Nareshwar

vastness

@ Nareshwar – On the banks of river Narmada

Not  a popular tourist attraction-very calm and peaceful place located near  Bharuch , Gujarat on the banks of river Narmada is Nareshwar. Main highlight of Nareshwar is the Rang temple – constructed by the followers of the saint Rang Avdhoot fondly  remembered and addressed as “Bapji “.

Shri Rang Avadhoot Maharaj was a prominent 19th century divine saint. He played an important role in spreading Datta-panth (path shown by Lord Dattatreya) in Gujarat, India. Disciple of Vasudevanand Saraswati he was also an eminent social worker who had joined the freedom struggle with Mahatma Gandhi.

Rang Mandir as I have know for over 2 decades has evolved from being a remotely located, difficult to travel -where the roads used to be closed during the monsoon season in India, a place only frequented by saints and pilgrims and meditators to a locally and nationally known temple.

If you are looking for some quite peaceful lone time, Nareshwar is definitely the place to be. Temple is closed in the afternoon from 12:00 to 3:00. Prasad (lunch) is served at 12:00 in the noon. There are rooms in the temple and many hotels close by if you decide on spending more than a day.

Coming from Bharuch, once you enter the NH48/64 continue for about 20km then make a right onto Nareshwar Road ( near sansrod village) and about 18 km on nareshwar road will take you to the destination. (https://www.google.co.in/maps/dir/Bharuch+Junction,+Railway+Station+Road,+Railway+Colony,+Bharuch,+Gujarat/Nareshwar+Dham,+Sayar,+Gujarat/@21.8053549,73.0432631,12z/am=t/data=!3m1!4b1!4m13!4m12!1m5!1m1!1s0x3be020b677112559:0x9508524eb89d9076!2m2!1d72.9993858!2d21.704151!1m5!1m1!1s0x395ff0e3f600d3d1:0x438fa1140b42032b!2m2!1d73.2348838!2d21.8722502)

A frequent chanting/salutation  you would hear in temple and passers by ” Shree or Jai Gurudev Dutt!” where Guru is referring the saint.

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Happy eating Mumbai 🙂 

Ms. Tomato

While the year  2016 has ended , I was reminded of an exercise I was assigned while serving at a  restaurant in the US, share  one thing that happened in last week which made you happy? While 2016 was ending lot many things happened in my life , in fact the year was full of changes , adjustments, shifts . If I were to pick one incident what would it be, and there was no doubt in my mind for the entire year of 2016, it was when I met Ms. Tomato – I do not know her real name but she was so adorable , so lovable and so red … just like a tomato..

Few days back I was out shoe shopping on a lazy sunday afternoon when this tiny little girl walks up to me with  a pair of shoes in her hand and lifts them up high and says ” these are nice” , oh how I wish I could enact it while i write this. She was with her her mom and grandma who were watching her from a distance and extremely puzzled. I waited for a moment , thought she might pull away , she must have been looking for her mom but she stood there with shoes still held high , looking at me and all I could say was “yeah they are”. She took down the shoes , sat on the floor and started to put them on…. In the mean time her mom walked up to her and I moved away neither did I turn around nor did she call out, she became busy trying her shoes… Well, that was Ms. Tomato – the highlight of 2016 and one incident that I might choose as the moment when I have felt happiest in 2016!!!!!!!!!!!

In Aamchi Mumbai as a mumbaikar would say!

 

Can you fall in love twice? I moved from Washington D.C.  after having lived there for 11 years and like every other Indian, work brought me to Mumbai . Summer -hot and humid Mumbai and not able to find a place to stay was how I welcomed myself !

Kandivali, Bandra , Andheri, Goregoan, Malad , Santa Cruz , Kurla , Powai  ,  Vikroli ,Ville Parle , you name it – the places I have searched for a decent living! Having found a place to stay – was a relief with Mumbai rains right around the corner. I thought what they show in bollywood was true – you come to Mumbai feel the heat of summer – see the mumbai rains and fall in love with the city and before you know you have spent the rest of your life in Mumbai! On the contrary I ended up visiting doctors getting treated for cold and cough!

When I was in my early 20’s I fell entrapped by the liveliness  of New York but after about 8 years or so fell in love with calmness and serenity of D.C. Despite the weather, falling sick and not so happy work place I still haven’t given up on Mumbaikar’s “aamchi mumbai” I wonder as to what that is am I falling in love again  ??!

 

Shirdi – SaiBaba

https://www.shrisaibabasansthan.org/INDEX.HTM

I am not a big believer in following rituals of worship for the most part because they are inculcated in one either out of fear of punishment or the necessity to do so. I have been to various religious place like Hindu Temples, Jain Mandirs, Gurudwaras,Dargah , Church . The most peaceful place that I found so far was church, it takes very little effort on your side to search for inner peace because the place itself is so quiet. I had heard a lot about the Shirdi -Saibaba temple located in the Shirdi village in the Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra. I took a cab to Shirdi from Bombay which is about 4 -41/2 hours drive. It took about 3 hours waiting in the queue to darshan or reach the place where Shri Saibaba idol is placed, meaning it was crowded. You spend about half a minute to a minute’s time for the darshan, strangely enough, though the ratio of wait time to darshan time is unimaginable, I was able to connect to myself within that one minute. I do not know whether its the  doing of miracle stories that I have watched on television, or vibration of the land around that gives you the feeling of tranquility. I would recommend visiting once with lot many places for boarding and lodging, small shops around to shop and cab for ~Rs5000 if shared from Mumbai is not a bad deal and Ofcourse the temple management staff has put in ample efforts to keep things organized and made refreshments available while waiting in the queue.

 

Everything is online!

Few years ago, I remember telling a friend that should you need anything, I am just a phone call away –  connectivity seemed to exist or at least hypothetically!! I recently moved to India, and in my hometown where  once “in-person” was  an IN thing I got introduced by my cousin to the website “Just Dial” http://www.justdial.com/ Whatever you need is available starting from food, car rentals , daily grocery, housing, travel &ticketing, education information, other services. You name it and you got it!

Damn ! the technological advancement “a friend” got replaced by “Just Dial” 🙂