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Saturday, December 3, 2016

A selfie with cow

"The cow is not coming in the screen." A school girl said who was holding a selfie stick to click a selfie with a cow. She came there with her batch-mates on an educational school trip. She moved the stick a bit and said, "Oh no! Now cow can be seen but not me."

A really found the idea to have a selfie with cow ridiculous! :D

Friday, December 2, 2016

Snow leopard

“What are you planning to do after this course is finished?” A batch-mate asked me.
“I am thinking of going on trekking expeditions and visiting nearby national parks.” I said.“You are born and brought up in this area. Do you know in general which animals can be spotted during expeditions?”
“Black bear, brown bear, musk deer, blue sheep and Himalayan tahr. Rarely one sees snow leopard.”
“That sounds interesting!”
“They said, “If you ever see snow leopard then run faster than the rest of the group!””

Thursday, December 1, 2016

When main gate was locked....

I was travelling from Gangorti to Netala in a shared taxi. I was about to reach Netala in 15 minutes. They closed the door of ashram at 5:30 p.m. My watch was showing 5:09 p.m. I was relaxed, as I would reach there on time, as the taxi was moving with a decent speed on hills.

The taxi slowed down, I could see buffalo herd in front of it. The herd was quite big. The taxi driver blew horn but the buffaloes kept moving with their pace without giving way to the taxi. The taxi owner blew horn continuously, moved his head out of the taxi window and shouted on his high pitch to buffalo owner to goad the buffaloes to one side of road and to make way for the vehicle. Very slowly, the owner goaded them that consumed about 7- 10 minutes of my precious time. The vehicle moved ahead and took its speed. I was calculating the time that I might not be able to reach early but would manage sharply at 5:30 p.m.

The taxi slowed down again and this time an ocean of sheep was ahead of us. The herd owner goaded the animals but they were jumping here and there, making almost impossible for the vehicle to move. Taking all the precautions, the taxt driver moved the vehicle very slowly without hurting innocent little creatures. This also consumed another 10 golden minutes of my life.

The taxi halted on the spot where I had to get down. The taxi owner climbed the roof of taxi to untie the rope and handed the heavy and bulky baggage to me. I was carrying a jacket in my hand and a polythene bag containing apples in another. All of a sudden, it started raining heavily. I took out the umbrella from my bag and opened it. I gave the money to taxi owner and ran downhill towards the ashram, carrying all the things in my hand and bag on my back. The polythene bag was not of good quality, could not hold the weight of apples, tore apart in the mid of road, apples scattered all over the way and a few rolled down far away. A villager saw this, came forward to help me. He gathered all the apples, gave them to me and I stuffed them in my bag which was already full. I walked rather almost ran towards the main gate of ashram. Alas! The gate was locked. What should I do now? I could easily jump that small gate but with the bulky luggage I found it difficult. I could not see anyone nearby whom I could request to open it. If I didn’t get in the ashram where I would spend the night, was the biggest question that was haunting my mind. There were many cheap hotels in Netala but which one was good and safe; I didn’t have an iota of knowledge about that. It was raining and I was sweating!

My presence of mind guided me that there was one more gate to enter the ashram, might be that was open or I could request someone there. I ran hurriedly towards that door, my jacket fell from my hand. I quickly picked it up and ran again. I reached in the front of that back gate. I felt relieved there was no lock on it. I moved the latch of the gate silently, taking every caution not to make noise. A student was sitting on the stairs saw me, he shouted and asked me to come from the main gate. Without wasting a second I was in the ashram premises, I ignored him, walked a couple of steps, threw my baggage, jacket and shoes near the dustbin in the veranda of ashram and ran towards the Director’s office to get myself registered for the course.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Eco-friendly pots in Uttarkashi

One thing that attracted me the most in Uttarkashi was that almost every home had eco-friendly pots in which they have planted tulsi, aloe vera, mint or seasonal flowers.
Some had painted them and some haven't. Clay pots were very rarely seen there.
Mostly people grow plants in empty tins and canes of ghee, mustard oil or other food stuffs.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Restaurants with the same name

My friends and I were travelling together to a hill station. I mailed the programme details like starting time; pick up locations, lunch on the midway in a small town and taxi charges of shared taxi to my friends who were accompanying me in this trip. I chose to have lunch at ‘Lucky Restaurant’. By the time we reached the decided town, we were extremely hungry. The lanes of the town were narrow so we asked the driver to park the taxi in parking area. We got down from the taxi and started walking on the lane in search of the decided restaurant. Hardly 15 meters we had walked then I saw the signboard showing ‘Lucky Restaurant’. We all went in and ordered the food. We chatted until the meal came, had good feast, gave a decent tip and came out of the restaurant.

After a heavy and nice meal, we all decided to walk for some time before starting again for the destination. We moved near about fifty meters then the road took a curved turn. Now I saw another restaurant on which ‘Lucky Restaurant’ was written. According to Google maps, we have to walk for about 60 – 65 meters to reach that restaurant from the parking area. On seeing the earlier board of ‘Lucky Restaurant’ in which we dine, I thought might be Google maps did not show the right distance. Moreover, the strong hunger forbidden me to search further. I thought it might got unnoticed by the group as we were walking with a fast pace. However, I was wrong. One of the person who has strong observation power noticed it and said, “Oh, one more Lucky Restaurant!”

I admitted, “Actually we entered a wrong restaurant!"
He chuckled. He burst into a laugh. While laughing, he gently touched his left hand on my right shoulder then suddenly withdrew his hand, thinking, "She is ‘Touch-Me-Not’ type person!"

Monday, November 28, 2016

Waterfalls in Uttarkashi

"How beautiful waterfall looks!" When I noticed the first waterfall while travelling in car from Rishikesh to Uttarkashi. I have never seen a waterfall before as I was from a semi-arid zone and hadn't travel much. In Uttarakhand during the end of July, it was rainy season. It was raining heavily and rivers were flowing with their full flow. There were waterfalls of all sizes, small n big, fast n slow and twisted in the hills n falling straight from the hills on the ground. Every waterfall was a unique of its own. Sometimes even while travelling waterfall water suddenly splattered on the roof of the car making a thud sound.

Among so many natural waterfalls these man-made waterfalls along the road side attracted me the most! They were not beautiful but hilarious.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

A walk with a friend!

During my stay in Netala, I didn't talk much with my batchmates. I tried my best to follow the rules of ashram like speak less and read more, chat less and practice more. I wasn't much curious to know about others and wasn't there to make contacts. I wished to devote my time to my prayers, meditation, spiritual reading and introspection. I wanted to devote each and every second of my time for progress on the spiritual path.

There, I hardly talk with others and preferred to maintain silence. Mostly out of formality, I opened my mouth to utter monosyllables or sometimes sentences. Contrary to that back at home, I was talkative; generally enjoyed talking with persons of all age groups, all genres, all cultures and all socio-economic status. I loved to talk about various topics but I hesitated to talk about my emotions with others. A walk with that friend in the hills around ashram made me so comfortable with her that I shared my inner most emotions with her, may be because we are of same age or shared the same interest or in childhood days lived in a small city and then moved to a metropolitan for professional growth.

We went to a nearby village situated on a hill and from there on the narrow lane into the forest to Bharoon ka mandir (Temple of Lord Bharoon) which was though closed at that time.
We watched the villagers working, cows wandering in hills with bells in their necks, small houses here and there with their tempting kitchen gardens full of organic vegetables like pumpkin, bottle gourd, ridge gourd, beans, brinjal, lady finger, tomato.

The most interesting thing I liked was these toothbrush holders. :) During the walk, my mobile battery said 'Goodbye' so I asked her to click these photos for me. A short but memorable trip! :)