Sunday, March 31, 2013

At The Beach Today

It is a rainy day today. But it wasn't so in the morning. So I went to the beach. The surfers, the joggers, the artists in the park, the tourists, the locals were all there. Starbucks had a ridiculously long queue. So I strolled lazily without that "tall" hot chocolate I was planning on getting. I don't like the beach much. I prefer the mountains, the coolness of high elevations. It makes me feel on top of the world, literally and figuratively. My last trip to the mountains was incredible. I miss the company, the companionship, the exhilaration, none of which I experienced today morning, at the beech. Maybe because I do not enjoy the beach much and my "company" was not there. I know, I am repeating myself. Anyways, since I was at the beach and since I carry my Instagram installed "smart" phone everywhere I go, here are some snapshots of my morning trip to the beach.

I don't like the beach much but still.....lovely huh?

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Hand In Hand

                                                                  Source: via Frania on Pinterest

Inspired by this image..

A guy and a gal or you and me, hand in hand, here is what I see

Two destiny's match, meandering through life, setting goals and succeeding.

Two travelers, wandering the world, together, backpack and all in wanderlust pursuits.

Two kindred spirits, being together, sipping hot chocolate in a cafe, on that cobbled street by the river watching the world go by.

Two hippie souls, in hippie drapes and hippie attitude seeking freedom, feeling liberated.

Two lovers, building a home on that hilltop, living and loving just the way the hearts desired.

 Two dreamers, dreaming without limits, forging ahead with determination till life's end.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Love, Smile, Tear, Flutter

Random Things that made me- think of "love", brought a smile, shed a tear and made my heart flutter. 

This image by Julia Brokaw that I found here

This memory of being at the banks of the Ganga

This song by Counting Crows

This dream of travels with soulmate

These lines from this book

Sunday, March 03, 2013

The Trip

Back after an exceptionally magical trip. Magical because the experience was  beyond what my creatively limited  mind could ever dream up. And it was exceptional because of whom I traveled with, the places we went, how we went and all that we did.

I want to write this post as a travelogue but afraid it may come across as impersonal and detached. I want to write this post as an enriching, earth shattering personal experience but afraid it may come across as too personal, emotional and perhaps too mushy and sentimental. So how should I proceed? Oh well, indecisiveness prevails...but here goes and hopefully the narration lies somewhere between impersonal and personal. Not too detached and yet not too personal where either case, one reading, may not be able to relate.

We went to Uttarakhand (somehow Uttaranchal sounds more beautiful than Uttarakhand.Why did they ever change the name?) and explored Dehradun and Mussorie which were rather disappointing and Rishikesh which sort of made up for the earlier  disappointments. Rishikesh was decided over Haridwar and floating a flower platter in the Ganga and witnessing the Ganga aarti together  was an experience that will remain beautiful, overwhelming, meaningful and extraordinary to us. Later people told us of places where we may have enjoyed more but at the time, especially after our profound experience at Rishikesh, we felt  it had to be something beyond to maintain the state of mind we were in.  That is when, on a whim, we decided to travel to Himachal, all the way to Dharamshala or to the land of the "Buddhas" as I would like to call it.Thank god for off season travel, acquiring  last minute bus tickets to Dharamshala and return tickets to Delhi, to catch our train back home was rather easy.

After a 12 hour surprisingly comfortable journey, disregarding the bone freezing cold( it was early Feb but being from the warm, tropical South the night temperature was sufficient to feel ourselves freezing) we reached Dharamshala early dawn, when the town was still sleepy and dark, except for those small motels guarded by sleepy recptionist/watchman expecting that odd tourist showing up at odd hours. 

Since our trip to Dharamshala town was completely unplanned and since we had not done any reading on the place, we were not sure what to explore. And since time was limited, after checking into a small lodge, a quick cleaning up, a nap and a breakfast later we set off to McLeod Ganj. With frequent buses from Dhramashala , reaching MG was pretty fast and easy and we felt instantly at home in the small hippie, buddhist town. Again thankgod for off season travel, we found rooms at  cheap rates. After checking in we did the usual  touristy thing as well as non-touristy things and after two days of careless wanderings, bid farewell to the town with an excellent  lunch of fried momos, tandoori chicken and chilled beer at a reasonably fancy place. From a purely tourist perspective, visiting naddi for a proximal view of the snow capped mountains and the Dalai Lama temple was indeed  lovely and definitely recommended.

Our return bus ride to Delhi was not the most comfortable which is putting it rather mildly, and neither was our return train ride back home as magical as our onward journey( blame it on a rather well packed noisy compartment) but none of the experience-good or bad would have meant much without the company I was in. It was all of 10 days that felt like a lifetime well spent, in a far far magical land, blissed out and incandescently happy! *touchwood*

Sharing some pictures hoping it inspires someone to pack that bag and travel and as a concerned citizen perhaps boost India's tourism revenue.

Urban Sprawl- Mussorie

The Ganga At Dusk

Floating Flower Platter

Venerating the Ganga

The Sadhu At Ganga Ghat

Snow Capped Mountains-Dharamshala
The Buddha-McLeod Ganj

McLeod Ganj-Streets
McLeod Ganj

The "Royal" Machine At McLeod Ganj