Kumbakonam – temple town (part one)

In my most recent trip to Kumbakonam, on a fine sunday morning, I took in my brother-in-law’s scooty ES. My objective was to go to the Ramaswamy temple nearby. Why Ramaswamy kovil – that was the easiest my wife could give directions to – take that small road that you see from here, go straight until it hits the temple walls. Park and go in. How easy could it get? So thats what I did.

Ramaswamy temple - Kumbakonam

The temple is beautiful. It has Sita-Lakshmana-Bharatha-Shatrugna-Hanuman-Rama in Pattabhisheka kolam (Coronation ceremony). The idols are huge – eac of them 7-8 feet tall. And the temple is pretty old.

Ramaswamy Temple

The Ramaswamy Temple which depicts the paintings of Ramayana is another important Vaishanavite temple in Kumbakonam. The greatness of Ramaswamy Temple is said to be the only temple where Lord Rama,Goddess Sita are in the same platform and Lord Hanuman is playing the veena instead of reading the Ramayana. The entire deity is said to be made from Saligrama monolith. The Temple is filled with intricate carvings in its pillars.

Excert from wikipedia (src)

After seeing this temple, me being me, I decided, I will take a different route back home. And Kumbakonam, being Kumbakonam, if you get lost, you find more temples. While I was gazing blankly around for landmarks, while driving, I found Someshwarar kovil. This was my next stop. The main deity is named Vyazha Someshwarar. It has however come to be known, among locals, as Ezha Someshwarar (poor Someshwarar). Popular folklore is that, this used to be a rich temple, until some other temples (like Ramaswamy temple) came up near by. And then, people stopped frequenting this temple as much, and it became poor. Looking at the size of the temple, it has nothing to do with our defenition of poor though.

Someshwarar temple

While going around the temple prahara, I happened to see another gigantic temple, next door. So I asked an old man sitting inside the temple, and he said, that is the Sarangapani temple, and that was my next stop.

Sarangapani temple

This is another huge temple. The main deity Saranganathar is seen in reclining pose (like Srirangam). Then satisfied with the number of temples for the day, I headed back home.

Some other awesome links about the above temples:





More Tanjore Pictures

Shot during my trip to Kumbakonam over the weekend. This was a bus trip. Caught these mostly on the way there – early morning Tanjore district pictures as usual.

One of the hundreds of temples that line the sides of the winding roads of Tanjore district.
One of the hundreds of temples that line the sides of the winding roads of Tanjore district.
One of the many tributaries of the Cauvery river, brimming with water - a beautiful sight to see.
One of the many tributaries of the Cauvery river, brimming with water - a beautiful sight to see.
Can there be a green, greener than this ? Almost flouroscent green. No post processing done.
Can there be a green, greener than this ? Almost flouroscent green. No post processing done.

All pictures shot using my Nokia 7210 Super Nova mobile phone.

No post processing done, except for addition of borders.

Veg Burger review

I have been in the search for a good Veg Burger in Bangalore for a while. And no, I do not mean the factory made McDonalds burger. Yuck. Have gotten bored of eating the “exact formula based burger”. Last week, happened to have a pretty good burger at the food court in the Forum, Koramangala. In the Shiv Sagar booth, there was a burger on display. And it said 50 bucks. So I said, what the heck.


It was pretty good actually. Deep fried patty in between the buns. But not dripping with oil. Long oval buns. Not the usual small burger buns. Sesame topping was there. The burger was cut in two, so it made eating easy. Fresh slices of tomato, cucumber, onion, green peppers, and guess what, beetroot, on top of the patty. Some sauce in between – most probably mayo.

The burger was indeed juicy (just the right amount). Not oily, and made a perfect eat.

If any other Bangaloreans have any perfect veg burger joints, let me know in the comments !

“Proof” at Ranga Shankara

Last week, I happened to visit Ranga Shankara, a theatre for plays in Bangalore. I went to attend a play named “Proof”. One of my team guys brought up the idea. We had just gotten a milestone done at work, and we thought, it would be a good break. Went with the whole team.


Firstly, the theater ambience itself is amazing. In the bustling midst of JP Nagar Phase II, there is this quiet little theatre. The foyer and lobby are well decorated in terms of ambience. A spiral staircase leads you to the theater entrance upstairs. There is a small eatery in the ground floor (try their sabhudana vada. It is amazing!). The theater itself is a circular room with amphitheater style seating. Long rows of simple bench like seating. No fancy push back seating. Comfortable, and open. The stage is a wooden stage. No audio equipment separates the stage from the seats. So its just the actors and you – face to face. Acoustics is superb. No mics. It requires professional actors, who can ‘throw’ the voice out to the audience.


Brilliant in one word. No wonder it won the pullitzer. After watching so many masala movies, where you can predict the next scene. this was very refreshing. It is a 2 act play (15 min break in between). Very good suspense. The story line is simple, but takes a couple of twists and turns, at the right moments, which keeps you wanting to see more. 4 actors, and one stage setting (no sets to change in between). The actors did a splendid job. It was definitely a refreshing break from the monotony of work, and in general from the humdrum of life.

If you want to read the synopsys ofthe play, read it from wikipedia here.

Shock and Awe

Oh yes, that is how I descibe it. After contemplating a lot on what and how to write this news, I just got down to writing it. Shock and awe indeed. And awe in the bad sense. How could the Nobel committee be so stupid! They are supposed to be the smartest people on earth. Cmon, they judge the world and give the award to the smartest people. People of the likes of Nelson Mandela (who fought for racial injustice) and Mother Theresa (who did so much to the City of Joy) deserve the Nobel Peace Prize. I am not saying Obama will not. He has the right intentions. He has the right plans. But what the heck, he has not even started implementing them! And will he actually implement them? God knows.

Hypothetical scenario — Lets say 3 years down the line, towards the end of his first term,

(1) he gets the entire army out of Iraq – meaning there are no more insurgencies, and a peaceful democratic government is ruling there;

(2) he gets the entire army out of Afghanistan, where a similar situation prevails;

(3) Peace prevails in Israel;

(4) He solves the 100 yr old border problem between India and Pakistan ;

(5) Tibet becomes an autonomous governing body either within China or within India, or a separate nation state like Bhutan.

Even if he does 3 out of the above 5, I will say that, he can deserve the Nobel Peace Prize. For some reason, within myself, I will never see the Nobel Peace Prize the same way again. It is diluted.

If he had even the slightest bit of honor in him, he would have declined it, and said, I will take it when I deserve it. His statement of “I do not deserve it, but I will take it”, brought more anger to me. This is not a Cadbury Bournville Chocolate bar for heavens sake, it is a Nobel Peace Prize. Ok. now that I have gotten it out of my system, I will stop.