Kids and families in search of their ancient roots fuel 97th Twin Hill trails

Bhubaneswar, December 21: Families, friends, leading professionals from advertising and IT industries and architecture across the globe and students teamed up today as the heritage enthusiasts at the 97th Monks, Caves and Kings at the Twin Hills of Khandagiri and Udayagiri. However, kids had a grand time re-discovering their roots and knowing the ancient Kalingan Empire and its pride.
The trail, that took place this morning, saw around 20 people on a journey that was more than just learning history, heritage and architecture. Curious minds found their questions answered by fellow walkers and some are coming to the Jain heritage monument after a year.
The diverse group saw kids; families and friends came together for a fun session of learning history by exchanging stories. Rajalaxmi, a participant added that as someone who liked to travel on her own, it was sometimes tricky to understand the reason behind the existence of some monuments and also how different the story of one monument is to the other. Having already been here, the walk felt like a nice change of air as the history of the caves were told and she got a better understanding of how to explore such places and not get lost.
But stories weren’t the only thing shared. Trivia was passed around, with kids showing interest. Ayan Das a Grade 4 student from Singapore was accompanied by his family as his parents, both former students of Xavier Institute of Management, Bhubaneswar, are now settled in the South East Asian business hub.
Ayan’s sister Kashish in Grade 8, father Nihar Das and mother Trisha Varma had a good time with family members Manoranjan Das, IT professional from New Jersey (USA) and his daughter Misha, a Grade 6 student.
While Nihar Das is currently founder of WPP Blackops, WPP’s borderless agency, the company WPP is the largest advertising group globally. His wife, a former senior employee at P&G is now founder of Uncovery Marketing Consulting firm in Singapore.
While Ayan’s family will start their tour to Koraput today and spend some time there exploring the beautiful countryside and valleys there, later his father will join the annual get-together function of his friends at his alma-matter MKC High School, Baripada, after the trip, where he spent his early days.
This edition of the Walks saw the kids taking over with their genuine interest in understanding and learning history and heritage and left everyone with the lesson that no one is too young or too old to learn new things. It was also a general consensus among the kids that storytelling like this was the best way to teach history.
For Roshini, a conservation architect from Bangalore, who had been here before and seen the city grow during its Smart City project, it was a moment of admiration for the city which has grown so much since she was last here.
Smriti Baranwal, a student of Regional Institute of Education, had brought along her uncle, aunt and their two kids, who were happy to be a part of the trails. Having been part of the walks earlier, Smriti always brings along family and friends. On earlier occasions many students of RIE had also joined the Monks, Caves and Kings.
It is through these kids, families, people bringing their close ones along and a common love for history and heritage that trails like the Twin Hill Trail is still as important and popular than ever.

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