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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

A Visit to Eden | Kerala

                Mushroomed through out the landscape; the coconut and banana shades blends in with the eye soothing patches of greenery. Undoubtedly, self proclaimed as "God's Own Country", the state stole my awe, even though it was my second visit. As it is said, vision is the most beautiful wonder that the creator installed beneath the forehead of every animal, the slim state of India remains as one of my favorite destinations, of the several places I had paid a visit in these three decades of my survival.

                     This was my second visit to this well known, internationally acclaimed region of the Indian sub-continent. Kerala.Since 2007, when I visited the place for the first time; a lot of winds have blown across the green landscape. This time though, I had a career commitment to make. The 16th All India Congress of Cytology and Genetics (aka AICCG) asked for some scientific acumen to be spent, in exchange of some sporadic trips to the in and around of our conference center at Trivandrum or Thiruvananthapuram. My colleagues did put up some brave show, but the beaches of this great place stole everything.

                     Although not in Kerala, but the Marina Beach at Chennai, Tamil Nadu opened the windows of the travel heart gang to what will be on offer for the next few days. The Dr. Ashok Kumar Giri research group found solace in wet sands and wave sprinkles of of Bay of Bengal. And the giggles were carried across the beach (one of the longest few in India), implied of a long time freedom from the snubs of research life. But again, as it is said; its better to realize a profession as your lifestyle rather than burden it as worthy work pressure and nothing else!

                      To top it all up, I did not take my camera. Did not feel like, but I missed that love of mine on a serious note! But then, there are others who always love to click the moments. All credits for images in this article goes to JKD (Mr. Jayanta Kumar Das).

                    Into Kerala, the beaches never ended. Thiruvananthapuram offers a sunset marvel in Kovalam. Clean waters of the sea, the Arabian Sea. I smile as I write the name, as in facebook, I attracted several comments and mis-conception of many people when I wrote "From Bengal to Arab..." People literally took it as if I was going to some Arab nation for some work. My niche of science is stable on Arsenic toxicity in humans and one friend of mine commented: "Arsenic in Arabia?" Well, the Shiekhs would surely pay me a Goldsome grant for any work as such! Getting back to Kovalam, the view prior sunset was a beauty; with the fond memoirs of sunset in 2007.

                       The same day, we ran for the sunset view from Backwaters. The famed water body of South India, we ran literally to catch hold of the Titanic. But, we were late by miles. Alleppey, is the famed destination for Backwater trip. Its a great view and a ride from Kollam to Alleppey takes 3 hours. If you are based in Trivandrum, then it will fetch a healthy 4 hours to reach Kollam, on road and then start off for the backwater sojourn, for the beauty of experience. Imagine, nearly 570km of waterways, broken and reconstructed in places, formed by rain waters and no rivers or sea to meet anywhere, although the thinnest distance from the sea, for the backwaters is just 20 meters. According to the local Malay guides, this is a wonder; but geography tells you a different version of wonder. Its a water fill of the crack formed when the Indian plate crashed into Asia. But there are several beliefs, which I dare not to break! Even Parashuram is believed to create the creaks, with a single jolt from his famed Shiva-axe! Mythologically fearful! Be it being axed or cracked or naturally riddled, the sun set from the place called Kappil, a place that is 10Kms from Varkala Rail station (by auto), is a treat to the eyes.... Varkala is 30 minutes by train from Trivandrum Central. But be at the Central Station prior 1:30PM, or else you miss the trains that would go to the place. It's a long wait after 2:30PM.

                    It's a long journey.... so there are some more blog articles coming on this! Till then, be happy and enjoy reading!

Somnath Paul Photography


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