Oh you are back so early… must have booked a taxi from Bangalore itself?”
No no, we went by bus
Achchha... so you hired a taxi after reaching there only
No no, didn’t hire any taxi… we travelled by bus, there as well!
Then you must have skipped some important places
Arre nahi, we visited all the three major destinations plus one extra!

This is a part of telephonic conversation which Deepak was having with his mother today, after we came back from our fantastic one day Mysore trip last night. Thanks to Karnataka Government!

It was a little cold, rather a “cool” morning in Bangalore this Saturday when at 6 am we headed towards Majestic Bus Terminal to catch a bus to Mysore. There was no worry or doubt regarding bus availability as we had full faith in KSRTC services. After Rajkishor also reached there, we started for Mysore. It was a day of “What a timing!”.

After around 2 hours bus driver gave us a chance to break our fast with idly-vada (both having deep b
ath in Sambhar). The moment we finished our breakfast and went back in bus, driver appeared back and started the bus. Every North Indian knows how to eat idly-vada but I’ve learnt to eat it at appropriate speed (matching with a south Indian) as well, I realized (hehe… Chhabra joke :)

At 10:30am we reached Mysore bus stand. It seemed nothing less than an office of a multi-national IT company which forced me to click the first pic in Mysore. Not only in Mysore but in all major cities in Karnataka you will find it like that.

Our first destination Mysore Palace is at walkable distance from there. In between we had naariyal paani (It was a bit sweet and tasted better than that I’ve had in Bangalore and Hyderabad). An auto wala on the way, tried to attract us shouting “Aaj Tipu Sultan ki anniversary hai, so palace der se khulega” (did you understand the motive behind saying that? If not, call me on my cell phone, will tell you the same story which I told to Rajkishor then :).

After 5 mins walk, we were in front of royal Mysore Palace. We got to know that the original palace was destroyed in fire in late 19th century and the one in front of us was re-built in 1912. It is the second most visiting tourist place in India after Taj Mahal. It actually deserves to be!

After spending more than 2 hours in the palace we came out and queried about our next destination Chamund
i Hills temple. It was more than 12 kms from there and in no time we got a Volvo AC city bus from there itself directly to the temple. Bus conductor suggested us to get a full day pass for 50/- instead of a normal ticket of 30/- upto temple. We got those passes and will you believe these 50 rupees was the only money we spent for city transport in our complete trip! As per information on the web and from the local people, there is a ticket of 20/- for normal queue (waiting time 1 hour) and 100/- for VIP queue (waiting time 10 mins) for darshanam at Chamundi Hills temple. We reached there at 2pm only to get disappointed as the temple remains closed between 2pm to 3:30pm and there were no signs of any queue meaning it was already closed. We will have to wait for one and a half hour! Having no clue of where to go and whom to ask we started roaming around and unknowingly reached the entrance gate of the temple. It was when we heard somebody shouting “jaldi jaao mandir band hota”. We took no time to get our shoes off and along with few other people around there rushed towards the gate. But Rajkishor was the only lucky to make it as police man at the gate locked the door and didn’t allow me and Deepak to enter. On a repeated request he indicated remaining people to come from the back door. Race again started. This time Deepak got the benefit of being tall and stood first. Since the crowd at the back door was blocking the people coming out, hence the policeman declared no-more-entry there as well. With the blessings of Maa Chamundeshwari, I had just entered and became the last to get the entry. After coming out we realized that the info on the web was missing third type of queue for darshanam with 0/- ticket and no waiting time (but only at 2pm, what a timing! )

Now we started discussing about where to go next as we had more than 2 hours before we go to see night beauty at Brindavan Gardens. In the options were few museums a
nd the zoo. As usual, I was willing to visit zoo but Rajkishor and Deepak were making azeeb saa muh on that option. I started my lecture-
Tum logo ne giraffe dekha hai?

lo to kis kaam ki hai tumhari jindagi… bataao kya muh dikhaaoge apne bachchon ko… giraffe dekhe bina hi duniya se chale jaaoge… bhagyashaali ho tum jo giraffe dekhne ka mauka bhi mil raha hai tumhe aur tum zoo
nahi jana chahte…

May be my words were not that effective as we failed to reach any conclusion and boarded a bus back to city bus stand. An AC bus was the best place to continue rest of the discussion, by this way we were utilizing our passes as well. After seeing Maharaja’s not-so –valuable belongings like kurta, shoes etc at the palace Deepak had curiosity if those guys knew in advance that someday somebody will make our museum and we should keep these things safe. I was inspired by his thought and captured my first ever bus pass in camera (no need to tell you smart people what I expect you to do with that :).
We were laughing out loud talking on random topics and making fun of each other in the bus when it stopped in between. My wish to visit zoo which had got multiplied by zero suddenly got divided by zero as Rajkishor read “Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens” opposite side of the road. It was when my le
cture worked. We all jumped out of the bus instantly.

We happily entered into zoo and to our disbelief, the very first thing we saw inside were 16 tall legs… wowwww… four giraffe were there to welcome us in the first enclosure itself. We kept staring at them for a minute and then started photography session. Even giraffe was very excited to see us and bent down to kiss Deepak’s head giving me a unique pose to capture. He gave me the same pose with Rajkishor as well. I would like to specially mention that the animals and birds in the zoo seemed to be very well treated and were in a very good health as compared to what I’ve seen in Gwalior, Delhi and Hyderabad Zoo. Mysore Zoo is one of the oldest zoos in India and is among the first to start animal adoption scheme. We also saw a tiger adopted by Mr. B. S. Yediyurappa Hon’ble Chief Minister, Karnataka. Nothing to mention, it was the healthiest among all.

Because of very good weather conditions all animals were in best of their mood. We saw roaring lion, a cute calf of elephant, different species of ducks having fresh fishes in their evening snacks, couple of leopard fighting for some personal issue, a chimpanzee annoyed for not having a long bamboo around to hit the people laughing at him, zebra quite satisfied with the services of zoo management, couple of stork bird (bagula) standing on single leg (depicting the famous Hindi phrase ‘bagula bhagat’), a species of kangaroo somehow managing to stand on two legs and many more. In all at each enclosure we felt, “what a timing!” It was around 5:15pm when we came out of the zoo and boarded a bus to city bus stand and another bus from there to Brindavan Gardens.

After one hour we were in front of the solid high wall of Krishnarajasagar dam built at Kavery river. The garden is adjoining to this dam. There was a huge crowd and long queues for ticket and entry outside the entrance. Garden is spread over a large area and is famous for its wonderful musical fountain. I think instead of any words, pics will be better resources to appreciate its beauty. But still, after roaming there for half an hour we couldn’t find the most exciting fountain. We were almost feeling that we have been fooled until Deepak shouted, “wo raha, what a timing!” The show of musical fountain was just started. They played few kannada songs as well as hindi songs including chak-de-india and saare jahaan se achchha at the end. Fantastic! Now we started back to the city bus station again using the same bus pass ;) and reached back to Bangalore keeping wonderful memories of a wonderful trip with us.

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