Om Shantidhama is a Vedic gurukula situated near Mekedaatu on the banks of river Kaveri(around 90km from Bengaluru). It provides educational, medical and spiritual services to all people without any discrimination on grounds of caste, creed, color, religion, language, nationality etc. No one will be denied the opportunity to acquire knowledge is the philosophy of this institution.
They wanted a corporate video for their school highlighting the various facilities of the school. This was all new territory for us, so in order to understand them better, we took a one day trip to the campus. What we saw had us completely stupefied. We came back, wrote a script for the video and set out on a two-day trip to shoot for the same.
We left early morning at around 4:00 AM. That’s all we remember, because a minute after we got into the taxi, all of us were snoring. When we reached at around 8, we were given shacks to live in. These shacks were built with bamboo shoots and tiles for a roof. It wasn’t very secure but we did feel closer to nature than ever.
We got ready and set out to get the shots for the day. The school has a sprawling campus that has the majestic river Kaveri river flowing through, gardens that are filled with herbs and flowers, quaint buildings with tiles, hills with luscious greenery and peace. The peace that could only be achieved being far away from the chaos of the city. In short, a lot to be covered in the next two days.
We went around getting beautiful shots of the scenery and of the students in the school. We got shots of the facilities, interviewed a bunch of people from the organization. It was a hard day’s work. In the evening, we had an early dinner that was cooked in the school mess. There were hammocks outside our rooms and we spent hours there relaxing and planning tomorrow’s shoot.
We woke up early morning at around 5, got ready to go the hill viewpoint from which we could see the sunrise. The climb to the viewpoint wasn’t a hard one but the pebbles and stones in the path kept us extra careful of our equipment. Once we reached the summit we kept our cameras pointed at the direction of the faint sun rays and waited. Waiting for the sun to rise from in between two mountains, whose base had a river flowing through with houses on the banks of the river was a scenery way too familiar for any Indian, but still, it was a treat to see.
Afterward, we got down and took shots of the morning prayers, yoga, and other activities. The whole day was spent getting shots of the facilities in the school, the labs, their classes, their talent show, the whole shebang. In the evening we had to take shots of the kids playing. This was the final shot of the day. The kids were playing lagori, cricket, and other games we played in our childhood. Moments later, we were playing with the kids. Who can resist a trip down nostalgia lane?
Finally, we packed our bags and got back into the taxi. In the two days, we had become so friendly with the kids that it was hard to leave them. When we were leaving our taxi was mobbed by the kids. All, we could do was tell them we’d be back. Such assurances!
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