Monday, October 02, 2006

Darling........Darjeeling ......- Part I

A couple of months back I visited Darjeeling, Gangtok and ___________. The place was heavenly, if you are a nature lover. I cannot express it in words and so expect a series of photoessays - of the journey. Enjoy with me

Off to vacations - after a long time and mootably a well deserved one. My kid is full of anticipation and is enjoying the train.

New Jalpaiguri after an arduous still an enjoying two day train journey - thankfully our taxi is waiting for us. Everyone is a bit tired and no one is interested in anything but reaching the hotel. Even the hunger, borne out of the not so appetising breakfast, lunch and dinner regimen of Rajdhani express, plays its part in increasing the weariness and peskines.

The Journey to Darjeeling however revs up the spirit as the weather gets more pleasent and immense beauty of nature with the lush green surroundings and an air quality that relaxes us.

The hills and the valleys : they are awesome - the first streak of delight on the faces of our kids appear when the toy train peaks out of the thick wood and coos to attract attention. Even we grown ups feel like (and do) yelling in delight with our children. Tired bones being forgotten already.

The first of the umpteen natural water falls that will enthrall us over the journey (beware you will get bored of the numbers). But the first one was a bundle of joy. We stopped our taxi and just stood facing it - taking in the freshning drops that suspend in the air and fascinated by the sheer volume of water that flowed casually in front of us.

And then as we climb higher the clouds descend on the road - simply. You open the window - forget the AC and just let the touch of those clouds make you feel ------well on cloud nine. No, we are not tired anymore. We are just ecstatic.

My kid is now glued to his window seat watching those gentle clouds - feeling them and wondering at the marvel thats nature. He has forgotten the tiring journey that he has just had and his peskiness at my inability to offer him a nice place to sleep is dissolved - he (and all of us) are looking forward to a gret time ahead.
And then to his (& ours) delight - we encounter the toy train. The driver of our taxi - a simple and a very nice person - was quick to get off the taxi and was stopping the train. Why we wondered? and then we realised - another taxi was parked just round the curve of the road by a careless person very close to those rails - a possible accident averted. But then for us it was wonderful - everyone wanted a utilise the opportunity to get the first hand feel of the train.

The train finally leaves and so do we in opposite directions - promising each other another, more intimate meeting - soon.

Finally, we arrive at our hotel - its about evening and our hotel is a outside the main city thats darjeeling on an isolated peak which is quiet, surrounded by clouds and, if my use the word(s) - intriguing and mysterious. The likes of what you see in ramsay brother movies - which if you see from a distance look like haunted cottages.
However, the lobby and the entrance did give it a look of a professional and well managed abode. So, its time to rest - or is it? Well kittu (our kid) surely knew what - as soon as he enters the room finds the bed to his liking and off he goes.

We had a delightfule dinner - after some rest in the cosy rooms.

Enjoyed some celebrating with a small band put by the hotel in the evening - played "antakshari" with other tourists - and with dreams for the next day slept well.

I take the first break, will continue with my musings on a place that I loved as much as I did when I had toured Kashmir several years ago.
Be with me and enjoy the nature's marvellous creation. Will be back