Places visited: Chilkur Balaji Temple etc…(won’t want to give up in the beginning itself)
We started our third day little relaxed because we had lot of nice places to go. After a lot of reconsideration from our existing plan, we decided to go to Chilkur Balaji temple otherwise known as Visa Temple (well people believe that if you pray to this God, your Visa’s will be done without any problem.. I don’t see how it works..but a belief is a belief). So we had our breakfast’s in my guest house and started at around 9.45 am towards Chilkur. Being a saturday we did expect a crowd in the temple and we did not even know how big or small the temple is so when we got there around 10.15 or 10.30 am (after feeding my nephew in the car with the same old idly.. urgh! I was getting so tired of seeing him being fed idly or curd rice.. I was ready to curse my sister and I already plan on turning him against those two hideous food later in his life irrespective of how very good those two items are during travelling.) But we were in for a surprise. The temple is in a very small village sort of place..quite nothing around it except for Mrugavani National Deer Park and Osman Sagar Lake on the other side (you can see that from the car parking area) and the temple is very very small..but guess what..the set of street shops near the temple…that is almost 2 times the size of the temple..
As soon as we made our nephew remove his shoes he got all cranky and started screaming for his shoes and did not let us inside the temple. No cellphones, no camera and nothing allowed inside. And this boy was at his high 🙂 No one could stop him. So a quick meeting was convened and it was decided that my sister will sit out with my nephew (he really hates crowds…really..he will create all sorts of scenes just not to be in one) in the car and myself and my BIL will go ahead. We went all the way back (buying him some cars !!!! on the way) and settled him in the car and went back to the temple. Little did we know the entrance we made was on a side. It was a very very kutty temple and it was fully crowded that people literally lifted us up and made us do our rounds. We did not know where the praharam was. These people were chanting Govinda’s name and going round and round… And when enquired it seems that they do it for 108 times (OH MY GOD!!!). We did not want to get included in that so made our way to see the God and do one round and come out. When we came out we entered the other praharam of Shiva (no other Gods are here) prayed and let ourselves out of the other way. Now we were lost, coz it was fully crowded with the shops and we did not know where that road ended. It took us almost twice the amount of time to get back to the original place than the time that we spent in entering the temple. It had become terribly hot and we so ready for some rest just after this small visit.
Since my BIL had already booked a hotel for Sat and Sun, so next was our 1.5 hrs journey into the city to the hotel in Secunderabad. By the time we came in around 12.30 am, we were so tired and hungry that we checked in early with additional 150Rs and ordered our lunch @ room and devoured it 🙂 and then let ourselves rest for some time for our evening tours. My nephew who had a good nap in the car while travelling was all revved up and playful that any attempt by us to make him sleep was futile and we ended up getting ready by 3.30 pm
Our first stop was NTR gardens, so we got ready, took an auto and went to NTR gardens to see that it was CLOSED…Seems like after the bomb blast and the recent cricket match that was happening in Hyderabad, there was not enough security to handle the crowded areas so they closed the garden. It was such a big disappointment. My nephew was sure to have enjoyed this. We were so pathetically sulking that we did not know what else to do. So we decided to turn the auto to Lumbini Park to see if we have any luck there. Nope. All public gardens were closed till 4th or 5th. What damn luck. So no boating in the Hussain Sagar. No walk around the necklace road atleast for now. So we went to a place we thought we will skip. Birla Mandir.
Since in Birla Mandir we have to keep our electronics in open lockers, I bailed out because I had my ipad, my DSLR, and all our phones.. no way I am keeping them in open lockers. So I asked them to go ahead while I sit it out with all the luggage. I wasn’t the only one there. There were quite a lot of people who took the same path because they were not happy with the way things were stored..I had seen this place umpteen number of times earlier. This was the place where my first digital camera was broken. I still remember that incident crystal clear. And somehow this place was more about beauty than piety. So it was no big deal for me. They did enjoy their visit and when they were back, we went to the Birla Planetarium, because it was still 5 pm. The only place we were ready to see with our nephew was the observatory but that opened up at 6 pm. So we relaxed in the place near the observatory building there where my nephew was happily playing.
Thankfully we had some snacks packed so he was happy munching. But again around 6.30 pm when we were called for our visit, he started getting hungry and sleepy. Thankfully he made it to the Observatory with us and we could see the Jupiter and the 5 moons surrounding it very clearly. It was so good to see it. That was the only star that was visible at that time. If we did wait for it to get more darker we could have an opportunity to see more..but that again depends on our luck. Clear sky and all…And we knew that luck was clearly not on our favor today so we decided to skip it and go for some dinner place in necklace road..But again we couldn’t find one and the auto fellow was a very grumpy one so we decided to head back to the hotel and after feeding the kid, decide on what can be done next.
When the kid was fed and we had our dinner’s it was almost 8 pm and there was no point going anywhere after that again. All we can manage was necklace road, but we did see the lights on in the Buddha Statue on our way back. We couldn’t stop and take snaps (which my BIL was really regretting and was pouting about it ..just like the way I had behaved when I couldn’t take that Hollywood sign in LA…:D)
It was a really crappy day and nothing went as per planned. But we had a nice hotel and when we all had settled down for our sleep we had this session with my nephew. He started telling a story (imitating his mom because she tries to tell him stories before his sleep) and all that came out repeated was chanting of both of my niece’s names and how & who made them sleep daily. It was quite funny hearing him say in broken words in his own cute way. Then I started telling him a Aesop fable and guess what, he repeated line by line of what I said, almost for 15 mins. Boy was he cute 😀
After such a day, that one hour made it all right. It ended well. He, my nephew, in his own cute way, made this right and I am glad that I decided to stay with them that day.