A trek through heaven
‘Twas on the fourth day,
As out of the woods we made our way,
From all that perspiration,
For this write up, came the inspiration.
As I stumbled over the stones,
Amid thorns that pricked me to the bones,
I reflected over the past four days,
And the mountains where we had stayed.
We started out on early on Friday,
Packed into jeeps, we set out on our way,
And entered the forest,
Prepared, we thought, for any test.
Soon we hit the trail,
‘twas no holy grail.
For miles it went,
Within an hour some of us were spent.
It was full of rocks,
The kind that make you want to pull up your socks.
We hopped and skipped, from stone to rock,
And in our feet, we felt the shocks.
Soon we had stopped for rest,
We really were in need of respite,
We got into some water pool,
And in the cool, played the fool.
But we had failed to notice the Dragon,
That was sitting right beside our wagon,
And when we saw the monitor lizard,
We marveled at it, as we would at tricks from a wizard.
But soon we had to be on our way,
We could not extend out stay.
There were many areas waiting to be explored,
For sure, that weekend we would never be bored.
We stopped for a little break for Tea.
It was a Sankarji speciality.
And here Brijesh revealed his trickery,
He had forgotten the food, and had condemned us all to stay hungry!
Rage was directed against him,
But it did not affect him,
For he had a hide,
As thick as a buffalo’s skin.
In resignation we trudged onward,
Putting our leg ever forward,
Through streams and rocks,
Letting the water wet our socks.
The sights kept getting better and better,
Sweat made our clothes wetter and wetter.
We marched along the streams,
Looking at landscapes straight from our dreams.
At one point we had to ferry,
Swimming for me, did not seem so merry.
So we climbed the rock along the brook,
It was no climb straight out of the book.
Steep and scary it surely was,
But caution had already been sent for a toss,
Slip we did on a little bit of moss,
But in the end, we climbed it like a boss.
And so we reached the other side,
While the others had a jolly ride,
We could look back on that rock with pride,
And say, we had had the tougher ride.
Soon we had reached the campsite,
And lay down in the stream for some respite,
Had out meager repast of noodles and broth,
And lay down to sleep amidst the rubble and the moths.
The next day began bright and early,
The dew drops were nice and pearly.
The plan for the day was to ford a gorge,
For such a feat, a strong will we had to forge.
We dived into the waters, knowing not what awaited us in its depths,
As we swam from rock to rock, holding our breaths.
Tiring it was for all who swam,
Except for those with a tube, which was comfy as a pram,
But the waterfall which awaited us at the other end was a charm,
And we made it to the falls without much harm.
What a sight the falls were!
Never had I seen anything near.
Our thoughts above the roar we could not hear,
And the water cut forcefully like a spear.
After the photos were taken,
It was time to return,
And swim back the same way we did,
It was now as easy as play for a kid.
Soon after we reached the rain began to pour.
It came down heavily with a roar.
But we CTCians are made of stern stuff,
And we decided that it nature wanted it that way, we too would play rough.
And so climb we did in slippery muck,
We slipped and fell, it was our luck.
But reach the top of the ridge we did,
Again, for an experienced team it was easy as play for a kid.
We walked on the ridge for a while,
Amid red sander logs that lay in a pile,
It was difficult for me to reconcile,
Why man would want a forest to defile.
We walked on past and reached a stream,
From where the view of the falls of earlier in the day was a dream,
A little rest was required,
For many of us were dead tired.
We did not cover much distance that day,
To the top of the falls we found our way,
A campsite like that I had never seen.
It was like living in a dream.
Sleep was hard to come by that night,
As the full moon shone nice and bright,
Even as we were tucked in snug and tight,
What kept us awake was the memory of the days sights.
The next morning we were a bit lazy,
The plan for the day was a little hazy.
We walked on along the stream,
Hopping and clicking photos of every scene.
The third day of a trek is usually when I get a little bored,
But on this day, the forest had for us scenery stored,
Such as we had never seen before,
To see it made our hearts soar!
Many were the pools that shimmered and shone,
Like light through a diamond or some gemstone.
We dived into many of them with joyous shouts,
And swam in the water like a bunch of trout,
But all too soon it was time to move,
And along the trail we had to continue.
And soon we hit upon a jeep trail,
Several miles along it to was a holy grail.
But some of us were already a little exhausted,
So along the trail we stopped and rested.
A little away someone found a viper,
It was small and still it made some shiver,
We pestered the snake for an autograph,
And it obliged with a photograph.
Soon we chanced upon a babbling brook.
We had not known about it, and found it by hook and by crook.
It was decided to spend the night there,
And at 700 odd meters, drink in the cool mountain air.
The night was stormy and dark.
The choices before us were stark.
We had to snuggle up to sleep under the tarps,
Or feel the rain on our skin like darts.
Some braved it under tarps while some fled to the huts,
I’m telling you, that was the night when the sky went nuts!
It poured and poured all night,
Never did a star come into sight,
Behind me Arun Sekhar and Vipin Lal got into a fight,
One asked the other to move, and the other said that it was much too tight.
But the next morning was nice and bright,
On the last day we had to climb some height.
And so we cooked the upma and set on our path,
With a song on our lips and the tune in our heart.
A hard walk it was, up and down the grasslands,
But within the hour we had a view from the grandstands.
Photos were taken while the khakras were eaten,
With cheese that was beginning to go rotten.
The last few hours of the trek were already upon us.
And we had to exit without much fuss.
We walked on the ridge for a while,and came to a fall so steep that they would inspire
But one slip and you could expire.
Slowly and gingerly we stepped down the rock,
All the time praying to the gods,
It took us quite some time to come down,
And find the way to the town.
A long long walk awaited us,
But first, a visit to the cave awaited us.
Two miles we walked,
In less than an hour we reached a nice spot.
Here again payasam was cooked and a fish was caught.
The veggies ate the payasam while the mallus had a meal nice and hot.
And then began the longest walk of my life.
Rocky and sharp it was like walking on a knife.
Ten miles or more we had to walk,
And soon we did not even have breath to talk.
On and on it went,
But we legged it even when spent.
Here and there we saw or heard,
Animals or birds that made us decide to walk in a herd.
Before long the light was out,
And we thought we had discovered a path to the way out.
But here we lost our way,
And ended up in the middle of nowhere.
Fortunately we saw a light on the horizon.
And it made us disbelieve in atheism.
For all of us were tired and exhausted,
By such a long walk that had us transported.
The team split again and again,
And in the dark we could see nor discern.
But somehow we reached a small hamlet,
Where we sat down making a terrific racket.
The jeeps were called and arrived soon,
Not a moment too soon, for some were ready to swoon.
And with that we exited the mountains,
Bodies tired, but hearts and minds jumping like fountains.
We said our farewells and returned to the city,
To look at the city and those who stay in it with pity.
For we had seen sights that few eyes have seen,
And walked in places where few legs have been.
And it was a pity that it had to all end,
For those four days had been better than my happiest dream.