It was a place to remember and a place where some prejudices about Sanskrit, our ancient language, were discarded. Spent a day at the grand Sanskrit Book Fair cum conference held in Bangalore. With 1300 volunteers, 154 stalls with 128 publishers and 4 crores worth of sales (took it form the same website), the fair was a grand success. See the enthusiasm and energy for yourself.
I was also surprised by the sheer amount of people who spoke fluent Sanskrit (Read up the Wikipedia entry on it). Enthusiastic city dwellers, villagers, students, teachers, scholars and passionate people were just ambling along the area suffused with sunlight, chattering with people in sanskrit, picking up books, hugging each other like long lost friends and generally having a ball walking in the midst of the ancient language. The book exhibition was huge with publishers and titles from across the country on epics (which is why I was there). They also had a village built into the exhibition area (other than the all pervasive food stall of course) which had a post office, a school, a repair shop, a vegetable seller, the works.
Kudos to the NGOs and the government that made it happen. I aim to learn the language and practice it at the fair next year (or is that too hopeful?).