It was in the month of July….
One item on my to-do list was to explore “Golconda Fort” at the time of Bonalu festival (It is a colorful festival celebrated across Telangana). It has been pending since long, so one fine morning; I picked up my beast (that’s how I refer to my camera) and decided to make it happen.
It’s an hour-long drive to Golconda from my place. Once I reached there, collected my entry ticket and headed towards the fort. On the way I found many groups of people here and there on the side way who were preparing a meal. Now don’t be surprised by thinking why would someone cook in the premise of the fort! Bonalu festival or also called as “Goddess Mahankali Bonalu” is considered a thanksgiving to the Goddess for fulfillment of vows and “Bonam” means the meal or feast which is offered to Goddess Mahankali. The first day of Bonalu is commenced from Golconda fort at Goddess Mahankali temple inside the Golconda fort. Hence, some of devotees prepare the meal as an offering then and there inside the Golconda fort. The place was filled with people who belonged to different religions. I could actually feel the true essence of diversity.
Among one such group was an old man sitting on a boulder. He had a serious look on his face (hardly smiled); seemed to be the eldest in that group and was indulged in serious conversation with his family. His attire and persona caught my eye. I wanted to take a picture of him, but was feeling hesitant at first thinking that he might feel uncomfortable as I was standing close to him. Later I decided to approach him and ask if it is OK to take a picture. He agreed, saying “Sure” with a subtle smile.
To be frank, I didn’t expect he would accept my request; judging by the looks he did not seem to be a friendly person. May be the saying “Don’t judge a book by its cover” is true after all…! While I was busy trying to get my picture right, ladies who were sitting next to him started giggling; they were actually teasing him. Once I was done, I thanked him for being patient with me and moved forward. This was one of such incidents I experienced on that day, which made it special. As I moved ahead, I felt happy that I made it to Golconda during Bonalu and was lucky enough to meet interesting people and witness a colorful event.
P.S.: I have added a couple of more clicks I took on that day to the post.