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A journey to Sandakphu

On 30/04/2015

… A walk through nature’s heart ! with Manoj Kumar Sethy, Rajesh Das, Sudeepa Sarkar, Tanmay Sahoo, Poonom Sarker , D Naskar
Trekking is an arduous journey of subjecting one’s body mind and soul to the burdensome feeling of backbreaking just to quench the insatiable thirst of caparisons adventure. Its no chicken hearts job to trek through the dense undergrowth , lush foliage, rocky cliffs streaked with moss, dappled leaves soaked with moisture decorating the paths thereby reducing the friction between shoe soles, the twisted tree roots … at sub zero temperature that leaves our muscles shiver and teeth chatter ………. yet the experience is worth the pain and my thoughts provoked by the beauty of nature.
As I start my journey though the foothills of the Sandakphu – Singalila mountain range, I was captured with the mesmerizing voluminous floral density glittering with every pinch of sunlight, the beautiful habitats of the people made of wood and the tinned roof tops reflecting the sun rays, giving a silver shining effect at certain points throughout the mountain. My chocked adenoids still faintly smell the air rich in fragrance of the leaves and loam and dampness. Even though rains have passed through few hours ago, the soil remains wet, slowly releasing its heady fog. The morning mist kissing the leaves and the brute waves giving a clabbering effect to every living part exposed to. I capped my glass and glanced up … the unbroken diversified green arena stared back at me giving no clue of the path as to where I should head to and then as I start to move up through the vine choked trunks on the thin wetty line covered with a web of sappling leaves, the lush wet vegetation trapped my movement which I overcame with the bamboo bushes.
The walkway inclined at an angle that left my thighs & leg muscles ferment ethyl alcohol in my body which was neutralized by an ” avil” tablet post dinner.
The hauntingly silent forest was the habitat of dissolute souls wondering vacuously across where the bird chirps echoed from nowhere, the melodious river stream whispering through the creeks, rocks, the insects buzzing & the leaves sliding as I move through them.
As the day came to an end dusk stained the glistening surrounding with shadow and gloom amid the drizzly mists in which the scurry of the jungle beings began to ebb.
The first view of the habitat was of a wooden hut at a secluded peaceful place with beautiful white curtains decorating the windows and doors which provided faint visibility of inside the room. The mattress gave a wet feeling to the very first kiss of my back & then I realised its the congealing effect of the climate. The room was cozy with three beds (2 parallel and 1perpendicular) having 3 different colors of bed sheets and blanket combinations red, brown and pink. I choose the red one
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& my Rommie choose pink out of an obsession with Ms Leone. The perpendicular bed was below a slanting roof which provided pathway for the dwellers of the upstairs. The views through the window was of the green capped mountains, pine trees adding to the lustrous natural beauty.
Firewood is the fuel used to cook delicious foods, giving a faint odor of burnt carbon that improves the appetite.
There was a knock at the door & with every knock my expectation was of feeding my yearning stomach which processed some maggi fed in the morning throughout the day to aptly synthesize energy for climbing the rocks. However the hot tea was spell bound and quaffing it with relishing snacky sound in the moon light at the edge of a cliff, was just a rare opportunity…….. aaahhhh finally a name echoed in my ears through the surroundings breaking the silence of night- the silent plantations, the calm clear sky, the silent shimmering starts, the smiling moon. It was my name announced for missing the most eventful event of the day the DINNER, while I rushed through the mist covering pine forests, slippery moss stained leaves guided by my radium illumination.
I encountered a lady seeing whom I had premonitions, at the wash basin. I was moving for the dinner and she for an action-packed night with her husband. I carefully managed to steal a look at her way to her room & a smile clicked my face.
I placed myself at the corner of the dining table facing outside to relish the natures landscape and the chilled clouds moving through my face. A porcelain plate with four freshly made chapattis was served, the vapours radiated the surrounding air near my collapsing fingers making it warm and I bent down to feel the aroma of the hot air. The chappatis were toasty and delicious having been cooked on a super-hot iron tawa. The chappatis were accompanied by ALU curry what we generally call “allu dum”.
As nightfall descended, the temperature began to freeze our breaths and every exhalation of air would seem to provide an effect of smoking. There is no electricity, only candles and torch bearing lamps will guide you asleep.
………. to be continued

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