We attended the wedding reception in the evening, conveyed our heartiest wishes to the newly wedded and feasted some more on the choicest culinary creations. On our last day in this eclectic city, we paid an early morning visit to the much revered Dakshineshwar Kali Temple. Both of us being non-religious, it was more of a sightseeing activity than anything else. Devotees thronged to the temple in large numbers to make offerings to Goddess Kali and take a dip in the holy waters of the Ganga. Ardent religiosity seething with vermilion was the concluding note to our Kolkata tale. There is a lot more to see including the Indian museum which is the largest and oldest museum in the country, Mother House, St. Paul's cathedral and Nicco Park. It seemed as if we had just scratched the surface of a fathomless sea of secrets. I hope to go back some day and delve a little more into the profoundness that is Kolkata. I wish to listen to an ardent fan passionately untangle the many threads behind Tagore's poetry artfully scrawled on the subway walls. I long to relive the heart wringing melody echoing on the distant horizon of the Hooghly. And maybe then, I'll find true joy in the deepest core of this singular city of idiosyncrasies.
The fifth and the last day in Kolkata was the busiest since I was finally feeling better and had a long list of places pending on my list. I started the day with a visit to Dakshineshwar Temple along with a friend. Since Metros start only by 10 AM on Sundays, we took a bus till Dunlop and took an auto from there to the temple. On our way, we stopped at my friend’s family math ‘Mahamilan Math‘ which was extremely peaceful and tranquil and I bought some really mesmerizing incense sticks from there. I got Goosebumps when I finally had ‘Darshan’ of the ‘Ma Kali Idol’. I looked at Ma Kali and all I could hope for was to imbibe courage and strength in my being, as every ounce of her presence spoke of those two qualities. I felt really empowered and after sitting at the ghat for a while, I meditated in the hall inside the temple premises. After satiating my desire to meditate in Dakshineshwar Temple, we headed to Kalighat Temple which was highly overcrowded because of it being a Sunday! However, a glimpse of Ma Kali made me forget about the struggle to reach within her aura! As we were heading towards ‘Krishna Sweets’ on Ashutosh Mukherjee Road, we witnessed the vintage car rally! I felt super lucky and stopped by the signal to catch a glimpse of the awesome vintage cars! After the rally, we ate ‘Kachori & Aloo Sabzi’ and ‘Baked Sandesh’ and headed towards St. Paul’s Church. The church was an entirely unique gothic church in Kolkata! After the church, we went to South Park Street Cemetery. The cemetery sent chills down my spine as it was absolutely one of its kind and incited numerous mixed emotions of awe and sadness. We then went to ‘Govinda’s’ (ISKCON Temple’s restaurant) for lunch. The sattvik food there was very delicious (although I could not each much due to my poor health). We went for a quick stroll post lunch to Victoria’s Square Park opposite ISKCON temple. To our surprise, we saw monkeys, ducks, and rabbits! We sat down for a while and looked back at the entire trip and summarized our experiences briefly. After that, we went inside the ISKCON temple and after the evening ‘Aarti’ I went back to my PG, packed my bag, and left for the station.As I left the city with mixed emotions and experiences, I just had one word to bid adieu to the city of contrast, ‘Aashchi’ (I’ll be back).For more Pictures, visit my blog: https://nivedita1220.wordpress.com/2017/02/04/kolkata-the-sweet-city-of-contrasts/