Monday, April 7, 2014

Good Mornings Are Happy Mornings Too, Nowadays!

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Sunrise over the Bay of Bengal!  I took it today morning!


 All my friends who know me, know that both I and my husband go for our morning walks regularly.  We had stopped it in our old house because of the heavy traffic and mud road pollution, for a couple of years.  We were using the exercise cycle then.  Now, we have started going out in the morning again in the new house.  The area where we go for walk now, is, sort of, made for morning walks.  The road towards the beach road (Elliots beach, Besant Nagar),  has got avenue trees on both sides, mostly neem trees which have started blooming now. The neem flowers,  have got their own fragrance! We start around 5.15 am and come back around 6.45 am...the to and fro distance is around 4 km. We buy flowers, vegetables etc. on the way!  I had mentioned about the flower woman here.


The best area/road, for morning walkers...serene, peaceful!

We see all types of walkers here...young children, young adults, middle aged people, old people...everyone.  Some people walk, some jog, some walk very slowly/sit on the seat most of the time enjoying the scenery.   We have noticed that the area is more crowded on Mondays and Saturdays!  People might decide on Sunday to start walking 'from Monday'! Saturday is a holiday and they might think they have got more time! Some walk in groups, chatting, some hear shlokas, some film music...One elderly person drives his car and when he gets out of the car and walk with a cane, we guess that he has got some problem.  He drags one leg.  We admire his spirit.

Another elderly person comes by car with his young grandson who has got some problem.  Plays Frisbees with  him.  A couple walk with their hands held in front of their chest, just move them according to their pace!  Both of them walk in the same manner.  I see some foreigners too, most of them jog! Some do meditation in the sand, some do exercise on the pavement.  Some bring their children along with them on holidays...it is fun to watch small children running before their mothers and mothers shouting at them! Some young girls and boys come alone with music fixed in their ears! Most of the walkers are elders and they come in pairs. Many middle aged women wear chudidars now...easy to walk?! Include me in that category! Chennai is changing in that way!

It used to be quite dark until a couple of weeks back in the early morning but now, since the summer has started, sun comes out early and it is hot...typical Chennai weather. Now, to some pictures!

Click on the pictures to have a good view, please.

The area is full of stray dogs.  Some people give them biscuits.  They never fight with each other while taking biscuits from people! We see all sorts of 'walking dogs'! Labradors, pooches, poms...! Some people give them (stray dogs),  biscuits and they take them without fighting with each other.  They wait and catch biscuits when they are thrown at them, in turns! We sit here for 10-15 mts. and watch people and the Nature!

This area is full of crows! Here, they come to pick food particles dropped by the previous evening's visitors. One 'beach cleaning' group cleans the beach often and boards are kept everywhere to drop wastes in bins...we saw the bins in 4-5 places! But our people will never change.

This is beach gym! I always notice quite a number of youngsters using the gadgets!

This is the Aloe vera juice seller! They sell banana stem juice, arugam pul juice (Bermuda grass?!) etc. too on the pavements! Tender coconut sellers also can be seen.
He keeps the aloe vera pulp in the steel vessel.  It looks quite clean.  The aloe vera leaf is slit open by a knife, the pulp drawn out by a spoon. Then  he puts the pulp in the smaller vessel, mashes them with a wooden masher (we call it maththu, in Tamil).  It looks foamy.  He puts quarter cup pulp in a cup, adds curd and buttermilk, mixes and gives to the customers.  Without buttermilk or curd, it might taste slightly bitter, he said. It costs Rs. 20 and it tasted bitter...we had it today morning! He laughingly said, 'bitter things are good for health'!

This fisherman is very close to the beach.  We saw him lifting a small net full of fish, often! The boat was going up and down in the waves!

When we went near the water, we noticed this man,  tying a small wooden plank (5 x 3 inches) with a nylon rope.  I noticed small oval beads at equal distances of 4-5 inches in the rope.  He had earth worms in his hands.  He plucked the worms into small pieces, pinned them in a thin pin and inserted inside the beads.  Then, holding one end of the rope, he threw the plank  with worms, into the sea! And waited! It was getting late, so I didn't wait to see how many fish he caught on that day!

The beach sand is full of Snacks shops selling bajji, fish cutlet etc. All the waste was thrown on the sand! Most of the shops had Idea/aircel mobile advertisements!

Crows, crows...everywhere because of the food particles!
These boxes never overflow...all wastes are seen on the sand!
We never get bored, walking on this road! Some sort of entertainment is there on most of the days!  It was 'beach volleyball',  tournament, last Saturday! The tent was ready!

Beach volleyball net and tent! The next day the area was full of waste plastics!/torn posters etc.!


Group exercise on the beach road! Groups like this, come often and start exercising...just for a day or two! Different groups at different places on the road and sands, exercise, do skipping...interesting to watch!

One day, this group of young children were dancing and somebody was taking a video! Classical dance with classical music.  It was nice to watch.  Many people have taken photographs!
This has become a permanent attraction for me...the sparrows! Notice the green home made bird feeder! A male sparrow is sitting on the grill, at one corner! I hear their chirps always on this road.  They seem to love old houses, not flats! These houses have bushes, small flowering plants etc. unlike our concrete platforms surrounding the buildings.  So many birds seem to live here!
Hmmm...we try our best not to skip our morning walks.  It is good for health plus entertaining! We come back home with a happy feeling!


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18 comments :

Renu said...

wow..what musings Sandhya..loved your morning walk:)..lucky to be living in such an area..I wish we create less litter everywhere..

KParthasarathi said...

Wow.What a great blessing you have close to your house!!The description of your early morning walk,the ambiance,the attractions and distractions, the varied people in different ages enjoying the beach front and the exercise combined with pleasure make me wish that I resided in such a locality.
If continued daily, it would do wonders to health of both of you.
The pictures are all nice.
But I must point out that beaches on the East coast in USA are very clean and with rest room facilities.Opinions may differ but hawkers and their stands rob the beaches and the walk ways of their beauty.

Sandhya said...

RENU: Hmmm...we have to wait a long time for people to come to senses to keep the surroundings clean. It is not enough just to keep our houses clean.


KPARTHASARATHY: Yes. The hawkers should not be allowed in the sands...but people who take food with them will litter! People should take care of the beach. They themselves are sitting with their small children on the sands. Children play with their hands. If people think in that angle, they might stop throwing things on the sand which invite dogs (their shits!) and crows...god, so many crows! They tried to stop hawkers at some time, but something stopped the govt. from implementing it! You can guess what!

We had been to Laguna beach in California, which is not as beautiful as our beach, but it was very very clean. If I remember correctly, the rest rooms were in the shopping complex, opposite to the beach, there. Some toilets were blocked on the day we visited the place! Water was overflowing outside the toilets. It might be a rare incident, though, I know. Even small kids never threw anything on the ground over there. We should train our children to keep the surroundings clean from very young age.

As I have mentioned here, most of the bajji booths/carts had mobile advertisements! Big business!


Destination Infinity said...

This beach was neat and was without any shops (at least on the beach sand) until a few years back. Now Marina looks neat and all the shops seem to have come here!

This is a nice locality. I used to visit this beach frequently before many years, but these days I don't go there much. Good to see the beach area again through your lens.

Destination Infinity

Rama Ananth said...

I presume you are describing the Beasant Nagar beach. If so, it used to be a very clean beach, while I was living their with my parents. From our balcony we could see the far off beach( it was only some 8-10 mins) from our house.
Then everything got blocked with multi storied buildings, then came the shops and the garbage, and lots of people going for their daily walks
I don't know why we spoil our natural surroundings. Shops can be there but they can maintain certain cleanliness.
Even abroad there are so many shops on the pavement in New York but they never throw things outside the dustbin.
when we go there we behave properly, but in our own country we behave like idiots.
Nice captures. Can't believe they have an open gym too.

manjujoglekar said...

What a 'happy' post, Sandhya!

Judging from the photos, your morning walk is evidently a very pleasant one! Thanks for sharing. :)

Proactive Indian said...

A beach is really relaxing, and must be great for an early morning walk. You are lucky to live within walking distance of the beach.

No laughter clubs/groups at your beach?

Usha Pisharody said...

I loved reading this, slowly and leisurely (we've finished lunch, Paru and Kunji are resting :) )- and it brings to me the lovely time I am now having, on MY morning walks here, where my son stays. It's like a hill stations, though in Vizag only - and the number of people who walk, what they do, and how they do what they do, that interests me too!

But can be nowhere near as gently descriptive as you are Sandhya - the graciousness with which you have brought us to the Beach Road in Chennai is really so comforting!
So you're having magicalmornings as well :) :)

Shail Mohan said...

I am so glad to have had the chance to walk this route with you, and also watch all these sights! :)
I quite enjoyed reading this, Sandhya :)
We have a lot to learn about civic sense. We as a country have false pride about useless things, but none about our beautiful surroundings or keeping it clean. :(

Sandhya said...

DESTINATION INFINITY: The roads look so beautiful and peaceful in the morning hours. We feel very happy while walking in the morning with gentle breeze, watching others like us, walking...

This was supposed to be a happy post but because of the discussion of the debris in the sand, esp., the main purpose (happy walking in the morning!) is gone! But this is going to be like this! Still, mornings are peaceful, thank god!


RAMA ANANTH: I had posted a photo of a small 1 and a half year old boy, walking and dropping the orange peel in the dustbin, in a post about London's National Showcaves. Even, we adults, do not think of doing that, here, in our country, though it is catching up slowwwly, now. Way to go!

Yes, this is Besant Nagar beach and they have a gym here!


MANJU JOGLEKAR: Thank you, Manju! If I hadn't touched the sand and shops, this post would have been a more 'happier' post. But it IS a happy post! Mornings are peaceful mornings here!


PROACTIVE INDIAN: I have read about a 'Besant Nagar Laughter club' in the paper, but haven't seen in the beach, though. I am still new to this area.


USHA PISHARODY: I can imagine the peacefulness when all are resting in a house where a new baby has arrived! Everybody will be busy all the time otherwise!

Normally, we think that Andhra means heat like we think that Chennai means heat! Good to know that the temperature is good over there.

Yes, I should have used the words 'magical mornings' in the title! Thank you, Usha!


SHAIL MOHAN: I was thinking of you while posting photos in this post...you would remember the area.

Nobody knows/understands the beauty of our beaches in Chennai, both Marina and Besant Nagar (Elliot's) beach. The whole area near the water is full of just sand, beautiful sand and no rocks. But we can notice the beauty only in the mornings and not in the evenings with all the shops and crowds.

I didn't mention or post photos of people sleeping on the pavements. They don't look like beggars but just homeless. Well...this is another subject, totally. Thank you, Shail!

SG said...

Thanks for sharing these beautiful photos. Now I am home sick.

Jeevan said...

I have watched sunrise only couple of times in Elliot beach... a good sight to hold without emerging shops in morning. Interesting photos on the morning activities on bessie... inspiring to wake up early and visit the beach or at least breath fresh air.

I think the crows are doing the cleaning job well with the food waste dropped around, helping man, who doesn't care on environment. Shops both on besant nagar and marina disturbs the beautiful sight of our famous beaches. Every day I drink half a tumbler of herbal juice that contains aloe vera, green tea, noni ect... which I take in empty stomach make me feel good and free urination and digestion.

Rasam said...

We once lived near ECR.. but never had the time for a breezy walk.. Though elliots beach is messy it still is better than marina.. enjoy these walks and keep updating us also!

Onkar said...

nice photographs and good account

sweetyshinde said...

I am lucky enough to stay close to the race course. Of curse, as in all lucky things, I hardly ever go there. Wish to change that soon.

We too have these health-drink providers squatting at racecourse gate. I wonder how many of them make anything authentic. I mean, Ayurveda needs a particular mix of particular eatables.

Varunavi said...

Lovely account of your morning walks sandhya. Never done that..maybe once kids are big, i can take time in the mornings and go for a walk.

Lovely pics.

Rachna said...

That was a lovely tour, Sandhya. It reminds me of the huge parks in Bombay where I used to go for walks. It was complete with morning walkers and joggers along with multiple vendors selling coconut water, various juices etc. It is a thriving community of its own.

Sandhya said...

SG: I noticed that I had not acknowledged some comments here, sorry! Thank you, SG. Some things are really good here, SG and this is one of them!


JEEVAN: Your angle of the use of the crow is good but there are too many of them in Besant Nagar! They don't allow other small birds to enter their area!

Unless people realise, throwing of waste is going to be here for sure.

Good to know that you take the juice in the morning. It is very good!


RASAM: We love our morning walks here. Unlike in the evenings, the area is calm and quiet in the mornings! Nowadays, they have introduced a few hours of no traffic on the beach road on Sundays. Children play on the roads, roller skate, dance...a good thing to see.


ONKAR: Thank you, Onkar!


SWEETYSHINDE: Here all are pure juices and single ones, no mixing. I see many people buy them. I had tasted the aloe vera juice only once!


VARUNAVI: Yes, we can't go for morning walks when we have got school going children. Remember this after some years, Saritha!


RACHNA: Yes, many people survive by selling these juices. People definitely buy them if they are convinced of the hygiene side!

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