An interesting outing on Saturday (July 14) to explore farm land on the Bangalore-Mysore highway.
After setting off at 7 a.m, the motely crew(my cousin, the driver, my dog and me) made the customary stop at Shivalli. Known for it's signature Kadubu Idli, other South Indian (vegetarian only) delicacies are not bad either.
The first rumblings of trouble surfaced right then. My driver Ramu seemed to be heavily biased towards the restrooms there. Inquiry into this matter soon turned out to be moot as his discomfort and pain were evident from the way he was sweating and tottering around. Apparently it was food poisoning and he was not looking good.
I sprang to take control of the situation, placing Ramu in the back along with our trusted canine Sol and we drove to Maddur where we got him a packet of glucose and made him have some of it with water. While here, we spied an elderly gentleman making parotas on an open tava outside. We made a quick note to check this out on our return as our Shivalli meal was still sitting pretty heavily in our ample stomachs.
Mandya around 10:30. We were supposed to meet the caretaker/agent/advisor near the bus-stand but he wasn't there. So, we stopped on the side of the road and I let Sol out. As was bound to happen, he was soon the center of attraction and it looked like the slowly increasing crowd expected a few tricks and exhibition of some sort of talent from our goldie. The fact that he just sat there with his tongue hanging out didn't seem to dampen the enthusiasm and expectation of the mob. The first one to touch Sol soon became the trusted expert on the subject of house-bred dogs. A frenzy of biscuit feeding and random name calling of Sol ensued.
Luckily, our agent made an appearance from thin air right then. Unluckily, Ramu had disappeared in search of the all important loo as his diarrhea was in full flow, literally.
Finally, with everyone back in the car, we now moved on to the real goal of our trip, the land. Mr. Caretaker was in the back seat, but with me in the middle, protecting him from Sol. The caretaker seemed to have a petrified ignorance of Sol’s existence.
We did see the land and on the way back, as Ramu had still not recovered from his ailments, my cousin decided to drive and I took the front seat. Now, we literally had a back seat driver!
On the way back, we stopped at the Maddur hotel where we had seen the parotas. A bulls-eye on our hotel choice. The food was outstanding and the cook, a boy of about 15 took great pride in the dishes he placed before us and constantly asked us about how we liked each dish. These were the egg parotas, chicken curry and dry mutton. Most mouth watering fare and the experience was made even more interesting by the drink order taker. I need to dwell on this a bit here so bear with me.
I asked him for a ‘Fanta’ and he wanted to know if I wanted ‘Sprite’. On clearing up this first hurdle, he wanted to know if I wanted ‘Fanta’ to drink. I nodded. Next he enquired if I wanted it right then. Convinced by my vigorous nodding, he put his hand into the cooler and got me a ‘Sprite’. I shook my head and showed him the empty bottle of ‘Fanta’ I had just polished off. We finally reached a happy conclusion and I got my ‘Fanta’
No more adventures along the way and we got back safe and sound to Bangalore by 4 p.m.
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