I am a Bastard, Ain’t I ?

Her words still weigh around my neck; I can hear them echo inside my head. Rewinded and replayed again and again with astonishing clarity. It’s been a couple of days and one long night and still the words persist. There was something in those words of hers that made them so heavy, may be it had to do with the way she had put it or may be it’s the simple truth it encompassed. Either be the case (though how much I ever deny it the later is the real truth, I just grow convinced of the fact) her words has stung me good and it still does stings even more.

What have you ever done? She asked

There was a flare in her eyes; it certainly was not pity. I need not see her to know that, her voice was just enough. 

What happened? 

I coughed up as innocent sounding as possible, but I knew that I was not going to get an answer and it was not going to be ending well.  Truth is that I had no idea what was headed my way!

I could start hearing her well hidden sobs grow louder; there was a sense of insecurity mounting in her heavy breaths.

Do you even love me? 

She asked through her sobs, breaking the melancholic silence that filled the air. 

All i could manage to do was to push out a slight hum through my throat that seemed to have gotten clogged almost instantly. Words were too heavy to push through.

What have you ever done for me? She continued after what seemed like eternity.

You were never there for me whenever I wanted you, 

She was no longer waiting for me to answer, as if she already knew that I would not have an answer for any of the questions she had for me.

Do you remember the time I fell down and sprained my ankle? She asked quizingly. 

How could I ever forget, it was her twentieth birthday and after all the deliberations of the celebration she was chasing her friend around her hostel veranda when she slipped and fell. Nothing serious ever happened to her. That itself was a great relief to me considering how subtle and sublime in construction she was. But worst was yet to happen, the very next day I was a total JERK, there is no point in hiding it when I myself know what I have done to her. She had a sprained ankle and I didn’t even bother to look at it, may be in intoxicated illusions she was healthy as a horse, but then again I was a total ‘jerk’. When every one knew she was hurt badly the one person whom she wanted by her side was not with her. And when she wanted to go to a doctor and when she asked to accompany her, I so harmlessly denied. I was an idiot then and I had no idea that I was being one. I so foolishly drew a dagger through the one heart that loved me, cared for me and looked out for me. I am a bastard, am I not? 

I knew I could get out of this with some sweet words and a lot of apologizing and some empty promises, but she is not some random fling of mine, she is the one. She deserved better, all I could think of was to let her pour out her heart and I knew that is what she wanted. Hours later we called and she seemed to have had no recollection of her words before. She had forgiven me, she had forgiven me along time ago, but when her heart got burden she just had to let it unload somewhere and I am lucky it’s me. But if that was all to it I wouldn’t have been writing this at all. 

The truth is when she said those words, it moved me. It moved me because I knew in my heart she deserved better. Upon hearing her soft sob, all those illustrious letters and poems embroidered with colorful words no longer mattered; they have transcended themselves into items of no real value. What value does the word love project when there is no love involved at all? I had to ask myself was I just all words and no real material, were all those speeches of love just Musings of an empty can, was I just one of those many substitutes that inhabit the earth? Had I become what I had set out not to become. Above all this question taunted me most, could I ever love anybody, and the prospects really do scare me now more than ever. I do stare into an abyss and now with trembling fingers and a racing heart I wonder whether i could turn it around or am I weighed down by the chains that’s I myself have crafted. The truth is I am a bastard and I know it, if only I could undo my doings.

When Gods Fall and Angels Die : The Diary of a Victim

I have thought long and hard, whether to write about this or not, especially when what I have to say has much to do with another person and his life. I wouldn’t want to damage a life that is not mine. Had it been my life I could have risked it, but not with another man’s life. But then what I had to tell had its own significance and due importance in my life that I just had to write about it. Otherwise it would just be an injustice to myself and my blog which has always sincerely housed by dark secrets and flamboyant triumphs alike. And then I decided I had to write and write such that no one is hurt but so is my heart poured out and emptied.
When it happened to you, I was happy that it was not my life, but now when it had happened to me I see no path that will cover my speedy escape, no path fast enough to run away from myself. It has happened to me, but how often does it happen to one? How often does it happen that some one whom you have so far placed in a castle of gold and ivory in your mind has just fallen short? How often does some one you so dearly love, you so idolized just does something really stupid? How often do they with that one action, annihilate a lifetime of memories? It’s cruel, it’s demeaning that such would happen, but isn’t life cruel and unforgiving to begin with.
It has now happened to me, it’s not my first time but so far they were people who had not touched my life in flesh and blood, so far they have been the ones that had the limelight shine on them, the ones that owned the celluloid and the ones that roamed the green fields. Its one thing that such surreal people blinded by fame be idiots by own making, but it’s an entirely different matter that someone so real, so close, so kith and kin do what that can but be termed ‘stupid’. The facts of the dark be lit by no more light because there lies no pleasure in opening wounds that has decided to heal just on the surface even after so long. But its never the moments of thoughtlessness that causes the real harm, it’s the grueling hours that you are left with yourself, its unforgiving and heartless in torture, the grueling in hell!
But after long hours and after many a sunrises and sunsets when I finally got back what bit was left of my broken mind in order, though the damage was done the one person I could not bear to forgive was myself, not after all that I could have done and I did not, not when I have turned it around many times in the many replays of life I lived. But then I asked myself, how and why did this happen? What is it that one thing that changed in life so fast? May be I was too sure, too soon. But was I fair, fair in placing all those responsibilities on a person’s shoulder without his consent, fair in believing that someone will keep the promises that he had not given. The truth is I do not know, there a part of paining head that begs to kill him and another part that despises no one but myself. the truth is I don’t know.
I had to write about it, its life and it never takes its turn for your liking. It plays hard and fast, it always has and it always will. Always so full of lies, lies there, lies here, lies everywhere. Its such a shame that we live a life full of lies, may be just may be life is just another lie, a lie that we all believe to be true, a lie we believe on convenience alone. Isn’t it shameful or I am just still in a haze. What ever be the state that is mine, the ugly fact is that when the gods do fall and when angels die it’s never a pretty sight to behold. It’s a rape, a rape of the human mind and the mirage of trust.

Colours : A visit to Arakal Palace

When I recently visited the Araikal Palace in KannurCalicut , Kerala, What fascinated me more than the rich history that the place holds and a cameo appearance in a recent local flick is the rich colours that the  place had to offer, The white palace with rich sky blue lining and its colourful windows drew me to my camera like a fly to the lamp. I would have be so wrong if i said that that’s all the place had to offer, but besides the colourful palace and its colourful windows were the colourful exhibition of paintings. A set of works by several local artists on the palace and its rich heritage, A fest of colours both intense and soothing. It was a colourful experience in all. A day of colour in the colourful city of kannur calicut!
For those of you who have no idea what ‘Araikal’ family means and holds in the history of India, A bit of an extract from Wikipedia ( I am no good in history, I flunked in more than once!). There you go a small but significant slice of India’s colonial history.
Arakkal kingdom (Kingdom of CannanoreSultanate of Lakshadweep and Cannanore) was a former city-state on the Malabar Coast, ruled by dynasty of the same name. The ruling King was called Ali Raja and the ruling queen was called Arakkal Beevi.[1] The king’s palace, which he purchased from the Dutch in 1663, was named Arakkal Palace after the ruling dynasty.

In the 17th century, one of the Padanairs (generals) of Kolathiri, Arayankulangara Nair, converted to Islam and adopted the name Muhammad Ali.[5] His wife was the daughter of Kolathiri, and they later came to be known as Arakkal.[5] Muhammad Ali continued in the service of the Kolathiris even after his conversion, and his successors known as the Mammali Kidavus were the hereditary Padanairs of the Kolathiri.[5] Around this time, many Muslim merchant families became financially influential in the Malabar region. When the Arakkal family took control of Laccadives, they achieved near-royal status.

For more info visit: Arakkal kingdom

( all photos are taken by me and distributed under the creative commons licence : feel free to share, modify, use , distribute and whatever you fancy(make some money off it, please be my guest) and if its okay with you add m  name to the credits otherwise forget it)

No Distance too Short !

When you look into her eyes and when you hold her fragile hand in your all you believe is one thing, just this one thing that no matter what the world decides to throw at you the very next second nothing can spoil this moment, because the moment is already perfect in itself . You believe no distance can ruin this for you anymore, you are here, she is here and then there is love, what more can you ever ask for ?
The truth is you always wanna be close to her, you believe have you had to leave her alone for just a fraction of a second and the wolves will descent. All you want is hold her close, feel her pulse, taste her lips, look in her eyes and let the world carry on because you have everything you ever wanted. You are here, she is here and this is all you ever wanted, ever. 

Photographs courtesy : Aziz
Email : info@airaphotography.com
Website : www.airaphotography.com

Badagara: A day in this Town

Badagara( Vadakara ) is a large city located about 50km north of Calicut. This city is a real sight seeing spot and has much adventure to offer. Now! Let’s cut the crap and get to business of knowing what’s to do and not to do in badagara. The city located along the highway, is very accessible by road and rail. To start of a day in badagara start off at Lokanarkavu Temple, Run to Sargalaya : The crafts village, skip Kunjali Maraikar Memorial and get to Kappad beach for the sun set.

Lokanarkavu Temple
I have a special attachment to this temple and the reasons are cheeky, Lokanarkavu is the family temple of my college sweet heart and I have reasons to like the temple. But I can tell you this on a normal day this is what a temple should be like, immersed in spiritual tranquility this place offers that inner peace that the most famous of temples can’t offer on any day. If you do want to see the temple with lots of people with it then visit during the temple festival which falls during the month of —-. This temple is greatly tangled with the rich past of the ‘chekavar’ and appears as a central character in many folklores of this great warrior race of northern kerala.  The temple is a complex of three small temples namely a devi temple, a shiva temple and a vishnu temple each with its own principal deities and I you can chat up the temple priests then you are sure to catch a few stories of this great warrior race.

Sargalaya: The Crafts Village in Iringal

This is the place you must visit if you are in Badagara; the crafts village offers an insight into the much acclaimed handicrafts of Kerala. Here they give such a close insight to the ways and methods of making these priceless art pieces. I personally got a close up on the working of how the tradition handloom sarees are woven and they give out their products for sail their. This place is a wonderful bounty of art pieces and they are on show and for purchase. Don’t worry the best is yet to come. This place has something for everyone.
At about hundred rupees per head you can get a boat ride in the adjacent lagoon, thought the first few stretches of the boast travel is rather bad almost boring but as you reach near the sea you will the sand banks where the sea meets the river. You could be also able to see a distant Isle in the see at 600 per head and a good amount of persuasion and compelling the guard you may get to go there but occasionally they do offer to that place, I am not sure when those days will. The place is exclusive. Oh! By the way, if you really are feeling a childlike do spent a few moments in the children’s part before the security shows you the way out. Enjoy the lake and the rocks in the old quarry and if you are three in the right time they will have many cultural events.

Kunjali Maraikar Memorial
This is a place you must not go to unless you are a die hard fan of India’s Maritime past. This place is located several minutes inward of Sargalaya and offers brief insight into the history of the naval chiefs of Zamorin’s. The miniature museum only has a couple of swords, a dozen cannon balls and even tinnier house. Trust me it’s neither worth the time nor the money spent. But the other ting that could interest you would be the Olive Ridley Turtle farm where they incubate and protect the Turtle eggs and ensures the return of the hatchlings to the sea. Visit here only during the migratory season otherwise there is nothing much to see either.

Kappad Beach
Kappad beach is where you can get to go at the end of the day, enjoy a quiet sunset spent time resting at the shores, but don’t dare go into the ocean. It’s a bit dark and muddy and I don’t prefer you go in and I don’t suppose you would either. One more thing don’t expect any tides the seas this side is rather quiet.

Nilambur : In the Teak Lands

A surprisingly scenic train journey from Cherukara, a small sleepy town about 20km from Shoranur, Palghat where I was housed took us to Nilambur. A sleepy town housed among the clouds atop a rather normal looking town. Little can we tell by looks of the town that it housed one of the natural wonders of the world and it would never cross your mind even once that this is the city whose woods furnish the regal halls of the Buckingham Palace. The railway station is beautiful in its own respect, the woods, the people they are different unlike our concrete jungles. But one thing I mush stress that I cannot tell of any particular time that will be just perfect to visit Nilambur, every season has its own small advantages and the bitter misses, but I can tell you this from experience , never visit Nilambur on a Monday.
There are three magnificent places that are worth seeing in Nilambur, The only Teak museum in India; the first of its kind in India, Cannoli Plot which is home to the teak that furnished the Buckingham Palace, The Addiyanpara waterfalls. On Monday the first two of the lot does not open, so not on a Monday as I said earlier.

The Teak Museum
The Tree shaped direction boards along the sides of the road is sure to take you to the right place, However if you could arrange yourself a taxi for the whole day its sure to lift the luggage of your back and you could finish off Nilambur in a day and move on and just one more thing, please don’t may more than Rs. 4000 for a day. The teak museum is the oldest of its kind in the world and the only one of its kind in India. The Teak museum houses a spectacular Teak Trump that greats the visitors to the mystery that shrouds the majestic tree called Teak. There are many answers to the many questions about teak that you might ever have, this wonderful place even has about 300 species of butterflies that live among the Teak trees. There are many exhibits in the museum that speaks volumes about the mysterious plant and its many property and the historical significance of the place and rich history that spans over 150 years.

Cannoli Plot
It is an adobe for the nature enthusiasts in you, Located as a part of the forest departments reserve land, this place offers a unique and unparalleled view of the worlds oldest teak plantation, which was established way back in 1840’s. The plantation has the world’s oldest teak tree and a suspension bridge across the Challiyar River. The plantation has an 800 meter long scenic path way among the oldest teak trees in the worlds. The preferred time to visit here is in the evening as there will be many butterflies.
Addiyanparra Waterfalls
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Unlike the places I mentioned above I call talk more authoritatively on this place as I actually went here as I visited Nilambur on a Monday, The place is an exquisite locale located some 10-15km away from the city and is very beautiful. The thing about this place is you can visit here in two times either during the rainy season when there will be lot of water in the river and it will be a mammoth phenomenon to watch or you could view it during the dry season when you could really explore the path of the river, climb over boulders and play with water as much as you like, I personally prefer the dry season, there will be lot to do than just watch. The beauty of this spot is that the stream and the fall can be easily divided into two, the upper part and the lower part, the upper part consists of boulders and the shushing stream that passes through its passes and the lower part is mostly water ponds and everything a fall has to offer. Beware of whirlpools and deep holes there are a few such holes that can suck you down and drown you. I prefer you don’t go anywhere near the rapids for a swim. The place is treacherous to the core.
Accommodation and travel
Reaching Nilambur is easy by air land and rail, the nearest airport is Karipur International terminal Malapuram, Buses are frequently available to Nilambur, but the most preferred mode of transport is the train as it will take you to the core of the city with ease.
Accommodation can be availed in any of these places, I could not find any better accommodation in Nilambur.
1.       Hotel Mahendrapuri
2.       Peeves Nilambur Manor
3.       KTDC Tamarind 



A Series of Fortunate Events

When I woke up at 5 am today, I knew I could expect great things today, and guess what I was not the least bit wrong. We were a trio on a destination less journey, not exactly but it was the farthest thing from a well planned holiday that I was ever on. The fun fact about this holiday is that its kind of a journey to most of my friends birthday and it’s the first time I am going to see my girlfriends home. And guess what I decided to do a travelogue of it on my blog.
Today, was just as bleak as any would have been on any bleak day, the railway station was like a set taken out of the many country side flicks that I have seen. The biggest man made structure that I have seen in the periphery is a small thatched building and I suppose that’s the railway station. (Of course it was!). The morning was much uneventful, the long winding roads that took us to my friends home was nothing out of the ordinary, nor were the occasional shops that stood by the street. There was not much that said that the hours to follow housed much adventure.
A narrow muddy road took as close to our house of residence, a beautiful villa stationed amidst many trees, with chirping birds and hustling winds. The house was a sight to see on its own regard. Though much is said of the beauty of the house, what made its truly special is what makes it a real happy home, it love and car, both of which it had in abundance. I should say the sheer location of the house and its radiance sends out this message much profoundly.

Thirumandhamkunnu Devi Temple
No journey in the states of India is ever complete without a visit to the local temple; to be engulfed in the spiritual aura of tradition Hinduism and the tranquil air of the world around the place are birth taking. The much talked about temple and the many lives that it touched has had finally come together. There was even a slight inclination to astrology lately, no! we were just kidding around with a palm reader, nothing special I always wanted to know what they would say to the many people they come across and looking into your future is always fun. The fact she said so many things and a few she did get right and some there were no was to validate the judgments. This Temple was unique, unique in the fact that this fine example of traditional temple architecture offers no direct view of the idols unlike other temples. The many stairs that lead to the temple has many a million stories that link up to my life and my family.
The Unnamed Hill
The journey back from the temple would have been no less interesting than death. Little did I know that the adventure had just begun, and a beautiful hill full of infinite adrenaline was waiting for us to arrive. The suggestion to go to a rather unknown hill to the outside world came to as much of a surprise and I was rather skeptical in going to a place that had so less to offer when we could rather spend time at a place more worthwhile. But nevertheless I decided to go anyway; the journey to the hill was as always just as bland and boring. But things took a real turn uphill when we came at the foot of the hill. There she was, standing majestically tall and arrogant. 

The ascent was amazing, as I lead the way uphill with just gut feeling to guide, the path were just as strange as the hills could be. Jumping from rock to rock and climbing through small alley ways among the tall dry grasses that surround the whole place. The ascent took us through some rather intriguing moments of slippery and some breathe taking vistas among the way. It did surprise me that the small hill had so much fun to offer, there were moments of frivolous pleasure and there were moments of real danger, one false move would have had as roll down to endless abyss (rather exaggerated).

We spent some fabulous moments atop the hill and I could but proudly say that I was the first among my friends to scale the mountain (hill) and conquer the peak (hill really sounds boring now, right?).  The moments cannot written down in word and neither would I ever be so cruel to the exhilarating memories we made atop that grassy hill, those were the best of times and it would be rather insensitive of me to kill those bitter sweet memories by the injustice of penning them down and killing the moments. The descent was just as exciting but nothing would ever compare to the minutes we flew away in the wind.

Moments are yet to be made some that we like to cherish in our lonely times, savoring the honey that seeps out of its many pores and some that we boast among our friends and take upon ourselves as moments of great pride and prestige that we so solemnly show those battle scars away with great joy. These are the moments that talk to us over time and remind you time and again of the reason why it all exist. Let me remind the one thing today taught me with great pride and joy.

Life is for the living, Dying for the lively, Make life worth while.