"Venkataramana govinda", the words which can be heard at the temple situated on Tirumala where Lord venkateshvara " Tirupathy Balaji" resides. My mother gave me a call 6 months before and said "my dear son... mm.. derest son", as I am the only son to my mother and father, "I am planning to go for a darshan at Tirupathy temple, please arrange the journey".
As you all dont know, I need to say that I plan everything suddenly. This was also a sudden planning and I went to Nagpur my home town, arranged my tickets and took my grandmother, father, mother with me to Tirupathy. We landed at Tirupathy Railway station, adjusted with toota phoota telugu which I knew and took a taxi to reach Tirumala. My mother was advised by a neighbour to take rooms at Srinivasa ( a residence suitable to keep suitcases and leave directly to temple). we reached above and asked the driver to show rooms to stay, he pointed his fingers towards a big building and said " please take rest at this place". My mother insisted, " No we want to go to Srinivasa"..the guy replied that there was no hotel or lodge at Tirumala named Srinivasa. But she was worried about the money and goods within suitcases that I need to take back to my work place after we are back from Tirupathy.
Ok we decided to look for some paid hotels and found them to be already booked by someone else.Then we returned back by bus to the same building and started searching for rooms available. To be frank Tirupathy is the best place to worship if you have gone with a person who went there before, otherwise "Swamiye saranam Aiyappa".
I discovered after continous search, that the rooms can only be booked after 6 AM; the time was 11.30 PM, too long to stay back with all the luggage. I started searching and asking, finally discovered there are lockers where you can keep the items and get the amount paid for them back while leaving. The best thing is you have nothing described for the visitor who is there for the first time, no police men understand language other than telugu and baapre!, they do not understand my telugu.
when I reached the locker room it was closed which was scheduled to open only by 6 AM. We were told by a policeman to visit the temple atleast by 3 AM and be in queue, the queue will start by 8 AM and will have darshan completed by 11AM. I paid the lock room watchmen a pleasing smile with my hands into my pockets indicating a piece of paper where the image of Mahatma Gandhi was inscribed. Hurray! I got two lockers, where I placed our items and went to temple. We somehow found the path to it on the free line and got into a room when it was ending. After a couple of hours the room was locked from outside leaving a lot of people inside. All bald faces unable to be recognized. I asked some of them whether this line was for the darshan. No reply, because they did not understand whatever I said.
We were in the room by 2AM. the police man who advised us said the room whould open by 8 AM. I thought to have a sleep and get up in the morning and have a bath. At 6 am in the morning my mother called me from the uncomplete sleep. Comeon! standup the people are in line see the queue is going to form. We rushed and got into the line, but it was noticed after a while that it was line to collect milk given to the persons staying in the room. I went back to my place. After a couple of hours again a line formed, now I was able to understand this was the line for some other eatables. Soon I becme too smart to understand that there were a lot of queues for eatabls. I was bit angry to get no reply from any people and being shut in a room which was locked from all sides, so I ate nothing being provided. "Only khana no darshan!". This door opened at 12 PM and I with no food from the previous day visited lord venkateshvara with full devotion.
It was my best experience in life. Now I have decided to learn telugu and Kannada....
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