon, watched some Supernatural again, had a few beers. For dinner, Rachita decided to make some super duper awesome boiled egg sandwiches with tomatoes, iceberg lettuce, onions, her blend of secret herbs & eggs marinated in mayo & mustard. Matlab mouth watering awesomeness it was! Again watched some more episodes of Supernatural and then passed out. All in all, a brilliant food & bike weekend 🙂

 
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Posted by on August 27, 2012 in Helmets & More

 

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Incidence & Coincidence

Friday evening, decided to go to the local drinking hole, Mini Club House with Mihir & Vishal; on reaching there, was told the place was shut and would open by 7pm. Oh! here i forgot to mention we went there by 4pm. Decided to dunk the idea of drinking out, saved some money and decided to drink at home. Bought Haywards 5000, went home, got shit-faced and closed the day.

St7 Totally Superb!

The Saturday morning bike ride as always, was past worli seaface, shivaji park, upto bandra reclamation and then back to nariman point; though on the way back, an interesting incident happened wherein, past shivaji park I noticed a Hyosung St7 – dude! that’s one killer bike! Like an excited kid, I started chasing the bike. This is where it got interesting – wherein the St7 rider and I started riding together without uttering a word. This was so super awesome! We also had enough people staring at us past prabhadevi and century bazaar. Finally, before he went his way at passport office and I went towards city bakery, we gave each other a thumbs up & cruised away… Total feeling of brotherhood had happened!

Pretty Average Pizzeria

That’s Vibha

Got home, decided to go to Pizzeria, a local pizza joint at marine-drive. They serve the most awesome Bombay masala pizza (regular cheese pizza with Indian herbs). Reaching pizzeria, we realized the place has been totally re-done and looked quite cool; the same, though, could not be said about their service and food as it was horrifying – firstly the service and then the food. They have changed the recipe for the Bombay Masala Pizza… Immediately called up a Shlok (friend) with whom we have eaten 5 Bombay Masala’s and have been regulars to this restaurant. Spammed social media about the disappointment and the general stuff.Also note Shlok has a Royal Enfield Twin Spark 350cc.  Coincidentally, also met  my old boss and friend, Vibha, who was visiting the place as well. She also had a feeling where she thought she would meet me (premonition moment)! Cribbed to her also about the service and food, then took a photo of hers to feature on this write up check the same 🙂 Post that, came home & crashed.

This is Sensational!

Evening was spent eating amazing frankie made by the Mrs. Also ate icecream bon bons and watched Gone starring Amanda Sefried to end the day. Sunday morning’s bike ride was past lower parel, dadar and back. Also took Mihir for some photography to marine-drive, grant road vegetable market and mahalakshmi. He also went to haji Ali Durga which was fun and scary & he is going to have a post on the same with some awesome photo’s soon. Most of the day was spent watching movies & lazing in bed having Caronas. Saw Runnning Man starring Arnold, a bit of Supernatural & then watched Limitless starring Bradly Cooper which was brilliant to end the day. Started off Monday by hating them i.e. Monday’s. Post that brilliant bike ride happened as the weather was awesome & to make the day interesting, have dinner planned at the in-laws. Hopefully, I won’t hate Mondays that much this week 🙂

Sunday Morning Photography

 
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Posted by on May 21, 2012 in Trips & Rides

 

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