Indira S. Somani, journalist, PhD

Mysore 2011-vs-Mysore 1978

One of the places that I have remembered the most from a childhood visit to India was Brindavan Gardens. We visited India for five weeks during Christmas break (Dec. 1977 to  Jan. 1978), and at the end of the trip we came to Bangalore, Mysore and Brindavan Gardens.  I have been dying to return to the gardens, since I last saw it because I remember it as a mystical place with waterfalls.  But when I reached my hotel last weekend, the hotel desk said to “hold on to my memories from 1978.”  She did not encourage me to visit the gardens as she felt it was not maintained the way it used to be.  I refused to listen.  I went and saw the gardens that day.  It was fun walking around, but it didn’t feel nostalgic.  Maybe because, by now I have seen so many gardens just like it in other parts of the world.  My childhood memory of the gardens was at night with all the waterfalls lit up.  But now, both the gardens and Mysore Palace are lit up at the same time, so unfortunately if you’re only in Mysore for one night, you can only see one or the other. I had to choose between keeping my childhood memory or replacing it with a new memory.   I chose to keep my childhood memory of Brindavan Gardens as I do not even remember Mysore Palace at all from my visit in 1978.  For me, the palace was worth seeing again, especially lit up at night.  

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