We parked the car next to the house of Sri’s friend and decided to walk up to the Bhongir fort. Sri’s friend actually works in USA, and was not aware that we are visiting his ancestral home with an American.
The ascend to the fort is very steep and within less than 5 minutes I was panting and remembering all the aloo parathans, pizzas and burgers that I have gulped down for better part of my life. I could not keep pace with Tom and Sri and asked them to continue on their journey while I decided to rest on the stairs to the fort and take some pictures. While I was panting in the heat I saw some local guys sleeping on the hard rock in the shade of some trees.
I guess once you are tired it does not matter where you are you get your 8 hours of sleep. (Although a part of me thought they are drunkards, but one of the guys had made a neat pillow from his shirts, drunkards don’t do that) The challenge with lazy bones like me is that we do not do any physical exertion and do not get good nights sleep.
Drunkards Don’t Make Pillows
While I was clicking pictures Tom and Sri also came back I was amazed how quickly they were able to come back after climbing to the summit. On a little interrogation it dawned on me that they too have come back just from the next corner. Talk about being city bred folks.
So we decided to go and see the family of Sri’s friend, fortunately his father was at home and in true Indian style welcomed us and offered us cold drinks and biscuits to replenish our energy. Sri and uncle as we were calling him, caught up on old times while I and Tom were looking amazingly out of the window and looking at the fort. We could literally take our hands out of the window and touch the periphery of the fort! Ok I made this up but you get the gist?
Uncle was kind enough to give us a tour of his fields and the ancestral home where uncle’s father still lives we could not meet him as he has gone out of town for some work.
Both the sons of uncle lives in US one of them who is Sri’s friend is a software engineer and the other one is a Neurosurgeon , but uncle has proudly mentioned their names on the name plate of the house. I was wondering who will continue the tradition of tilling the family land. I don’t think farming is not very lucrative to you if you are a Neurosurgeon or software engineer in USA.
We decided to have a look at the fields and the ancestral house of Uncle’s family which were next door. Due to water scarcity uncle only plants half the field every year and then plants the other half next year. This helps in replenishing the water tablet as well as nutrients in the soil.
Rare Black Ganesha Idol with Trunk Curved towards Left
We saw an old Ganesha Idol in sitting in the field, uncle informed us that it is a few hundred years old and was found during tilling the fields. The significance of the idol is that its trunk is curved towards right against the convention of being curved towards left. This as per the legend is the mark of a hidden treasure with Ganesha being the protector of the treasure. I asked him if they tried to dig deeper to find the treasure to this he simply replied his crop is his real treasure and he has no interest in anything for which he has not worked. I guess hard working folks like him are a rarity these days. From the income of a small farmer he educated his kids and was able to send them to USA for higher education. Suddenly my respect for the old man multiplied many times and I realized I do not have an ordinary farmer in front of me but the vanguard of a generation that still believes in the idiom ‘ SaadaJeevanUchhVichar” or High thinking and simple living.
Tom was really amazed with his experience with an Indian farmer and their simple home he thanked uncle many time for his hospitality and taking time to show us his fields and ancestral home. We clicked some more pictures and decided to hit back the country road to take us back home to Hyderabad.