Once it had happened to me when I was still a kid. Those were the days when the Sun did not blaze as hot as it does now and the summer evenings used to be cool with pleasant winds for me and my friends to go play. It was in one such summer that me and my family had gone for a trip. A trip to Chakrata, a small cantonment town in Uttarakhand. There we checked into this handsome guest house built during the British reign and the most exciting thing for me were the cute little fireplaces in each of the rooms. We were allotted this perfect room from wherein you can see the snow-capped Himalayan range from the room itself, and later, the next morning to be precise, I learnt that it was not only mountain facing but also east facing, making our room the perfect one for me for I, a person who dearly loves everything about nature, could welcome the morning Sun from my room itself. I can still picture it all in my mind.
That day, on making some inquiries we were told that there was a heavenly waterfall in the forests, about five kilometers trek away from the lodge. The ever excited me, my brother and our cousins couldn’t resist the temptation and decided to take matters into hand and so we geared up for the long trek and set away. The journey started pretty easy and we were making good time when we happened across a village. It was a simple Mountain village with all it’s hardy people. Not many were in sight, but there was something festive in the air and we soon came to know a wedding was in procession. It was a refreshing sight, the simplistic merriment. We asked for directions and continued on our way. The scenery was completely different now, we were walking across some hilly grasslands with the same beautiful ranges still in sight. But soon enough the scenery all but changed completely. We had entered the forests. Following the trail became much harder now, sometimes it would completely vanish and at others it would diverge and we after going the wrong ways had to backtrack, until we met some woodcutters far away from the village who offered to show us the way. Oh the thrill of maneuvering through the rocky pathways like a pro!!
After walking us for a kilometer or so, they had to go a different way and we were by ourselves once again. Thirsty and tired we kept trudging on until we found a small stream winding it’s way through the mountains with its fresh clean cool waters. We made a stop to catch our breaths and refill our water supplies. And that is when it started for me, the realization, the hushed whistling cool winds through the lush mountain forests, the birds chirping away in their hidden spots in the trees and the fresh, lightly pine scented forest air to breathe. That was the first time I know when I had lost myself completely to the surrounding beauty and had truly been one with the nature.
We still had ways to go before reaching our destination and our motto became “Follow the Water”. It would surely lead us to the waterfall as well, we figured. After a good two hour long trek we finally reached some farmlands where the water had been diverted for irrigation. Scratched, scraped and tired we noticed a winding road a little distance ahead. And miraculously we spotted our parents’ cars making their way towards the falls. Well we missed them by that much, but we knew we were on the right track now and we simply joined the road and well, it was the adrenaline rush that made us run, pelting on the roads towards the direction of the car like maniacs. Shouting and howling and hooting in the air, we finally made it. I tell you, it was a breathtaking sight, truly a little piece of personal Nirvana. It took a lot for us to not jump into the waters right away, so we did it. We jumped into the ice cold waters and splashed and played. Finally we lazed around simply drinking in the beauty of it all.
Earn Your Own Little Heaven!