This week's destination was Virinchipuram, which is 15km from Vellore. There is an old and famous temple dedicated to Lord Shiva called Markabandheeshwarar Temple.
We(myself, Lokesh ) took a bus at 7.15 in the morning from Guindy. Within 15 minutes of journey, the entire bus was sleeping except for the three of us and ofcourse the driver and conductor. I wonder how people can sleep in the midst of all the noise and the frequent jerks. I had to stand all the way till Walajah. But even if I managed to get a seat, I can never sleep during bus travel. After a tiresome travel, worsened by hunger we reached Vellore by 10.15 and filled ourselves with leftovers of a nearby hotel.
What a dusty town, Vellore is??? Anywhere you see, there is only dust and the place is very, very hot. I couldn't find anything interesting in the menu of the hotel either.
Next was the 15 minutes bus journey from Vellore to a place called Seduvalai. We took an omni bus which played music inorder to attract people. In reality they only make more noise than sound. Typical of what we can expect from a rural bus, they had a run down casette with all lovelorn songs you can imagine. It was very interesting to note that the people in the bus cared a damn for the cacophony and happily indulged in their own conversations.
In case any of you want to see what reckless driving is, stand in this highway for 5 minutes, you are bound to see atleast 2 close calls.
Virinchipuram is another 5 minutes travel from Seduvalai by autorickshaw. By the time, we reached the temple it was 11.30 and all the pujas were over by then. So we had to wait till 4.00 in the evening.
The temple is very large, with very high walls and large prakarams reminding us of the big temples of the South. Its architecture can be rated among the best. We spent the entire afternoon in a mandapam, which I think is used during festive occasions to keep the Urchavar. Inspite of the very high walls, the place was quite windy which saved us from the hot sun.
The temple seems to be date back to the early centuries, but I couldn't get the proper sthalapuranam of the temple. It is believed that there is a secret passage from the temple to the fort of Vellore, which was used by the royal family in case of emergency.
It was 8.00pm when we started for Chennai, from Virinchipuram after completing all the pujas. It was a great day on the whole and a different experience from the mundane things I do otherwise.
The main entrance and Huge Nandhi (Sacred Bull)
There was an abandoned madapalli which was very artistic
High walls of the inner prakaram. See the coconut trees dancing in the strong winds
Kodimaram, Deity of Natarajar and the Secret Passage to Vellore
Beautiful mandapam , Feeling sleepy in the breeze
Arumuga Swamy , Getting prasadham
Leisure...relaxing. Sharad Haksar kinda photo. Very cryptic and at the same time descriptive. I took this when we were resting at the mandapam in the temple. My favorite one.