Apr 17, 2019

gathering at Discovery Village, Kanakapura Road - part 1

It was quite some since I met Holy Saint School boys last, which was Aug-2016 at Krishna Rao Park. The idea of an overnight gathering was formed sometime mid-Jan with tentative date in Feb. After one or two iterations date and venue were frozen.. Mar-16th and 17th at a resort near Ramanagara. While the idea remained frozen, the list grew from 5 to 11. With less than two weeks to go the idea thawed suddenly.. an alternate venue was thrown in, discussions followed which resulted in changing the venue to a resort off Bengaluru-Kanakapura highway. The chief organizer Subbu struck the gavel and finalized the plan- check into Discovery Village on Mar-16th morning, spend the night there and check out Mar-17th.

The list had grown to eleven. Mar-15th final reminder was sent out, below is the original message from Subbu: For tomorrow
1) you are welcome to bring any snacks of your choice
2) plan on getting swimming shorts as there is a nice pool and you can get pedicure by small fishes 
3) kayaking is given to us as complimentary

The last point ticked off some excitement! Bring Your Own B****?

March 16, 2017
Shyam messaged the group that he was down with cold, dropping out. Hmm. Daniel picked me up on Richmond Road. By then the boys had already having breakfast at Krishna Grand, BSK II stage. We were behind schedule.. Subbu called Daniel to check.. Daniel answered that he wont be making it because relatives had landed at his place.. with the phone on speaker.. Subbu was disappointed and became emotional.. what Daniel, you can't do this, you are the key to this plan.. Daniel carried on with his bluff.. what can I do when relatives turn up, have to attend to them.. so damn convincing he was! To end Subbu's plight I stepped into the conversation, told we would be joining in minutes. We had a good laugh at the breakfast table when Subbu said he knew Daniel was bluffing :) Besides the confirmed group of ten, we met Dinesh S and Mahesh, neither were joining us. The former was with his relatives and latter had come to say hi to us. Done with breakfast, we were ready for the 26 kms journey.

It was around 11-30 when we stepped into Discovery Village, the reception area was cool, greenery everywhere, plenty of antiques to marvel at, and DV team was friendly. The place's ambiance is is really relaxing and photo friendly, so many subjects to shoot. Some of the antiques are not display items like the cycle-rickshaw and the 3-wheel wooden barrow. I'm the pillion while Daniel's the rider. DM and Prashanth check out the barrow. 

Satya takes over the rickshaw while Prashanth and Nitya are his fares. You must have noticed the boat in the background and the surrounding greenery.

The rickshaw is working condition, you can actually pedal it. DM checks it out as Sridhar aims his Nikon.

Subbu had handled the check in. Oh let me introduce properly.. left to right.. Sridhar, Satyaprakash, Subramanya, Nityannda, Dinesh Magar (DM),  Daniel, Prashanth.. hmm.. two boys are missing.. Bhaskar and Venugopal.

Having checked in, it was time for welcome drink. The amount of greenery amazed me, I admired the management's attitude towards Nature. I thought of Krishnae Ficus.. I must mention it to the staff here.. Looks like Subbu read my thoughts, he pointed me to the Krishnae Ficus. Wow, what a pleasant surprise! A well grown ficus it was. I fell in love with DV. You can see the thick dark green cup-shaped leaves in the foreground. The divine connection is that Lord Krishna ate butter from these leaves.

This is the second surprise with Subbu and Krishna Ficus. The first surprise was on Dec-27-2014 at Lalbagh.. Krishnae Ficus at Lalbagh.

The young man in yellow tee is our host-in-charge, his name is Manjunath Ambigyar. I was happy to learn that his home town is Anegundi, an important historic site in Karnataka. DM amuses the group with some story.

Manju offers us to take a quick tour of the resort. We found one of the missing boys- Venu -his stripes are outstanding.

The resort has almost everything a vacationer expects.. swimming pool, volley ball court, cricket ground, football court, obstacle course, rock-climbing, cycling, etc. etc. Besides the usual stuff, DV has a fish manicure pond attached to the swimming pool, outdoor badminton court, mini golf course, archery, amphitheater, clay modeling & crafts studio and kayaks too. I might missed out few, you can discover them during your visit.

So that's the cool blue pool and manicure pond. We were to the end of our tour..

Manju suggested us to take a group picture at this photo spot. Nine Holy Saints here, Bhaskar is still missing. It seems he was taking calls from his office. We were thirsty now, decided to head to our rooms for some refreshments.

Here's a collage of few interesting things seen around the village.. clay cart and elephant, sheet metal oxen and wooden pot, wooden truck and a stone sculpture.

This is our living quarters, the entire building of four rooms was occupied by us. Here's the missing boy Bhaskar, in yellow-blue tee. Mercifully his office people have left him alone now. Plan was to settle down for a mini session but the plan changed since lunch was being served and closes at 2-30.

Lunch was decent. We settled down for a session, which lasted until 4-15 or so. Time to get moving again, we had plenty of options.. cricket, swimming pool, cycling, or trek.

We headed towards the amphitheater. Tea & snacks were being served. A hot cup of tea was super refreshing.. matter of habit. Bhaskar in action now.

Quick look at the amphitheater. Looks cool and comfortable.

Daniel and Subbu take a short break to catch up with messages on their phones.

Archery was something I wanted to try for a long time. As a kid, I used to make bows with sticks and twine, shot parkekaddi. I realized everyone in the group wanted to be an archer here. Manju explained us how to position the arrow, pull the string, aim & release the arrow. Someone in the group mentioned William Tell, his story was one of the English lessons.

That's Daniel marking his target. Most of got the hang of it in few tries. It's a good sport for developing concentration. The other sport that fascinated is rowing, somehow I never chased it. Anyway, we had plans for kayaking tomorrow. We had a good time with archery, great experience!

Next we headed towards the pool. Some wanted to play in water but some were hesitant to enter the pool.. I was one. I'd rather go for a trek and Sridhar wanted to shoot birds. He's a pro at shooting metal birds too. I've seen his pictures of aircraft in flight at the recent Aero Show.

Venu, Satya and Nitya get their feet nibbled by fish :)

Here are a few candid shots.. Sridhar checking a shot in his Nikon, Subbu our Mestru, Bhaskar is captivated by some creature and Nitya's expression at a surprise shot.

While some got ready for the pool, I inquired for a sunset point. Manju suggested one about 1.5 kms away. We could either trek or cycle to the hill. Sridhar, Nitya and I settled for cycling, bird-watching and trekking expedition. Manju would be our guide. We selected four brand new Hero ET-2 mountain bikes. In fact, we were the very first riders!

will continue in gathering at Discovery Village, Kanakapura Road - part 2.


Sathya said...

Fantastic description of the events,made for some interesting read of the wonderful time had togethe.Thanks Siddu

siddeshwar said...

Thank you, Sathya :)