When Aari asked me where I wanted to be for my birthday, a forest seemed to be a good choice to me. Fortunately for us, there just was such a place, 130 kilometers from our home- called "Old Magazine House" at Ganeshgudi in Karnataka.
We started our drive at 0700 and most of the drive is on NH 4A. For some reason, the Goa section of the road is very well maintained, pothole free, well marked and with proper signage boards. But the very second you cross into Karnataka, the road becomes as bumpy as it can get. The entire stretch of some 30 kilometers was filled with massive potholes, many of them big enough to sink in an entire wheel of a car.
We had our breakfast at a place called "Wild Mushroom" restaurant. The place is a part of a resort, but they also allow non- guests to share their buffet breakfast. ( And Yes- No wild mushrooms served here ;)
We reached "Old Magazine house" well before check-in time, and we were quite delighted to be welcomed by varied melodious calls of many birds.
We had a lovely 4 days stay, at the below cottage- in the midst of shady trees, cut off from the world for a change-no pesky calls and refreshingly clean air.
It felt really nice to wake up one morning, and to hear Aari sing happy birthday, accompanied by the melodious whistle of the Malabar whistling Thrush. The call of the animals and the chirps of the birds filled our day- A perfect place for a candlelight party.
The joy of eating snacks, watching the monkeys play their mirthful pranks was simply exhilarating.
Aari and I were in splits of laughter watching the Grey Langurs, and their hilarious acrobatics.
It was also the first time, we witnessed the graceful leap of the Indian Giant Squirrel or its funny way of eating berries hanging upside down.
Not to be left out, the Hornbill too partook its breakfast along with us. While we heartily ate poha, it merrily munched on a juicy scorpion.
One of the not to be missed ritual at the Old Magazine house was the community bath, the birds enjoyed. Splashing water and diving were just two of the many ways in which they played their water games irrespective of the species. During bath time, they were just birds- irrespective of their colour, shade or size.
These four days seem to drift by so fast and at the end of our time we did not want to return back to our unreal world. The world here seemed so real and so peaceful. Just like this macaques, we went through a whole range of emotions during these four days. From happily amused to peacefully sleepy.
Just looking back to return to this real world again.