In Chennai, there isn’t just one spot which is my favorite, but many such places. But, I am going to pick one that I frequently visit – Marina Beach.
Marina has a charm that makes it very personal for me to connect and visit it every now and then.
Marina has seen a part of my soul – my best of laughter and sorrowful tears.
Marina is about 6.5kms long (From Island grounds to Light house) and has been my regular running path.
Marina has allowed me to sing to its waves, shiver to its thunder & lightning, dance to its uncovered rain.
Marina has made me see Chennai in its truest sense – from the rag pickers to the owner of an Audi, it treats everyone the same and takes them into its arms with no bias.
Marina is home when I need to pause and reflect on life.
Marina reminds me of a future ahead of me – for its been a witness to my life and growing up, in some sense.
Marina makes me feel I am home, everytime I land in Chennai after traveling out.
Marina, we will continue to have this bond, for we also made a deal to see you when I turn 60 years old. Probably with my special someone, Sriram.
Today’s run was extremely special for many reasons.
This was my first run with The Wipro Chennai Marathon.
I’d signed up for a 10k. And, I was not at all motivated to run this morning, for many many reasons.
But, then, running is not just a physical pursuit but a mind game as well. I told myself, that I am not quitting and would participate. I labelled it as ‘Hope’ run in my head and reached the start point.
Through my run, I felt humanity, for others and myself.
I rediscovered myself through this journey.
It was a run where I sweated out all my negativity, insecurities, doubts, unpleasantness and everything that would not help me progress.
And, for the stats, I completed the run at an average speed of 6.31 kmph, which is by far my best.
I took 01:20:46 duration to complete the entire run.
Also, Meera Sundar, Prasanna Kumar, Karthik Natarajan: Today’s run is dedicated to you folks! 🙂
#TWCM2015 was conducted today i.e. Jan 31 2016, to celebrate the spirit of Chennai, that suffered rain floods in Dec 2015.
Chennai (fondly known as Madras) – is the city I live in. I am extremely glad I spent most of my years here. Having traveled quite a bit, I count on my blessings to be back here in Madras – where I completely belong to.
The city is charming for the kind of lovely experiences it provides me with – day in and day out.
This beautiful Madras exposed me to so many lovely things – from the temples to churches, from the book stores to libraries, from the theatre acts to movies, from the kutcheris to jazz concerts, from the road side shops (pottikadais) to posh malls, from home-cooked food to the endless cuisines available across many eatery options, from monuments to museums and beaches, bus-train-auto rides, a solid education for over 15 years, and most importantly paving way for me into so many amazing people’s lives – family, friends, well wishers.
I know that I may get in and get out of this city in the future too, but Madras is my first love and will always have a special place for the overloaded memories.
My love for food, eating, cooking begins and ends at home. Mostly with paati’s (grandmom) and amma’s (mother) samayal.
But, if I am allowed to explain further about my gourmet skills, I would like to give some context. We as a family moved our base to Chennai in 1994 and I moved in and out of Madras aka Chennai for various reasons in the past.
Currently, I am a happy resident here – pursuing music and working at a tech-based company. Chennai is home and became an integral part of me for two key reasons – music and food – necessarily in that order.
Rewind 20 years back, I was sent to classes to learn Carnatic vocal and violin. As a kid, every time I identified a raga, I got rewarded with some mouth-watering food. It didn’t stop with just raga identification. In a four-walled room, my gurus became compelling narrators and this gave birth to fascinating stories. As a pampered student in many ways, my gurus, while weaving stories, made me relish a few home-made delicacies. Some include thenkuzhal, javarasi payasam, vazhaipoo vadai, kandathippili rasam, rava kesari, panankalkandu pal, rava idlis, puliyodarai, adai-aviyal, so on and so forth. These experiences enriched my taste – music as well as food.
However, the epicure in me grew because of appa. He is a connoisseur of food and loves to experiment. Together, we embraced places like – the Woodlands drive-in, Rathna Cafe, Rayar’s Mess, Jannal kadai near Kapali koil, Mami Kadai, Karpagambal Mess, all the bhavans (especially in and around Mint/ Broadway area), Gnanambika Mess during December season to name a few.
Today, times have changed, I have changed too. Thanks to my friends and exposure to many a place outside Madras, I enjoy eating / cooking, anything and everything vegetarian. And, this translated into exploration for vast variety of food options in Chennai – Namma Cafe, Orchards, Dewberrys, Ox & Tomato, Food point, Kolkata Chat Corner, ID at Sathyam Cinemas, Fruitshop on Greams Road, Wonton, Kobe Sizzlers, Kryptos, Little Italy, Pind, Rajdhani, Lloyd’s Tea House.
I do believe I can eat.