maranat mana

and my first article to be published!

and i am so kicked! it was published on 17th jan, and i am still kicked.

i was traveling, with no internet access, and i couldn’t check it out ‘in print’ till the 18th! aaahhhh, never known that kind of frustration. or maybe i have, it’s just that the emotion that is the most recent stays the most vivid, the others tend to fade with time. don’t they?

i am as content as a little girl with her huge chocolate ice-cream in three imperfect rounds precariously balancing on that tiny cone.

it looks good, a fair number of people seem to have read it, some shares on facebook, many likes, many comments… and these are not from my friends, even other readers seem to have things to say; which is great! the nicest comments are by my mum, of course! 😀

so with one more skip, and another little hop… a short excerpt below…. the full article is @

A stay at Maranat Mana, a 170 year old house in the heart of Kerala’s Malabar region is a regal experience, of yesterday intertwined with today, of splendour encased in simplicity.

It all started with a last minute plan for a 10-day trip to Kerala without Kovalam, Munnar and the works featuring. We went with The Blue Yonder, a tour organizer who specialise in off-beat Kerala tours. Their recommendation was Central Kerala, and our must-do was homestays. Onam happened to land bang in the middle and no homestay wanted us lumbering around destroying their private celebrations with our ‘give-us-attention’ tourist vibe. Finally one homestay agreed and that is where we were headed, a heritage family home near Nilaumbur. We didn’t know much else about the place, and funnily none of us had ‘googled’ it.

After a futile to & fro, confused calls to the owner, asking people for directions, we turned right, went up a slope and abruptly found ourselves at a gate. It was plain, well maintained looked old enough to make us wonder about the treasures inside. We drove in and approached this house with a long, dark verandah that jutted out into a porch in the centre, Mangalore-tiles on the roof, a courtyard filled with dhoti-clad men playing cricket and lots of people sitting around the verandah – women in saris squatted on the cool floor, older men sat in wooden chairs that seemed to be from an antique shop at chor bazaar in Mumbai, children leaned on the strong, sturdy pillars that had carried the weight of this family for many generations. It felt like we were interrupting something private, and getting off the car I made my way awkwardly to the porch.

This was Maranat Mana – in the heart of Kerala’s Malabar region – a 170-year-old house managed and maintained by a family of brothers for generations. It was not just huge, it was ginormous especially given our matchbox homes in Mumbai. It didn’t seem like a house but more like a palace!

The full article is @

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