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Feast for Mind, Body and Soul at Sagara

We landed at the railway station at 7:15 in the morning and were greeted by a crisp, refreshing atmosphere and breath-taking greenery that infused us with energy. We were a team of eighteen as we entered the Tempo Traveller sent by Anandji. The short ride to Uppahalli witnessed a vehicle full of youngsters just awed by the greenery outside the window.

YFS-Blog-Feast for Mind, Body and Soul at Sagara (1)Most of us, if not all, had the tastiest breakfast of our lives with hot idlies and a combination of molten jaggery and homemade ghee. Divine!

We all dove into an energetic conversation with Anandji about various topics. We learned about rainwater harvesting and gobar gas. We visited the well-kept “Goshala.” Then, we all planted thebestmango and jackfruit saplings from neighbouring states.

 

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Mechanism for groundwater recharge through rainwater harvesting

Poly House

Poly house

Then came the feast! Feast for the eyes – a visit to the Poly House. There are two poly houses each with an area of 0.25 acres. The same varieties of daisies, carnations and vegetables were grown in each poly house; but, one with organic methods and the other with chemical fertilizers and pesticides! There were more pests on the leaves of the daisies grown with pesticides.

It was now time to satisfy the hunger pangs… the elaborate lunch was sumptuous and delicious. We then had interaction with a farmer and his wife who own just over an acre of land. The rice he is able to grow is not enough for his family he is not able to grow anything else because there is no provision of proper irrigation. This, in spite of the fact that in Sagara, there is 1 crore litre of rainfall on 1 acre of land for the year.

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inside the Poly House

As dusk approached, the power went off! Under the dim solar lamp, we sat engrossed in a discussion about the needs of the farmers with Anandji. The only distraction was the sound of frogs and the occasional flicker of the firefly. When we need to get the motor fixed or buy an item, we either make a phone call or go to Quickr; in the city, we take this access to service providers for granted. Where will the farmer go? There is no low-cost, efficient system to help farmers benefit from basic electrical, mechanical services.

We had a good dinner mulling over the umpteen challenges faced by the farmer.

The next day, we attended “Gurupoornima Utsav” and then headed to Jog Falls. WOW! The beauty was overwhelming. Before returning to Uppahalli, we took a detour and walked into a paddy field. As far as your eye could see, there were paddy fields. The expansive fields, with the dark clouds, hint of the rainbow and a slight drizzle was an experience that cannot be described by mere words. One had to be there to really grasp the effect nature has and the beauty it holds.

Once we all returned home, to Bangalore, we all felt that we lost something. Whether it was the idlies, the beauty, the rain, the calmness or the contagious passion of Anandji… one thought was common… visiting a serene village should be made more often.

Rohan shares,

“Had a great experience. Learnt a lot from this trip. Really admire Anandji for his excellent thoughts, humanity, simplicity, humbleness, sense of humour, love and affection towards nature ,animals, people and the list goes on…I was very much impressed with his recycling methods which he calls “Giving it back to the Mother Earth”.Thanks to YFS for giving this opportunity to be part of the team and making this trip wonderful and memorable.”

YFS-Blog-Feast for Mind, Body and Soul at Sagara (7)Nitin was inspired to write a poem:

A Farmer to Remember –

We headed off to sagara, on a rainy weekend

So blissful it was, we forgot that it too had to end

Bear with me, to share a snippet of Mr Anandji’s wisdom

A lifetime of learning , from the farms of freedom

Need is to have more plants and trees grown

YFS-Blog-Feast for Mind, Body and Soul at Sagara (5)Love them as they do have a life of their own

It’s a god’s gift,just preserve it Water is not a human right, do not fight over it.

To make money, do not get into farming

In itself, it is a great life in making!!

Farmers and their family shall teach us how to treat a guest

Worldly pleasures may lie in cities,still we are so lostAthithi devo bhava – should not remain as a quote from the past!!

YFS-Blog-Feast for Mind, Body and Soul at Sagara (6)The same farmers are made to suffer,Be surprised to find true happiness in villages, free of cost!

Not due to lack of proper yield or rain

Blame suicidal economic development or politicians,

Addressing them only during their election campaign!!

For our farmers, we do have a word to spread

Dear brothers and sisters, organic farming is our way ahead

Glad i met a true Indian,

Whose life stands as a gentle reminder

Indeed, he is a our farmer to remember…That farming is also a pure work of passion.

-Rohan, Nithin

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