Wednesday, June 16, 2004

Oregon

Posting an earlier write up of my trip to Oregon.

Continuing my kshethradam of visits to torment hapless cousins . This time it was the turn of Vijay & Radha to be forced to play hosts.

A visit Vijay's house doesn't need an explicit invitation, a 24 hour prior notice
in the form of a threatening email is enough. In my case it was a 1 month prior email warning him of impending danger.

A trip here was bound to be different from most other trips you I have taken. Vijay has 2 things working in his favor

1)He has a trusted driver from Andhra Pradesh called Subba Rao subaru) to take you places.

2) He has a cell phone which is also a grinder, washing machine, mini car tool kit, fish tank, air pump, kitchen sink and a GPS. It sometimes even reads horoscopes.

In the short span of 2.5 days we went to camping in 'aruvidai nachiyaar' state beach park and an amazing ride in sand dunes.

Camping is defnitely a very unique experience for those people who have not done it. When I heard about it on phone, I thought "yuck ..hard work! sweat, toil in the sun.. hard work .. hard work". But I was wrong as radha & vijay insisted. The camp tent is so sophisticated that it can be pitched in less than 2 hours. Ofcourse there were 2 strong grown up males(ahem! me and vijay) to set up the tent which should make the work even more easy. But the two strong grown males had some other qualities to them. They were lazy and completely useless.

So, there we were, vijay and myself taking care of Ananya, while Radha set up the tent in double quick time. Since Ananya was also helping Radha to set up the tent, myself and vijay didnt have anyone to take care of so... oh well.. we simply sat there and
watched.

The camping site itself was picturisque with tall trees in the form of a slope. This reminded me of the trees and campgrounds in Marlinspike hall of Tintin comics. The total calmness and the sunlight between the trees was simply out of the world.

We lit camp fire and also cooked "cholam" in that fire. There are air inflatable beds and other gadgets which makes life comfortable inside the tent. Unless ofcourse Vijay anna's cell phone morphes itself into a bed cum heater device.

The other best part of the trip was the ride in sand dunes. Myself and Vijay were given a vehicle each and you can drive in the sand dunes as fast as you can. We got stuck in the sand more often than not and spent most of our alloted time extrciating the vehicle from the mud. But its definetely worth the experience.

For people who just want to spend a relaxed time, Vijay & Radha vacation home association, has a wonderful house facing big, big empty grasslands. In the evening you can sit on the easy chair and look the vast empty fields and spend time consuming industrial quantities of delicious dosai and bisi bela bath conjured up by
Radha. There is also the pear tree and various other trees, from which the house gardener who looks exactly like vijay will pluck fruits and give you some.

I got to spend time with Ananya. Ananya is the sort of child who is decidedly cute in everything she does. Her smile is cute as per the state law of oregon. She sometimes wondered, why I kept calling her "pullai" "sengamalam" & "vadivukarasi" and she kept insisting that it werent her names. Most of her photos with a smiling face is like a sensitive potrait of a wonderful flower. I wish her advance birthday greetings.