Two days before someone shared one video with me. Video looks like taken in some foreign conference & the speaker in the video cracked one joke on Indian attitude when money comes in picture. The joke is, once upon a time great scientist Einstein was travelling through airplane & there was Indian seating next to him. Then to pass the time Einstein asked to play one game with that guy & he said I will ask you one question if you fail to answer then you will give me 5 dollar & when you asked me question & I failed to answer I will give you 500 dollar, then Indian guy said fine. First Einstein asked the question & Indian guy failed to answer and gave 5 dollar to Einstein. After that Indian guy asked question tell me the thing which goes up with three legs & comes down with four legs, after thinking a lot Einstein failed to answer & gave 500 dollar to Indian guy and asked same question back to him. Then without thinking Indian guy forwarded 5 dollar to Einstein.
I don’t know in the above joke what he want to show either silliness of Einstein or Indian guy greed towards money or how their brains start running when money comes in picture. Yes partially it is true but for sure Indians have some very good qualities which comes from their heart & nothing else matter at that time. I am going to share few small small incidents in my life here & I am sure everyone of you one or the other way definitely had such experiences in your life too.
First is when I was traveling through public transport in six seater from waked to warje. Driver of that vehicle was looking like too much worried I don’t know for what may be for his family, for education of his children’s & provide two time full food to his family. In that tense condition most of the passengers shouting on him & he was getting more disturbed, I can able to see that clearly on his face. I don’t know what I felt at that moment & at my stop when I was getting down, I handover-ed the 100 Rs/- note to him, hugged him & told him don’t give back me the change just take some sweets & snacks to his children’s while going back to home.
Second incident happen when I was stuck in traffic at Nal Stop Signal. There few small child’s may be 7 to 8 years old was showing their experty in circus like adventures rather than begging for money or food. I loved their humbleness, fighting attitude against their condition, most beautiful thing in them was cute smiles on their faces that time also where they don’t have proper roof to live, food to eat, cloths to wear. They had a warm mesmeric charm on their faces & suddenly I took 100 Rs/- note and gifted them for their show & shook hand with so many blessings for their bright future.
Third time I was met with lovely incident & it happened with me recently. I was going to magarpatta city from new sangvi via khadki, on that way near to khadki station at signal one family child’s were selling the Pens to the daily travelers through that route. From them one child girl may be three to four years old was going towards every biker & car drivers asking them to buy her pens. Suddenly she came to me, after looking at her sweet face, without resisting my hand I just took 50 Rs/- note & given her & in return she gave me pen. That time because of her submissive smile & graciousness that pen was more than any Parker or Mont Blanc Pen. After giving her that note expressions on her face looking like she don’t know how much it is & she looked at her elder brother, I too followed her eyes & looked at her brother & just said have it no need to give back any change then he took more pen in his hand and forwarded to me, I just loved that honesty & reaction from him. I just stopped him & thanked him for the pen I got from his sister then the broad smile on their faces gave me one of the precious gift in my life.
I just want say here that this kind of people are also available in our country so rather than focusing on some drawbacks of our please focus on good things around. Rather than saying don’t see bad, don’t talk bad & don’t listen bad I would love to say See Good !!! Talk Good !!! & Listen Good .
After Aashdhi Ekadashi on beautiful Sunday (17th July 2016) morning with Apex Adventures, I went to the waterfall rappelling event near Torna Fort Base Village Velhe. This waterfall rappelling point is few minutes away from village. After picking up all participants, we left the Pune at 7:00 AM & reached there at 10:00 AM & the instructor Akshay Gokhle came there to guide us all. All together there were 70 members, 30 from our group 30 from other group & 10 instructors.
It was the wonderful day out there greenery all over the place, beautiful waterfalls & like icing on the cake slightly raining was there. To reach that point of waterfall rappelling, we crossed two small water flows & one beautiful waterfall on that flow. We enjoyed there a lot while coming back.
At rappelling point Akshay given us all the instructions & said to come one by one for amazing adventure. There was two ropes to get down through waterfall & both were properly fixed & two instructors at the top two at down to help us all for rappel down & two instructors were helping us to fix the harness, helmet & gloves for our safety while rappelling down. Don’t go at the edges of the waterfall it is very slippery so be careful.
Beauty of plateau was enhanced because of mysteriously attractive white flowers. Later I was searching for proper place to click snaps of all participants while doing rappelling. While searching for those places we found one small engaging waterfall. There we had few clicks & decided three places to click the snaps one at the top second at the mid way of plateau & last one at the down.
Then one by one all the participants started one of the thrilling event of their life waterfall rappelling. The faces of the guys at the start was very nervous, full of tension was looking on there faces, they were asking so many queries to the instructors available there like what is the safety level? how to get down step by step? & so many they were asking questions like child. Those who were in between the waterfall while getting down & we all were encouraging them to go ahead. At the end gorgeous smile on their faces was showing their joy, happiness for some kind of achievements in life. Some one was telling me can we do it twice please please, some one was asking me for more such kind of adventures. I can see the tremendous joy and freedom in their eyes after spending an enthusiastic day, it fueled all of us with happiness, courage & fight our daily small small challenges with smile on face.
Thank you thank you thank you so much Akshay Gokhale & all free lancers for guiding us. Also many thanks to all participants to share this delightful day with me.
- Photo Credit to Rahul Chandure, Amol Kotkar.
- Go in full sleeve cloths, also have extra pair of cloths.
For the first time in my life I heard the Dhol Taase Beats at Pune in 2008. Because of my classes I wasn’t able to attend any group play of Dhol Taase that time. I heard it on the way to my classes & feel the magic of it. That time within one month I left the Pune, so that wish of mine to visit any group play & listen it neatly remained uncompleted. Then after completing my graduation when i came back to Pune in search of job unintentionally again heard that sound of Dhol Taase. It attracted me towards it & stopped there itself why because that music enthralled me. There I collected some more information like where do I get to see different different group plays, where do I get the best performance/play & only one answer to all such questions I got is on Ganpati Visarjan go to Laxmi Road, Alka Chowk, Tilak Road. In 2011 I was fully focused on my job searching & interviews so I didn’t got the chance again.
Finally after getting job & regular work schedule in 2012, I ticked one of my dream that is roaming around all the Peth areas of Pune on Ganpati Visarjan Day, while enjoying the Dhol Taase Beats & other numerous things. Seriously I got real experience of one sentence on Pune “Ganesh Festival is like Diwali in Pune”. On every road in every lane there is Ganesh Mandal with so many of decorations, lightings & ultimate plays or dramas or views of some or the other ancient or western cultures or plays of Dhol Taase groups.
So finally on Ganesh Visarjan day of 2012 that is 29th September, I left the home at 10:00 AM in the morning, those days I used to live at Aple Ghar Society near Chandan Nagar Bypass. Via PMT buses I reached the Pune Municipal Corporation Depot at 11:30 AM due to huge traffic & from there rather than taking any transport I preferred to go by walk towards Dagdusheth Temple & my excitement came into reality in the form of crowd, so many dhol taase groups playing various tracks like “Sher Shivraj Song by Kavi Bhushan”, “Kaloa”, “Gajar”, “Nashik Dhol”, “Dholi Bajja” & so many with tremendous energy & happiness. Some guys from the group were playing the Zhanja & Tole. All were playing these instruments in a beautiful synchronization, the moves of their hands, there legs while walking or playing the Dhol, Taase, Zhanja & Tole was at exact same time. In one group there would be at least 100 to 200 members were there. Those who were not playing anything they are also contributing by providing water to those who are playing, by making border so that no one from outside will distract the play.
While plying it some guys were in different getups but attractive like full beard & long hairs looking like old time kings & on top of that Pheta which is looking like jewel in the crown. Some guys were playing dhols in full madness they were dancing along with it & simultaneously all this in synchronization too. After watching so many groups on Shivaji Road, NC Kelkar Road, Tilak Road, Kumthekar Road, Vasantrao Limaye Road, Laxmi Road. At last I decided to go ahead on the Laxmi road with Five Most Important Ganpati’s of Pune. Till that time one of my friend groups came there with me to see all that madness & enjoyment. From there I proceeded with them. The beats of Dhol Taase were making public crazy, one of that musical shocks was flowing through me as well & I was dancing, playing whistle & roaring all the way. Knowingly or unknowingly everyone was raising their hands in the air & vibrating it on the command of Dhol Taase leader like all were hypnotized by that Dhol Taase Music. In this entire craze how time went I don’t know & it was 7:00 PM in the evening, my friends said me they were leaving, I said fine I will stay here only till that time we were at Alka chowk, I was dancing, running & enjoying everything there. Suddenly I met with one of my group of friends & plugged with them. At 11:00 PM in the night they also left to their homes, after see off with them I stayed there till early morning 4:00 AM when Dagadusheth Miravnuk started, so many people there was waiting for that Miravnuk, some were took there mats with them to take rest on road itself. So after praying in front of Dagdusheth Ganpati I too left after living my small dream that day, with so many memories & some new dreams like next time I will also play the Dhol Tasse. That day I got little bit jealous on Pune Localized because to have this day in my life it took almost 22 years for me but those who born & brought up in Pune itself every year they enjoy this day.
In 2013 I was shifted to Kothrud Depot. Occasionally I used to visit the Sai Baba Temple at Karve Nagar Signal & during the month of June when I was there with my friend Shinu I saw the practice of Dhol Taase by Surya Pratishthan leading by Aniket Ambavle under the finance of Mr. Sandip Pendse. The board present there about new entry is ongoing clicked my dream to join Dhol Taase. Then instantly I went towards him & asked all my queries like practice schedule, trainers & etc. From the next day itself I started practicing under their guidance. How the practice & all performance went for the first year will explain in next write-ups.
Thanks & Regards,
This time with newly made friends at work, due to their interest & continues force to arrange some trek & plan all things in it, I said fine lets go for outing on 6th July 2016 as we have holiday. Almost ten odd people agreed on it & I planed the trek to LOHAGAD. After chit chating a lot on travel, food & time arrangements, we all finally decided to go by Pune Local Train at 8:05 AM. For that also we had lot of calls & messages to wake up all who are coming, for god’s sake train got late 8 mins & we all caught it & reached the trek starting point that is Malvali Station. Actually all this guys were new to trekking so I asked take local transport (60/- Rs each) to reach base village that is 8KM from station. Also if you want to go Bhaje Caves on the way 2KM from station they will take 20/- Rs each. Then all guys said no no we will go by walk, let’s do trek from here itself. So after having breakfast of Pune famous hot-hot Wada Pav & Tea, we started walking at 10:15 AM.
Lohagad (Iron Fort) is part of the Western Ghats, it is 3389 ft above sea level. Lohagad has a long history with several dynasties occupying it at different periods of time Satavahans, Chalukyas, Rashtrakutas, Yadavas, Bahamanis, Nizams, Mughals & Marathas. Shivaji Maharaj captured it in 1648 CE, but he was forced to surrender it to the Mughals in 1665 CE by the Treaty of Purandar. Shivaji Maharaj recaptured the fort in 1670 CE and used it for keeping his treasury. This fort was used to keep the loot from Surat. Later in Peshwa time Nana Phadnavis used this fort for living for some time and built several structures in the fort such as a big tank and a step-well. In the recent years the fort has been declared as a protected monument by the government.
One more thing during all the way we enjoyed rain a lot, at last we all were fade up with it & trying to save our self from rain 😛 😛 :P. After walking on the concrete road for few mins we reached the Bhaje Caves & big water fall there, we all had few clicks there & resumed our walking then we mate another water fall there also we had some group pics. After walking for few more mins small ghat started, so while going up by road we took shortcut through forest & went up, but be careful while taking short cuts because it will lead you to valley directly & also you may get lost there. During all this way after few distance there are small small huts are there & you can get snacks, tea & drinking water there. When we reached at the top of ghat we again had few snacks like egg & cucumber. Then few mins later we reached the base village Lohagad, there on hotel Sai Vihar we ordered the afternoon lunch(Zunka Bhakar) which we had after getting down from fort.
12:30 PM we started ascending the fort from base village from the start itself beautiful stairs were constructed to reach the first entrance gate of fort called as “Ganesh Darwaja“. After entering through that beautiful door one can see the bastion remnants, on the right side there is a shilla lekha in very bad condition may be in coming few years it may vanish. There on the right there is small entrance to enter into man mad room structure in bastion. From the start of stairs you can see the cannons (toof) of chatrapati shivaji maharaj’s era, we saw total six cannons on fort. Due to holiday it was too crowded but scenic as well, after one more gate there are two caves which were used as Food Store Room(Dhanyache Kothar) , now a days both caves are full of water. Few stair steps are loose because of heavy rain, few steps are slippery too & few steps are beautifully created in the hill rock itself. Finally after crossing three more gates we reached the “Hanuman Darwaja” one of the beautiful attraction on the fort & proof of great engineers & constructors. When you go up from the stairs then you can not see it directly you need to take turn to right side almost 70 to 90 degree on top of that huge nails are placed on gate door all the gates are constructed in the same way on the fort but designs & carvings on every door are different.
At the top of fort huge fog was there literally we were in full of clouds, in such a way that beyond 10 meters nothing is visible even if somebody calls you from 20 meter that voice will not come to you that dense fog was there. At the start there is RajaRani Temple was the in that temple two tombs are there. We clicked some pics there & suddenly all fog gone & we saw beautiful top view of full stair case. There heading in right direction one can see the remnants of Rajwada, Sadar & base of homes, little bit ahead there are three very big big caves are there one is almost vanished other two are good in condition all were used as Horse Stable (“Ghodyachi Paga”). Going forward in that direction there is Dargha was there adjacent to it small lake was there & from this side of fort one can see the “Visapur Fort” clearly.
Little bit ahead in left direction from there, we reached the “Vinchu Kada” one of the beautiful attraction on fort in fact in Sahyadri Ranges. Its full of railings & secure now a days but be careful while going there. While getting back to main gate from other side of fort there is very beautiful step well was there, little ahead to it there is Mahadev temple was there & Tryambak Talav was there, few of us did swimming there, but be careful while doing it. After exploring all these things we started descending the fort & reached back to the hotel for lunch at 3:30 PM. There after having lunch by taking local transport we reached the Malavali station at 5:00 PM & took the 5:33 PM local tickets & reached back to Pune at 7:00 PM.
- Photo Credit to Mohit Umalkar, Purvesh Mandhalkar, Apurva Sherke, Khader Hussain, Rahul Chandure.
- Before going on trek do some research about the routes & what to explore there.
- Go in full sleeve cloths, good shoes,enough water & also if going in rainy season have extra pair of cloths.