Oh those highways!!!

We lived in Liberia between 2006 and 2009. There were virtually no roads and travelling from one town to another especially during the monsoons was a nightmare. The odds of reaching the destination without incident were very low. A number of such drives included sessions of make your own road…

During one such trip from Yekepa to Monrovia, the Landcruiser we were travelling in got stuck in the slush and it took 2 hours and 5 men to physically lift it and free the wheels.

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Against the Odds

#Liberia #roads #Africa #monsoons #longdrives

The Bubble Head

A picture clicked with my phone camera. It was a random shot of the setting sun when the gentleman on his evening walk unknowingly stepped into the frame. It was probably the shutter speed or something else that resulted in such a strange shot.

It reminded me of the Bubble head charm that Cedric Diggory performed on himself in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.:)

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Against the Odds

World within a soap bubble

Little did I know when I chased after soap bubbles in a park that each bubble carried a fairy tale within it. 

I remember blowing soap bubbles and chasing after them in my childhood and more so with my daughter when she was a kid. The laughter and joy that she radiated cannot be expressed in words. Priceless memories…

The image that I had playfully captured left me mesmerized and spellbound.

#photography #bubbles #colours #soap #fun #childhood

When the going gets tough….

February 4 is World Cancer Day. Do I want to celebrate on this day? Yes, I do. I celebrate because I fought, survived and am now giving a shout out to all you guys reading this. Today I also celebrate the anniversary of my first blog post.

I was diagnosed in February 2009 with cancer of the breast at the age of 45. I had no symptoms to indicate that I had cancer, just a chance discovery of a lump. What worked in my favour was the early detection and prompt action. I was under the surgeon’s knife within a week of detection for a lumpectomy and followed it up with chemotherapy and radiation.

I always visualised the light at the end of the tunnel when the going got tough during the nine months of my treatment.

People may say life is unfair, but I beg to disagree. Life gives you all indications. If you don’t pay heed, what right do you have to call life unfair?

I have a few friends, educated ones at that who have never gone for a medical checkup for fear of the unknown. If the unknown becomes known, you become empowered to take corrective and remedial actions. You know what you are up against, and if your results are all normal, go out and celebrate.

I never miss my dates with my doctors. After the cancer episode, I am doubly alert to any significant changes in my body. I started working out last year to keep myself physically fit. I eat well and stay aware.

I was unfortunate to have been diagnosed with cancer, but I would also say I was fortunate to have found it early. I was fortunate to have been blessed with a wonderful family and circle of friends who supported me and smiled with me through those 9 months. I was fortunate to have been able to afford the best of treatments. I consider myself blessed.

I dedicate this post to an aunt of mine who underwent a mastectomy yesterday. She delayed going to the doctor for almost 8 months out of fear. She is responding well to the course of treatment and we keep motivating her regularly to keep her in positive and good spirits.

I also would like to salute a friend of mine who underwent a lumpectomy and completed a course of chemotherapy last week. She is due to start her radiation therapy next week.She is a warrior too.

If you are fighting this battle or anybody known to you is fighting, remember to remain cheerful and positive. Do not sympathise, instead empathise and support. Show them some love.

My request to all you guys and gals out there, keep checking for small changes in your body. React quickly, that is the key. Stay positive.

On a lighter note, I recollect a joke a friend shared on WhatsApp. ‘If you don’t have a Valentine on Valentine’s day, it is alright. Not all have aids on World Aids Day.’ So is celebrating World Cancer Day.

Join me in creating an awareness about this disease. Take care of you and yours.

 

#cancer #medicine #life #treatment #family #friends #WorldCancerDay

Test

Overwhelming

Speak Out

Darkness

Age-Old Questions

No Fair

Bylekuppe- The serene seat of Buddhism

We left around 4 AM  by car from Bengaluru and reached Bylekuppe at around 9 AM. Located to the west of Mysore at a distance of 90 km, is the Buddhist Golden temple at Bylakuppe, the largest seat of Tibetan Buddhism in South India.

Bylakuppe, along with Dharamsala in Himachal Pradesh, is home to thousands of exiled Tibetans since many decades.

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The monastery 
In Bylakuppe is situated the Golden Temple, aka Namdroling Monastery, established in 1963 by His Holiness Pema Norbu Rinpoche shortly after his exit from Tibet in 1959. It is the second seat of the Palyul Monastery which is one of the six great Tibet Nyingma Mother monasteries.

The forest land for the temple was donated by the Indian Government to the Tibetan exiles. Initially it was an 80 sq. feet bamboo construction and was called by its full name The Thegchog Namdrol Shedrub Dargyeling monastery.

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The statues of Lord Buddha, Padmasambhava and Amitayus
The temple has now grown into a sprawling complex. It is now the second largest Tibetan settlement outside Tibet. It houses training facilities for many monks and student-monks and is said to be the largest teaching centre  of ‘Nyingmapa’ which is a prime lineage of Tibetan Buddhism.

It also houses three captivating golden statues, namely of Buddha, Padmasambhava, and Amitayus. Each statue is about 40 feet high.

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The beautiful paintings on the walls and ceiling
The walls have been decorated with intricate paintings illustrating stories of Gods and demons from Tibetan Buddhist mythology. The aroma of flowers, incense sticks and candles permeate the entire temple. The captivating and serene landscapes around it make the Golden temple mesmerizing.

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Prayer time

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Turning the pages of the book containing the transcript of the prayers

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Beating the drum
The temple resonates with the soft chanting of the hymns by the Buddhist monks and the timed beating of the drum.

IMG_3280_edited.jpg Entry into the main hall is restricted during the prayer hours when the monks and the students assemble to chant the hymns in a beautiful chorus. Photography inside the temple is permitted. The complex is a photographer’s delight with lovely paintings and beautiful architecture. Shopping centres near the temple, offer an extensive range of Tibetan items such as statues, carpets, traditional costumes and exquisite jewelleries.

The Bylakuppe Golden temple Monastery is open to public are from 7 AM to 8 PM and is located at a distance of 6 km from Kushalnagar, in Kodagu/ Coorg which is the nearest town.

To reach Bylakuppe, you can either hire a taxi from Mysore, which is only 90 km away or opt for buses. It is about 250 km from Bangalore.

Along with Golden Temple/Monastery, there are many other sightseeing places in and around Bylakuppe, making it an ideal place to visit from Mysore and even a perfect weekend getaway from Bangalore.

Transcript

<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/mystical/”>Mystical</a&gt;

A Moment in Time

The Happy Wanderer

#monastery #Buddhism #prayers #bylekuppe #Coorg #religion

Trees that teach

This tree that sheds all its leaves in autumn, remains barren in snowy winters will turn green once again. That is resilience…IMG_0165.JPG

The lone tree trying to reach up to the skies is trying to teach us a few lessons.

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Resilient

 

#trees #snow #mountains #winters #photography #traveldiaries