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Inter Continental Chennai Mahabalipuram Resort

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Mu son and me were returning from my farm-house near Thenpattinam on a Saturday afternoon, during last week. It took us an hour to reach this place from our farm which is near Kalpakkam. While driving we kept counting the new restaurants and resorts coming up at Mahabalipuram. We knew its going to be really crowded here in a year’s time. So lots of tourists, lots of cars, lots of traffic. Oooh!

We chose to drive at one in the afternoon to escape the scorching Chennai heat which is on “agni natchathiram” mode right now. For guys who are wondering what “agni natchathiram” is, please read further. This phenomenon is when the heat is likely to be much worse than what it is right now. Starting on May 4, it will go on until May 28th, when the mercury will soar to dizzying levels and make you feel that it’s wiser to sit inside a tub of water, be indoors and play chess.

I’m just kidding. We can’t afford to be indoors and earn our bread, so this is Chennai. Hot, Hotter and Hottest are the three words to describe it. Inter Continental Resort Mahabalipuram is bang on the ECR highway of Chennai to Pondicherry. But it has a locational advantage which is refreshingly different from all the resorts bundled up in Mahabalipuram. It is a good fifteen km’s before it. So there are lesser crowds around and you have lot’s of privacy inside this property. I liked it this way. Of course it is a no-no Bar situation here because of the highway ban by the Supreme Court in India. This is just temporary and in a few months the ban will be lifted I guess. So before I let you know more about our lunch, let me take you through this lovely property.

IMG_5559It has long corridors with a geometrical twist combining with lovely shapes of triangles and squares,with bright coloured floors.

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The rooms are neatly built with coconut trees shooting out from large areas of water surrounded . It gives it the calm and oceanic effect always as you walk around.

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As you turn left you have a nice extension of the market cafe called “Melting Pot”. So on houseful days, we can drag our plates here to have a seat and enjoy the Chennai Sun right under its nose.

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Below is a long shot of the rooms, which have lotuses nice and evenly placed and spaced out beautifully.

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As you are walking this straight corridor takes you to the beach. It’s coconut trees all the way, intermingled with some very green plants, the name of which I couldn’t get.

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These are the ones which I just said. Nice green plants with uncommon leaves.

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As you walk further straight you hit the scenic beach.

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I have a never seen a beach bed of this shape and design. It was straight out of Egypt. Looked real stylish.

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IMG_5555Now some pictures of the “Melting Pot” cafe. We were surprised to see a huge crowd for the buffet. To be honest, it was quite an impressive and extensive spread. Starting from the hot appams from the nice counter to the deserts.

 

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I felt sorry for this guy with a guitar who sang some beautiful songs with a real american accent, because, there was no one to applaud or cheer him, since he was in a corner. May be they should re-think to place him at the centre so that he gets the attention he deserves.

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If you want to eat your heart out, you better reserve a room here and take rest. There was so much and so colourful.

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I don’t even have to write anything about the food. It was really tasty with quick service. The desert was so good that this picture says it all.

So keep the good work going . To all the guys who work there, I will be coming to visit the “Tao of Peng” a Chinese restaurant there. Just waiting for my next road trip.

Address of the Property : No. 212 East Coast Rd , Nemelli Village, Perur Post Office, , Kanchipuram District, Tamil Nadu : Chennai ,603104, India : +91-44-71720101

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An Hourglass Figure

imagesGuru Hemchand’s secretary gently opened the CD player and inserted a CD. After a few seconds, “Aum…mmmmmmm” , the enchanting  sound filled the huge hall. When “Aum” is chanted in a chorus, it fills the air, and like tranquil waves, the mind becomes calm and relaxed. The hall was  filled with mostly Westerners and Indians, who closed their eyes and started to feel one with this chant. This early morning session was eagerly awaited by many guests, hmm…… followers, no, disciples……No no. Hemchand didn’t like to tag them with any of these words. They were all like his friends.

Vedhika, who was in her late twenties, married with a son, joined this meditation course two weeks before. She opted to join here because this centre was close to her house and she could just walk, meditate, then walk back home. It sounded easy.   Hemchand was more like a corporate consultant, than a guru. He didn’t have any assistants washing his feet, or people bowing before him. Nor did he have pictures of him plastered all around the place. He spoke when needed. But his mind was razor-sharp, very disciplined and mature. The westerners liked this aspect, since they didn’t have to bother with arrival and departure. No signatures were asked and  no registers were maintained. Above all, the whole course was free. Hemchand was in his mid forties, and had withdrawn from a successful career as a lawyer in the US. This meditation centre was his baby for the past five  years and he had enough money to just sleep in his “easy chair” for the rest of his life. But his mechanical life in the US, taught him the importance of human values, love and relationship. He decided to pack his bags and go back to India.

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Vedhika’s presence at the centre, was watched with envy and irritation by the administrators and participants. She had an hourglass figure, and dressed mostly in sarees, with very low-cut blouses. She daily wore a strong “Bvlgari Jasmin Noir” perfume. It had notes of pink pepper, bergamot and Jasmine and it was the jasmine that stood out most. The overall effect was provocative, sexy, and alluring.  All other participants would be dressed appropriately, but Vedhika intentionally concentrated to draw attraction, rather, cause distraction. After a few days, her presence started to become an eyesore to everyone because she always appeared to talk in length about meditation, vibration and yoga to others, though she always appeared fidgety and restless.

Hemchand studied Vedhika from the day she arrived. He noticed all her flaws, and being a psychic, he knew what she was up to. That day, during the class, Vedhika posed some weird questions to Hemchand. She said ” Sir, I have been meditating for nearly three months and my kundalini is not rising. I have not heard any bell sounds, and no “Devta” has appeared in my vision, as promised by you. I came here to witness all these.” “Please wait” Hemchand interrupted. ” Please meet me in my room later, where your questions will be answered. ”

Vedhika was pleased. She was waiting for such a moment. After the class got over, she was asked to come inside the private room of Hemchand. She went inside and sat down on the broad, yellow floor mat. ” Vedhika , I am sorry. Meditation is not what you think. It is beyond thinking. There are no expectations here.” Hemchand laughed, and continued. ” Bell sounds, Archangels and Devtas are not servants to appear at our will. It is they who decide when to appear, and to whom to appear. It doesn’t matter if they appear or not. It is the great cleansing process which we are doing daily, shedding all our garbage out of our system, which is important. For some it takes minutes, for some it takes years. I presume your married life is not in order. Your husband is not devoting any attention on you because he is busy with his work. So, you are trying to garner attention with your skimpy dressing. Actually you are an innocent victim of this mechanical life pattern. I suggest you bring your husband to me, to have a chat. This can be sorted out easily.

Tears were rolling from Vedhika’s round cheeks. She thought, how did this idiot know about their married life? She then stood up and thanked Hemchand. ” Sorry Guru, I am sorry to have asked so many questions. My husband is returning from the US next week. I promise, we will come together, to meet you. Thank you.

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