That was the year of Neelakurinji and that was the year of natural disasters. Twice we rescheduled our tickets to Munnar to view the once in a 12 years wonder! We could manage the trip, the third time. We were lucky; we could manage glimpses of Neelakurinji & left Munnar in time. The day we left, they had announced Orange Alert. On our way back to home, we had one last stop in one of our favourite places: Mysuru.
Mysuru & me:
I have lost the count of the number of times I have visited Mysore. It’s a clean city with beautiful cafes, palace like buildings & nicer people. Did I say nicer?! Yes, I did. Nicer than the people from elsewhere. I first visited Mysore back in 2008, then in ‘13, ‘14 & every year afterwards. The city has since then continued to grow in terms of cleanliness, best of the best restaurants & tourism.
In Mysore, I follow a drill: I go to Mysore Palace, buy Sandal Soaps, buy Mysore silk & paintings…and eat to my heart’s contents.
The architectural wonder: Mysore Palace
Mysore Palace is one of the most visited tourist destinations in India. There’s a nominal entry ticket at the palace. You can also buy audio guides. Just put the headphones on, and enjoy! I personally like a human guide around who can tell me stories – real and fake. The best part about hiring a guide is to test the limit of human imagination, when they tell you a couplet, copied from internet while claiming that it’s their own. 🤓🤓🤓 Other times, they will tell you cooked up stories just to get you all excited about the place. I don’t mind that. Not because I tell stories of my own, but because I believe in freedom of speech and expression. What’s the fun in life if you can’t imagine or express?!
Mysore Palace is grand, gorgeous and gigantic. All kinds of art adorn the palace; paintings, wall art, murals, mirror work, perforated windows, arched gateways, coloured pillars, magic with sunlight and shadows, and all kinds of magic that I can’t even begin to explain in words.
What would be the best part about Mysore Palace, one often wonders! Is it any particular spot? Is it the show of paintings by Raja Ravi Verma? Is it the surrounding gardens? Is it the exquisite wood work? Is it the roof art, the tiles, the mosaic or the vivid displays of ivory work? One cannot say.
From one room to another, from courtyard to courtyard, magic spills in the form of art and architecture in this majestic Mysore Palace. It can’t be explained, captured or written about. It can only be seen, felt & experienced.
Have you experienced it yet?
Today and Always:
Opposite to Mysore Palace, is the famous restaurant- RRR. After the visit to Mysore Palace, especially in afternoons, one needs food for other senses too, and thus a meal at RRR. On the banana leaf, they serve rice, lentils, curry and veggies – along with Ghee (clarified butter). Tastes the best when eaten with hands!
One should also not come back without buying a piece of Mysore for themselves. It could be anything: paintings, soaps, sandalwood or a gorgeous drape of Mysore Silk. I would definitely recommend the latter!
Because of pandemic, and other life commitments, I haven’t been able to revisit Mysore since 2018. That’s the last! Now when I think about it, I wonder how it was so easier for me to visit Mysore every year, for so many years till 2018. Was it my love for the place? Or was it vice versa?
But then, who knows?! I might just travel to Mysore one more time before this year ends. Because life is beautifully unpredictable, and anything can happen on weekends!