It is difficult to tell the students at SUMPOORNA about some trekking experiences without being caught! So when inadvertently I mentioned SAVANDURGA there was virtually a clamour `WHEN ARE YOU TAKING US THERE'?
At 56, I am not what I was at 35 - we used to wander all over the hillocks and valleys of places around Bangalore. If I name them I will be in trouble again - so let us just stick to Savandurga. I must be selective and careful in making programmes - but how can I deny my students the same `joys' that I provided children two decades ago. So be it! The lure of the Kari Betta and Bili Betta will haunt these children and inspire in them a sense of joy that has endured in me even after having climbed it more than hundred times. I have climbed it with my wife and younger son - I have climbed it with more than fifty students at a time.
The discipline this hill demands - children climb on it the way a small baby tries to climb on the chest of its mother - I have to use this analogy because I have a grandson of five months who already climbs on to my chest probably practicing for its climb on Savandurga.
I have climbed Savandurga as a father - now I am going to climb it as a grandfather - WILL I CLIMB IT as a great grand father? As I write this piece - tears of joyful
memories flow down my cheeks - where are they - all those thousands of children with whom I climbed these hills. DO THEY STILL CLIMB OTHER HILLS - I don't know; yet I have a feeling that whenever they see a hill, they would remember me as the person who helped them climb their FIRST HILL at Savandurga.