It was Friday, the13th. I was waiting at Nathan's cafe for my fellow trekkers. Soon, the participants started to trickle in. But I was still a bit tensed. Will I make it? Is it safe? were some of the questions that kept echoing in my mind. But as soon as Shankar'Ji' joined us, my mood was upbeat. After some intros, we left Chennai. The travel was really enjoyable thanks to some jokes by Shankar"ji" and Akash bro. We had a brief halt en route and we had some snacks. Again we started travelling and on the way I came across some highly tongue twisting village names(sorry, I don't remember any of them ).
Soon, we reached our base camp. It was really a serene and tranquil place and the stars above were complimenting it. Shankar'Ji', Selva anna and I went in search of firewood but that soon turned into a futile attempt. We decided to collect anything and everything that was possible so that we don't return empty handed. We then had our dinner, a really tasty Paneer Butter Masala, chapatis and soup. I had always dreamt of sleeping under crystal clear skies in Chennai(and that is a Mission Impossible where even Tom Cruise will fail).
The next day, I woke up at 5am but kept lying on my bed(read as "Sleeping mat") knowing that it was going to be a tiring day. But soon everyone was awake and Chella anna distributed "Veppam kuchis" to brush our teeth. Then Chella anna, Akash bro, Shankar'ji' and I went on a mini trek(guess for what) and I found it really scary to sit inside the bushes. Then we climbed an old tree near our base camp and took some snaps.
We then had Maggi for our breakfast( I am gonna sue them for that 2 minutes tag). We packed our bags and after a briefing by Chella anna, we started our trek. Shankar'ji' was leading the trek and I tried my best to assist him. After crossing the reservoir, we entered the forest trail. Initially it was smooth going but later thorns decorated our way. After pushing ourselves through the thorns, we started to walk on large pebbles. Shankar'ji' had to take a call now- thorns or water and he chose the latter. We were now walking(slipping) on the streams. And some special applause here to "Krithish IV std D sec" and "Adhi" who kept up with Shankar'ji's speed. I was really astonished on seeing the mental strength of these guys. Way to go guys. And suddenly I slipped and dropped my cam in the water(I have fixed it now).
Then we reached a "Butterfly zone" and it was such a pleasure to see such a lot of butterflies(was it 50s or 100s?) around me. After some walking, we did a 70 degree climb(I loved this one) and reached the first pool. But we did not stop here as our destination was pool 2. Then came a thriller, a risky climb. Shankar'ji' and I climbed it without much difficulty using our "Dragon Monkey Style" moves and helped the others to climb it successfully. A special thanks here to all the volunteers who helped us in this process. Finally after numerous 5 more minutes we reached the second pool. It was such a great pleasure to jump into water after a long walk.
Chella anna tied a rope across the pool to ensure that the non-swimmers are safe. Then, Selva anna, Chella anna
The kids were really awesome and far better than us in their mental courage and strength. The team we did, the amount of volunteering, escaping from the polluted into the wilderness and getting close to nature, they were all really fabulous. A lot of thanks to the organiser Kitty the Naughty, Chella anna Shankar"j