Day 1 – Chikmagalur

Chikmagalur never changes. Landing in Chikmagalur, the cold surprisingly wasn’t there. It was cold… but it did not hit you, the way it did earlier. Four o’clock in the morning and I end up on the phone as I wait for Dad to pick me up at 6:30. Dad arrives at 6:15 and we set off to the famous Town Canteen for breakfast.

Unfortunately, the Town Canteen, famous for its Dosas, is closed. We roam around the town as it slowly wakes up. Dad has some business around town and we want to finish that off rather than make the drive back later. As I mentioned, Chikmagalur is not a nice place to be in.

There are two main roads in Chikmagalur – The Indira Gandhi Road and the Mahatma Gandhi Road. MG Road is where the traders are located. IG Road is slightly ‘upmarket’. However the roads are being widened and along with it a lot of heritage buildings have had to cut off their existing façade. It’s a mess… construction materials scattered along the main road, mud thrown around as drains are being dug… the list goes on.

Chikmagalur Cathedral - Stopped by for a prayer
Altar in Chikmagalur Cathedral
Chikmagalur Cathedral and the Altar - Stopped by for a prayer
The Christmas crib at Chikmagalur Cathedral
The Christmas crib at Chikmagalur Cathedral
Mallandur Post Office
The Mallandur Village Post Office with the Baba Budan Hills in the background

We complete our work along with breakfast at Soundarya Hotel (the safest bet in Chikmagalur as all other hotels have an affinity for bringing you down with some sort of chronic intestinal disorder). We manage to finish our work in time for lunch and buzz off.

Denora Estate here we come. What a day…. Oh and we need to make a stop at the Mallandur post office to collect our post. No door-to-door postmen here.

Reach the estate and immediately take a tour as Dad says we need to make our presence felt as much as possible around the estate. So, up from 4AM and I am trekking through dense shrubbery as the picking goes on. Following this stay around the yard as the coffee is brought in and then get into the pulping room where the coffee is being pumped, suctioned and pulped.

Bath, accounts with the writer (estate ‘manager of sorts’), rosary, dinner of the freshest vegetables and the best dressed chicken in Chikmagalur and I am off to sleep. 10 PM. I am pooped.

(The photographs featured in this post are the sole property of the author of this blog)