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Oct 9

Written by: Jennifer Kumar, LMSW, Cultural Adjustment Coach/Mentor
Friday, October 09, 2009

Greetings, Friends:

Hope all have had an enjoyable month. The last month was very eventful for us. We had taken a cross country road trip, on which our dough Ganesh came and we had a nice time dunking him in the Colorado River. It was even nicer that He could come with us all that way and see the Great USA with us- but I am sure his mouse would take him much further than our car!

The highlights of Alaivani this month were posts on Navarathri by Padmini and Vidhyarmbham by Saju. Take a peek into these stories to learn some history, myths and facts about these celebrations from a South Indian perspective.

Though Alaivani was full of posts this month, the real highlight is the videologue of our cross country trip. Though it's yet to be completed, I have 21 home-videos for you to enjoy!

Do take your time and browse what's interesting to you. Enjoy and we'll continue to meet on Alaivani.


Jennifer Jayanthi Kumar


Blog Bling October 2009 Diwali is October 17, 2009 Features a Diwali Cadbury's Milk ad that stars our friend, Priya! Take a peek. Her dreams are coming true!

India and American holidays October 2009 Calendar Inspirational Ganapathi Idols by Roopashri and her FriendsPhoto scrapbook and slideshow of some beautifully hand-created Ganeshidols for the event of Ganesh Chathurthi. Click in to be equallyinspired on how to celebrate a handmade homemade Ganesh Chathurthi.

Navaratri: Then and Now Padmini has contributed some nice thoughts on Navarathri celebrations through time from the perspective of a South Indian Tamil.

Through the eyes of Krishna Kumar From sea to shining sea. Well, almost. Taking a 5,300 mile photo safari across America through eleven states offers opportunities for my husband's talents to shine. Open this post to see select photo posted so far and click in to his site to see even more!

Video Diary - 2009 Ganesh Chathurthi Celebrations span 2,300 Miles  No procession of thousands, like in Mumbai, walked or drove across US to immerse Ganesh into the Colorado River, but it would have been a historic event if it did happen. Click in to read, see photos and videos of our memorable experience.

Vidhyarmbam: Conclusion of Navarathri in Kerala Saju contributed a well- documented detail of the celebration of learning for youngsters in Kerala, India.

Virtual Golu - Videos of Dolls Display for NavarathriInspirational Golu displays posted on YouTube found their way to my blog! Take a look inside and experience the amazing doll displays for yourself.

Alaivani YouTube - Videos

Our Cross Country Videologue. These are presented in the order of our trip.


Night Driving in Cleveland 
We did not listen to Hindi or Indian filmi songs enough on this trip.....

Nighttime ambiance in an Ohio Rest Area
Stopping at rest areas in the dead of night is a good time to listen to the surround sounds of nature- and of the passing by vehicles!

Welcome to Indiana
Having fun at the state border getting big trucks to honk hello to us!


Video Postcard - Illinois Welcome Center


All Aboard @ the Five-thirty Davenport
Scenery and sounds of a passing by train in Davenport, Iowa near to the Mississippi River.

Driving in Des Moines


Julesburg Rest Area, I-76, Colorado, USA
A midnight stop at the northeastern border of the 'Colorful' state bought us to this Western themed rest area. Hope you like the music.....

Amazing Colorado Squirrel
We took a brief detour into Denver and visited Cheesman park. It's a nice park on the top of a hill, where one can see many scenic vistas of the  city. The only 'cheese' I had with Cheesman is no public restrooms-only some really dirty port-a-potties.

Rocky mountain high - Panorama Point at Golden Gate Park, Colorado

Gap Road Drive at Golden Gate State Park
Down tree-lined roads from the top to bottom of scenic vistas. Simply breathtaking.

Pot O' Gold in Colorado
Maybe this was our "Colorful Colorado"! A nice rainbow at a rest stop was an unexpected surprise.

Colorado 70 W
There was a small tunnel on this section of 70 W also.

Long Tunnel on I-70W
Listening for "Forrest Gump" favorites while enjoying a Colorado scenic drive in early September.


Delicate Arch 360
We made it to the top of Delicate Arch, though we missed the check out time at the hotel to do so, and the world did not come to an end! Glad we were late to miss this timeless moment! If you go to Arches National Park, you must do this hike! If you wonder how much time is required to really enjoy the Delicate Arch hike, I would say a good 4-6 hours. It took us about 1 hour and 15 minutes to hike up and about the same back down at a moderate pace with few stops. However, because of heat, it can be difficult. Early morning at sunrise is the best time to start, spend a few hours relaxing or walking around this area (which is a lot bigger than it looks), then go back down around lunch time. Take plenty of water and snacks. There is no bathroom at the top, either! :)

Black Dragon
Route70 between exit for Capitol Reef and Bryce is a must see. Rest areas,known as view areas are each with a themed scenery and a unique name. I missed the board for Black Dragon. Wonder how it got it's name.

70W up to Bryce Exit
Listening to the uplifting, yet relaxing piano melodies of George Winston driving on Route 70 W in Utah compliments this desert landscape perfectly. One of my favorite drives of all time is this!

Red Canyon Route 89 South
Wonderful red rock formations called hills, mountains, boulders, and tunnels! A true scenic drive for anyone and everyone!

Best Western Bryce

Sunset at Zion Ponderosa
Experience the sun setting behind the Utah hills to the relaxing music of flutes and wind instruments.


Entering Colorado on 70E
"Colorful Colorado" is the motto, but maybe we need to come back for fall colors?

Tunnel West Side National Monument Scenic Drive in Colorado
First of two tunnels we drove through on this mountain vista drive.

Tunnel Drive (East Side National Monument)


Sounds of Nature at Mushroom State Park, Kansas
This is a park off the beaten track, even for a native of Kansas, but a New Yorker? It is quite an interesting and cute place, there are few rock formations that look like mushrooms, hence the namesake.

Videos of everyday and spiritual life celebrations

Ganesh Sharanam Thru the Years Final Images of handmade Ganesh and Visarjans since 2004 in various locations in New York, Pennsylvania and Colorado!

Ganesh Visarjan in Colorado River, Grand Junction, Colorado Slideshow music video of our trip to dunk Ganesh in the Colorado River for Ganesh Chathurthi.

Golu Story - From Collections of Stands to Collection of Dolls 2009

Happy Ganesh Chathurthi A 360 view of our dough-boy, Mr. Ganesh.

How to Greet "Happy Onam" in Malayalam

Tom and Jerry of Pittsford, NY Our local cat- Val- is having fun with a mouse. I was having fun with the both of them!

Summer trip to the Wilds of Pennsylvania - a nice train ride through mountains and by lakes, camping and a visit to the Grand Canyon on Pennsylvania.

Our India Trip 2009

Short Interview with a Sari Weaver in Kanchipuram, India

Temple Procession, Kanchipuram, India

Thank you.



Copyright ©2009 Jennifer Jayanthi Kumar


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