We are playing ABC Wednesday with Mrs.Nesbitt and her clever and courteous team
It has almost been an year now since we went on this car trip we want to tell you about.
Shadow hadn’t come to live with us yet. For that matter, he wasn’t even born yet!
So it is just me, Buddy, Mummy and Daddy in the pictures.
It was to be Buddy’s first long trip by car, 600 kilometres to be exact.
We were a little worried.
I, Ginger, am a very calm traveller and have been on many road trips with Mummy and Daddy ever since I was a puppy. But Buddy was rather excitable in the car. He would get very restless and keep barking if we stopped even for a minute.
His previous family had told us that he isn’t good in the car. Maybe he hadn’t been around much, which is why he didn’t know what to do in the car.
We say ‘didn’t’ because he is much, much better now after our enthusiastic endeavour to teach him the pleasures of a car ride! We would take him everywhere we went those first few months after he came home - shopping, eating out and of course, daily morning trips to our playground.
He still jumps up and down in the back seat and looks as excited as a little puppy but he enjoys the car. And he no longer barks when we need to stay in the car sometimes.
Anyway, we started on this trip late in the evening and travelled all night. I slept for sometime in between, while Mummy and Daddy took turns at driving.
And believe it or not, Buddy just refused to budge from the front seat! The entire stretch of 600 kms and 12 hours, he didn’t sleep an wink. We were worried he would be sick.
But we needn’t have. He set out to explore the hillside with me, as enthusiastic as ever, as soon as we had checked in at our hotel!!
Mahabaleshwar is a beautiful hill station in the Western state of Maharashtra. Located at a height of 1353 metres, it is amongst one of the world’s evergreen forests. During the British reign, it served as the summer capital of the province of Bombay.
Now, it is not only a popular summer get-away but is also famous for strawberries. A large part of India’s Strawberry produce comes from this little hill-station.
This little guy owns this strawberry farm we went to!
His name was Raja, we found out, meaning ‘A King’!
Did you know strawberries grow on the ground? We didn’t.
They put these sheets of plastic underneath the berries to keep them from getting muddy.
The commercial outlet: You get Strawberry jam, juices, shakes, splits, ice-cream…Yummy!
What they meant was THIS!!
And guess what?
The night we reached this tiny little town was Mummy’s Barkday! We got a baker to bake this cake for her. It didn’t turn out all that good. But no one cared.
We were having fun!
Ice-Cream & Cake at midnight!
As usual, Mummy wandered off into the night with her camera.
Supposedly, at any given moment, 80 % of the town’s population is comprised of tourists! The market place was tiny but bustling with activity and proved to be a treasure throve for a photographer looking to capture the essence of the place!
A Street Vendor & her son
A conscientious one too!
Must be the World’s smallest!
Recharging for the morning!
Breakfast at this pleasant place that served Punjabi Food
You’re supposed to play this drum if you liked the food, just like you jingle a little bell in Pizza Hut!
The sign doesn’t lie!
Mahabaleshwar is famous for a number of ‘scenic points’ on hill tops which serve as excellent viewing points.
This is Dinosaur Point
Do you see why now?
Back at our hotel. What good is a swimming pool if they do not allow Labradawgs into it?
Finally, Homeward bound…
Mid-afternoon snack, on the move
The Woods were lovely…
and miles to go …
before we sleep….
For those looking for directions:
Take the straight, simple route - Hyderabad to Sholapur (National Highway 9) - leave NH and take state highway to Baramati - NH 4 towards Pune - divert away at Wai - Panchgani - Mahabaleshwar. Safe, easy, busy route. Plenty of re-fuelling stations, for the car, humans & dogs!Took us exactly 12 hours with about 4 stops.
We made the mistake of diverting into Satara forest route from Sholapur while going. Very lonely stretch, absolutely nothing around, not even a re-fuelling station in site till you reach Wai. Better avoid this route.