COORG IS AN EXOTIC DESTINATION
I have often been asked how I find life in Coorg? For most people, Coorg is an exotic destination, where each day, is like one spent at a resort! Well to be honest it is – you wake up each day to pure, clean air, chirping birds, acres of greenery and trees, long restful walks at your doorstep! And there the resort ambience ends! You also often wake up, to a day when there is no electric power. One learns not to stock one’s fridge for the coming year, so that it can be hastily emptied, to ignore short power cuts and not throw away the food! No power means no geyser-heated water, but one can savour the exotic “gudda” bath if you are lucky to have one, or water heated by a wood fired-boiler, which is fairly commonplace in Coorg. The “gudda” (bathroom) is an old Coorg “joy”. As children, on vacation in Coorg, we stood in line to bathe, in a smoke filled bathroom, with a rough granite floor, pouring mugs of boiling water from a huge metal pot, embedded in a corner of the bathroom, filled with water and fuelled by firewood from the outside! I wonder why modern resorts in Coorg, do not offer this as a “Coorg experience”!
A Coorg day is fairly leisurely. Most often our phones do not work, so there are no “urgent ”calls, only long leisurely conversations, laced with the latest gossip! Working planters have a visit to the estate in the morning. During the wedding season, one can be very busy, attending the ceremony, sometimes driving two hours, to bless the bride and bridegroom, as we often do if the wedding is in our district capital Madikeri. One returns home in the evening happily satiated with good food, conversation and a few visits thrown in and one is ready for bed! Naming ceremonies, and funerals are also part of some days. Kodavas (Coorgs) are a small community, of a few hundred families, who over the years have closely inter-married, so one is always related to the person in question, and a helping hand is always extended in Kodagu. On such occasions, food magically appears on your kitchen counter.
Coorg has a few clubs and enviable golf courses that provide exercise and entertainment. Since distances are involved, club days, are popular when members get together to share a drink.
Coorg is magical! The sunsets are sublime. As you watch the colours in the sky, there is a sense of peace, that no guruji can offer. The night sky is phenomenal, the stars bright and clear. Once you have lived in Coorg, it is difficult to live anywhere else. It is a good, clean life, routine, with no earthshaking excitement, but a natural path that is easy to tread and one soon forgets that phones do not work, one goes to bed by candlelight, and the TV and the world outside do not really matter!
This is my viewpoint after nine years in Coorg. When we moved initially, I was not so placid, especially when I had to reply or access an important email or communicate with the outside world.
Today, it is home and where one goes to recoup ones energy, fritter away one’s day in idle chatter, where everything can wait and no one is in a hurry. Unfortunately help on estates and home is hard to come by, so one has a little more to do than one did in the past!