DESTINATION ADDICTION OR JUST ANOTHER LOCAL CONNECTION?
The cold air blew right across me chilling me to my bones while I stand in awe staring into the distance at the mighty mountains of the Himalayan range.
A trip that I had spent the last couple of months waiting for its commencement.
Himachal Pradesh a tiny state in India nestled in the very heart of the Himalayas is not only a mere trekking destination but also known as the “land of gods”
Our trek begins with songs of joy and hope, marching our way under the sun in an ant line. Hello! Exclaims the guide “ My name Sheru” something that he must have learned newly, while we are resting alongside a waterfall sipping from the freshly harvested crystal clear water. I responded in an excited yet tired voice “ Badiya jagah hai bhaiji” to which I meant, What an astonishing place!
He says, ‘welcome home my friend’.
And my journey begins.
As we move forward to our first base camp, I feel the warmth from the campfire and bathe in the light shed upon us by a sky full of stars. A warm welcome one can say.
The following day takes us through twists and turns under a weeping sky which induced pain and turmoil upon the ground beneath us only to know the narrow and slippery trail was the only way to bypass death valley which was a 200-foot fall right into the Parvati river. This in turn scared and shoed away a mother and her daughter back to base camp. For now, I had seen both the sides, the good and the bad.
The night drowned in darkness and so did we follow.
It is day 3 and we depart before the first rays of sunlight only to reach the summit and witness the peaks so bright laden with snow now bringing to my attention why was it possibly called “the land of the gods” who were omnipresent. Sliding down its peaks we felt a love that of which was brought down to us by mother herself this left me with a feeling of being loved and in turn loving everything around.
By this time, I had already virtually settled in the mountains just like how its absolute mesmerising grace had settled in my head.
It all comes abruptly to an end one that started slow and ended quickly, I depart home like the lost soul that I was until one fine day I hear my phone ring. Hello “my name Sheru” and the fire rekindles to give me warmth, He says to me “ how about you come to my place and we start a Cafe?” Thus shedding light like those of a thousand stars followed by bringing in turmoil and destruction to make apt choices with my career goals and family expectations.
I make my decision and I head back the following year on successful completion of my graduation. I start a small Cafe along with my friend Sheru thus leaving me with a feeling of being loved and loving all those around.
With all this said, I conclude saying initially it must have been a destination addiction which followed by making just another local connection.
One that will be treasured forever!