As we drove towards Dhanushkodi beach, our drive suddenly stopped the car and asked if we wanted to see the Floating stones.. Puzzled, i looked at him and asked "what floating stones?"
Instantly he replied "madam, the ones that were used in building the bridge Ramasethu [Adam's bridge] by Rama and the monkeys. There is a Panchamuka Hanuman Temple less than 2 kms from here. I can take you there if you wish".
Dint need any more motivation, nodded my head and off we went to the Hanuman temple. It is a small temple, with the image of Hanuman etched on the wall in red vermillon. The Hanuman has five faces and looks like he is standing leaning on the wall. There were a few pillars and at the base of one i spotted two large stones, on another pillar was the map of how India was back in the days and the path that Rama had taken when building the bridge.
As you walk around the main sanctum, there is a small pit of sorts filled with water, and covered with mesh. Inside this tank, lo behold, i noticed there were a few floating stones. The priest came around and told me these were among the ones used by Rama when building the bridge and that the stones really did float. " You cant put your finger in and push them down, but they will surface within minutes, go ahead try it" he said. And much to my amazement, that is exactly what happened.
Legend has it that Rama and his army of monkeys decided to build the bridge under the guidance of Hanuman (Monkey-God) and the engineering supervision of Nala. They wrote "Rama" on the stones and used them to build the bridge over the ocean. Apparently, even today, in Devipatnam, or Navapashanam, also by the sea, there are nine stones visible at low tide. It is believed that they were set up by Sri Rama to represent the nine planets, the Navagrahas.
The priest recommended i visit the two other temples popular around here- Sugreeva Theertham and Lakshmana Theertham...As i walked out of the Hanuman temple, i wondered if all that i had read and heard in Ramayana was real, and maybe there were more such tales hidden within the walls around us.