Home Mindful Living Making Time to Smell the Flowers

Making Time to Smell the Flowers

by Vidya Sury May 26, 2014 28 comments
lalbagh vidya sury

An overflowing schedule with meetings to attend, taxes to file, places to visit, people to call, doctors’ visits, repair work in the building we live in, all threatened to contribute to a solid sense of overwhelm. Sometimes when life gets a little too hectic for its own good, it is good to stand back and take stock. It is perfectly okay to slow down and take mini-breaks.

And I did.

A couple of days ago, what with the heat freaking us out and just not being in the mood to do anything, my son and I decided to watch a movie. You’d never guess which one! We finished lunch and settled down to watch – drumroll – The Ten Commandments (1956) a movie special to me on various counts. I love it for its sheer grandoise-ness. Then, it is associated with a lot of fun memories. My son was fascinated to hear that when I was in high school, I saw the movie thrice in three years. We had a movie theater right opposite our school and this movie would be aired as a morning show. The school would make a block-booking at the theater and the entire school would be shepherded to the theater to watch the movie. It is a three-hour plus show and by the time we came out of the theater into the sunlight, we’d be in a daze, feeling real strange as our minds would still be full of the movie and take its own sweet time to return to reality.

So it was such fun to relive all those moments and we thoroughly enjoyed the movie. There’s something about watching a movie when you are sixteen and then watching it with your sixteen year old son. Heh!

Not satisfied with that little break, we decided to continue the happiness and took off to the park. And not just any park. We’re lucky to have a fabulous botanical garden that’s half an hour away. 240 acres of lush green in the middle of the city open to the public with a small entrance fee – it was glorious spending the morning there. The last time we went there was when Vidur was four years old. Yes, yes, shame on me!

So anyway, the Lalbagh Botanical Gardens is a major tourist attraction. Even though the weather was super-warm, it was lovely to roam the grounds there taking in nature’s beauty.

lalbagh trees

A day at the Lalbagh

The garden was originally commissioned in 1760 by Hyder Ali, the ruler of Mysore, and later finished by his son Tipu Sultan who imported trees and plants from several countries. There are thousands of species of plants and trees that are hundreds of years old. Huge flower shows are held in January (Republic Day) and August (Independence Day) and this draws massive crowds. It houses the Department of Horticulture on the premises. Depending on the season, they also have fruit markets. Right now, there’s the Mango “mela” in progress featuring every variety of mango you can think of, direct from the growers.

lalbagh mango mela

Entry is free from 6 am to 9 am and 6 pm to 7 pm which is the time when joggers and walkers crowd the place. From 9 am to 6 pm, the entry fee is a mere Rs.10/- per adult and free for children 12 years and below. If one wants to take pictures, then a Rs.50/- fee for the camera is totally worth it. I mean, who wouldn’t want to take pictures? I certainly wanted to. I particularly love to photograph trees. There’s something so solid and serene about them!

lalbagh trees2

As we enter the Lalbagh, there is a beautiful floral clock. Reputed to be very accurate. And themed after Snow White and the seven dwarfs.

Lalbagh floral clock

Here’s Snow White’s cottage. Hey, come to think of it, I didn’t see Snow White!

lalbagh snowwhites house

This is a statue of the Maharaja of Mysore, Sri Chamarajendra Odeyar.

lalbagh statue

Even the dustbins in Lalbagh are charming!

lalbagh dustbin

The glass house in Lalbagh is the venue for the annual flower shows

lalbagh glasshouse 2

There is a rose garden, but that was closed to the public. We could walk through the Japanese garden though – which had lots of bonsai trees.

lalbagh japanese garden

The cactus garden was also closed. We couldn’t enter but I found this entrance so cute!

lalbagh cactus garden

This is a special feature of the Lalbagh. That monument is a great vantage point to see for miles around. Quoting from the Wikipedia

A geological monument for the peninsular gneiss formation is also a tourist attraction at the gardens. This monument has been designated by the Geological Survey of India on the Lal Bagh hill which is made up of 3,000 million-year-old peninsular gneissic rocks.

lalbagh gneiss monument

When we returned home tired but happy, I realized we must do this more often. To get away from overwhelm, we don’t have to overthink. Just pick a place nearby and enjoy a day, or part of a day off. Makes a big difference. Forget the “some day” attitude. Work is important, but so is relaxation. It refreshes the mind and helps tackle things more enthusiastically. So really, it is a win-win situation no matter how you look at it.

I have learned that there’s no such thing as “I don’t have the time”. When we want something badly enough, we make the time for it. It is as simple as that!

I am ready for the week. And I am not guilty that I have a couple of outings planned for this week.

What about you?

How are you renewing yourself?

lalbagh vidya sury

Linking up with one of my favorite bloggers, Unknown Mami for Sundays in My City.

Unknown Mami
Share this post ❤

You may also like


Sreeja Praveen May 26, 2014 at 12:20 pm

Ah ! That was a wonderful virtual tour 🙂 The park looks fantastic, and I’m so happy that you shared the pictures with us, Vidya 🙂 They look so serene and beautiful. Lovely 🙂 I’ve heard of the park, but the history related to Tipu is something that I didn’t know, so really happy to learn that too !
Good that you could unwind. Sometimes all that we need is that. A little time, doing nothing, or doing something without planning 🙂
Sreeja Praveen recently posted…The Realization……

Beloo Mehra May 26, 2014 at 12:56 pm

Yes, we must make time for such impromptu breaks, they really help us get away and come back refreshed. Last week, my husband and I did something like that – went away for an overnight trip to a small coastal hamlet about 120 kms away…nothing to do there, just relaxed in the beautiful old bungalow that has been turned into a hotel and spent the evening at the beach with a relaxed stroll next morning near the old fort and temple…no major vacation, nothing…but came back so refreshed. Just a little break can go a long way, I think 🙂 Glad you and Vidur could spend such a beautiful day amidst the beautiful surroundings. And yes I have some fun memories of that movie too, watching it with college friends at a friend’s home 🙂
Beloo Mehra recently posted…If Only I Could Go Back

vishalbheeroo May 26, 2014 at 2:02 pm

Heart warming post full of positive energy and vibration. We need such moments in life where we relax and go easy in life. Never watched ten commandments though heard lots bout it.
vishalbheeroo recently posted…Magical love, kissing in the monsoon

Tracie May 26, 2014 at 2:27 pm

Taking breaks, and giving your spirit a chance to relax and be refreshed, really is important. I love all your pictures from the park. It looks like an amazing place to visit. The dustbin made me smile – it is awesome that they tried to make it fit in with the surrounding nature instead of just an ugly bin that stands out. The small details make a big difference.
Tracie recently posted…Mail Is Fun, I Love Food, And Other Thankfuls

Kalpana Solsi May 26, 2014 at 4:27 pm

Last night we took an impromptu night walk and came home late to order pizzas and watched a Marathi Comedy Programme on T.V.
I visited Lalbaugh 20 years ago and the photos refreshed my memories.
Kalpana Solsi recently posted…The bed

Shalini May 26, 2014 at 4:40 pm

Beautiful write and amazing pics. I’ve been to LalBagh during my college tour. We reached late in the evening. And I don’t remember any of the sights in your picture. But I ll go again..you made me want to go again 🙂
Shalini recently posted…Chicken with Thick Gravy (Chicken Peralen)

Marie Abanga May 26, 2014 at 7:39 pm

Another great post as usual. I love the part of making time when we badly want something. Relaxation is not only something we may want, but we need it. Well, as for me, l relax three mornings a week with my 5.30am rise and workout out there n the fresh air, around the nearby park and etc. Then when l really feel L need ‘air’, I close it all and put on my music and then do whatever my spirit tells me then.
Marie Abanga recently posted…Managing my ‘Great’ emotions

Leovi May 26, 2014 at 7:41 pm

Nice garden with beautiful green ! Wonderful photos !
Leovi recently posted…Foto Abstracta 3051 ¿Existes? ¡Quiero encontrarte! – You exist? I want to find you!

Carolyn Hughes May 26, 2014 at 9:00 pm

Your posts are always so interesting and vibrant Vidya. It’s like taking my own mini-tour. Love it 🙂
Carolyn Hughes recently posted…If you’re afraid to do it, do it afraid.

Birgit May 26, 2014 at 10:40 pm

How beautiful and I agree-to take a day outing is fun. My hubby and i always pick a new place each year to drive to. I will, sometimes, go to a beautiful little town called Niagara On The Lake and just walk and go to the different stores and look at the pretty homes. I will also play tourist and go to Niagara Falls. It is really lovely to walk amongst the roses and see the falls. I had to giggle that you watched the 10 Commandments. I used to watch it every year and always laughed at Edward G Robinson talking in his New York accent:)
Birgit recently posted…For Niece #2

Vidya Sury May 27, 2014 at 9:48 pm

Birgit, we drove through Niagara on the Lake in April last year after we visited the Falls and oh, it was so beautiful. The houses, as you said, are fabulous. Next time, do let’s meet. That would hopefully be next year! Hugs! (Sent you an email. Please check and let me know!)
Vidya Sury recently posted…Making Time to Smell the Flowers

Vidya Sury May 27, 2014 at 10:25 pm

Birgit, My email to you bounced back. Could you please let me know where to reach you -email me at vidya @ vidyasury.com. I have sent you a facebook friend request and a message there. 🙂
Vidya Sury recently posted…Inspiring Stories. Against All Odds

Joy May 26, 2014 at 11:52 pm

I love the synchronicity – I have a very long ‘to-do’ list, when something makes it to that list it *really really* needs to be done (for example, grocery shopping is on that list!). However, the kids are off school. My mind said do the list, my heart said be with the kids and enjoy the afternoon. So, I did go grocery shopping (not that there wasn’t food, but our choices weren’t grand) and we will have an afternoon/evening totally off together.

I used to take lots of time off each day – ‘off’ meaning completely unplugged from the cell phone and the computer and commitments. But, I let that slide in the last few months and only since the first of May have been doing it again. I find I am much more productive and also feel very refreshed, when I take time off.

I love your photos, as always. And I love love love that your son enjoys spending time with you – isn’t it wonderful to have teens that cherish our family connection? I am so glad you took time ‘off’ and yes to smelling flowers – each and every day!
Joy recently posted…Six Word Saturday: Volume Two

Susan Maccarelli May 27, 2014 at 12:13 am

Ahhhh – what a nice mini break! I was at our cabin this weekend – no tv (thought we do have a dvd player for movies), no cell phone service and no computers. No heat either, so we made fire when it got cold at night. It is awesome to get away and check out for a while.
Susan Maccarelli recently posted…Everything I Know About Unsolicited Parenting Advice I Learned From LeBron James

Romi May 27, 2014 at 3:04 am

The park is beautiful, and I like the quote.
Sometimes we “just need to breathe, trust, let go, and see what happens.”

I am learning that ‘being’ is more important than ‘doing.’

Have a wonderful day!

Laurel Regan May 27, 2014 at 3:18 am

Gorgeous photos – sounds like a wonderful outing! I agree – it’s so important to make things like that a regular part of your life. Well done!
Laurel Regan recently posted…100 Words x 2: Stop and Think

Carol Graham May 27, 2014 at 3:54 am

What an absolutely delightful day with your son. Those moments are so precious and it is nice that you have recorded them. I know all too well that feeling of overwhelm! Last week, I pulled out the stops, boarded a plane and went to my daughter’s for a week. What a refreshing and you know what? Life went on even without me at the reins. (It only took me 3 days to catch up when I got back LOL)
Carol Graham recently posted…Wouldn’t You Love To Be A Fly On The Wall?

Jayanta Tewari May 27, 2014 at 8:12 am

I am badly in need of a break-a mini one would do. Have lost count of hours and days this week. Last Saturday, I was also planning to take my daughter, my brother and his son to Lalbagh Mango Mela but as destiny would have it, my vehicle alternator gave in and was stranded on the road in front of St. John’s. Look forward to make it up next week. A nice post with all the details and the movie experience.
Jayanta Tewari recently posted…Book Review:My Life My Rules: Stories of 18 unconventional careers

Found In Folsom May 27, 2014 at 8:33 am

You are so right, Vidya. We need to put a stop suddenly to the over whelming schedules and take a break. This weekend was a long weekend and I badly wanted to take the kids out. However, it didn’t happen. Lazy husb and lazy me 🙁 Thank you for taking me on a tour of the Lalbagh…I have been there in 2000 I believe…OMG…14 yrs? I can’t believe it.
Found In Folsom recently posted…I don’t know the Cab Number!!

My Inner Chick May 27, 2014 at 8:54 am

Vibrant, beautiful tour, Vidya.

Your energy flows to Duluth!

Love you more than coconut cream cake. xxx
My Inner Chick recently posted…You Rise Over & Over Again

Damyanti May 27, 2014 at 1:10 pm

I took the morning off today, (after clocking 500 words on the WIP, so I didn’t feel very guilty lol), and went to the East Coast Park. Watched it raining over the sea, and while stuck under a shelter, saw two elderly gentlemen, cleaners at the public toilet nearby, strip to their shorts and amble across to the sea. They stretched a few times in the rain, showing off their stringy, muscular bodies that can only come from a life of hard physical labour. Then they eased in, floated on their backs for a while, and are now cutting far out into the sea, their heads distant bobbing black dots, their arms rising strong as they kept going further–it was amazing to watch them!
Damyanti recently posted…Want to chat with a Literary Agent? #MSWL #amwriting

Proactive Indian May 27, 2014 at 3:30 pm

Walking around a garden like Lalbagh or on a beach can be really relaxing.
Another way is not watching television for a day (with little or no internet activity as well).
Proactive Indian recently posted…No ‘Shehzade’ or ‘baba log’ among BJP Ministers!

Rajlakshmi May 27, 2014 at 8:07 pm

Lalbagh does have a beautiful collection. I used to love going for a stroll during weekends. The flower shows are beautiful. Lovely captures.
Rajlakshmi recently posted…WTF Wednesdays – Fashion of Bagel Head

Susan Scott May 28, 2014 at 1:46 am

OOOOO that was so lovely Vidya thank you! Loved everything about this post from the 10 Commandments (Charlton Heston?) to the attractive dustbins, to those huge and glorious trees – but let me just say how refreshing Mother Nature is … we need to just stop and smell the roses from time to time.
Garden of Eden Blog
Susan Scott recently posted…Cultivating the Garden, Cultivating the Mind

Shilpa Garg May 28, 2014 at 9:20 am

True, we must sometimes do unplanned things too. And you had a beautiful break. Loved the picture. I liked the floral clock. Very innovative! 🙂

Michelle Liew May 28, 2014 at 7:02 pm

Beautiful gardens and photographs. The Lalbagh Gardens are enchanting!
Michelle Liew recently posted…A Sweet Reunion

Monica Deshpande May 28, 2014 at 7:32 pm

That was a lovely virtual tour of Lalbagh. I do miss it and the trips to MTR after it.
I have never seen the Snow White tableau though. Is it a recent addition?
Monica Deshpande recently posted…Crusty loaf

simple girl June 3, 2014 at 10:20 am

I had a refreshing virtual tour .. 🙂 .. I have never taken of a day like this …
simple girl recently posted…A to Z reflections post….


Leave a Comment

CommentLuv badge