September 29, 2015

Yaar Bina Chain Kahan re

"Friends are relatives we get to choose."

I had read this quote some where and every time I remember it, I agree to it like never before.

Every friend is unique but if I segregate all of them, they would fall into three categories.

1. Friends, who are 'Hi Hello type' and when they meet up we manage to have a blast. 
2. Friends, with whom you share details of every second of your life. I suspect after certain age we do not get into such friendships. Unless you marry your very best friend. (But then who the hell keeps on poking nose in the spouses' life every now and then? Talk about independence)
3. Friends whom you don't meet frequently, you talk to them once in a while but they still remain close. (or they are childhood buddies) So much that you never feel the distance. They are always there. Always.

Catching up with the third category is fun. Supreme fun. There would be new stories and new discussions in the air (WhatsApp is on cloud, remember?) and yet there would that thick old connection. Thicker than blood. I believe, at least. So when yesterday I was getting bored at home (After a super hectic day and cold syndromes striking back) I decided to catch up with some friends from the third category.

Singapore flatmate 1: This blogger mam has recently shifted her butts along with her body to India from Singapore which leaves only three close friends to meet in Singapore,if at all I implement the dream plan of visiting 'my second most favorite country to live'.  While we were discussing about her 'Groom Hunting' activities I realized, the fun we had in Singapore with Chai can never be experienced again, Unless our flat mate mentioned below decides to buy her wedding gown from Mumbai :D

Singapore flatmate 2: This celebrity who  represents Indian diversity like nobody's business,had shifted to India from Singapore long back. You might spot her with a drawing of the kind of wedding gown she wants for herself in Bangalore. With this she also collects data which proves India's inability to manufacture designer wedding gowns. Here we are not talking about 'Make In India'.

Friend D: This friend who is going through the most difficult phase of his life, surprises me with his maturity to handle turmoils almost every time I talk to him. The kind of friendship we share has to be decorated with titles like "Together from Kindergarten but never bothered to actively grow the friendship" or "Age old friends-who-don't-talk-much, are better than new friends who talk and still can not understand each other".

After talking to these three friends, content with the way I had ended the day I dozed off in no time.

Such are some friends and friendships. Connecting to them makes you fill the void created by 'nothingness' in your life.


I heard the alarm next morning, and was surprised to find myself start the day and not snoozing it off. Very much my old self. After suffering from the hangover, I was struggling to fill my day with enough doze of adrenaline or satisfaction, just enough to get up early and get going.

September 25, 2015

Targeted in advance

I love throwing surprises and host parties. There was a time when I used to plan surprise farewells like a pro ( A good number of seven in total) and enjoy the whole process of surprising/shocking friends - family. From a small personalized letter to big farewell parties - Surprises I planned were in all shapes and sizes! They include a carton of Buttermilk packs, story books, self made birthday cards, home baked cakes and air fryers! Planning surprises do give me a sense of life, my joyful life. Some time back, while reading my own blog I realized I had stopped experiencing such big small joys in life. I made a come back last week, which I mentioned some time back.

I want to create such moments of affection for all people I am close to. I had one opportunity at office too, yesterday. So I grabbed it (Read: Tried).One of my two company partners (AS(S), ah A & S) who are friends, philosophers & mentors were taken aback when they found we were having our hands full with a card, a cylinder like barrel and a chocolate cake which we took out from that 'under the table' cabinet we share. We, three poor (okay, what is the point when they are not going to read this ever!) team members have been planning for this celebration some two months back led by yours truly.

One of us don't come every day to the office and handles IT stuff from his own office. So when we realized A's birthday has to be celebrated when all are there (and not on the actual birthday), we were not worried about the 'surprise' factor! We were going to celebrate some three days in advance, it would be a surprise itself! :D

We had decided not to include S- the other company partner in the planning committee, as he was busy in his dad's hospitalization. (Also, we were scared that he would hint A being a true partner.) We were not too resourceful anyway.After many brain storming sessions where our cafeteria waiter also contributed by creating a storm of tea every single time, we could not decide on a gift or a any other plan. I was running out  of those imaginary blood cells who carry a virtue called 'Patience'.

Then exactly two days back, some auspicious star formation was created day & so we could decide on one single gift. That cylinder barrel which we we took out from the cabinet along with a cake and a card was nothing but a rolled magnetic dart board for the in house game champion A. Something which A wanted to play in the office in those moments of stress, but never got the chance.The cake and the venue (what else, but our own small office) management was done by our IT officer. I had sourced the card and the cake, while our designer had happily approved the aesthetics for both.

A, being the introvert was a bit conscious seeing all smiling faces, but could brave the cake cutting sessions. The birthday boy (Hah!) was blushing for exactly 37 minutes before going back to work.

To protect their privacy I can not put the image of our card here but it had ten small cards stuck inside one big card. Talk about cost cutting and start ups! (*Coyly looking at keyboard* Yours truly was appreciated for the concept!) Design approval and the cake manager got their credits as well, along with our background noise - the other mentor S who was surprised by our game plan along with A.

After observing the card many times, the targeted birthday boy raised his eyebrows and asked,
"Bubblegum, you are good at creating surprises for people haan."

I grinned and said, " I know"!

S, Some day (Highly unlikely) if you read this I just want to let you know. This was the most boring surprise I have ever thrown. I owe you one kick ass surprise birthday party, next year may be?

September 21, 2015

aPOINTment # 6

When you just keep on running and the endorphin starts kicking in the body, you can not/ should not do anything but enjoy the 'Runner's high'. Well, do not widen your eyes. I did not run enough to get the high but my life ran. It is still running and I am merely coping up with the speed, huffing puffing sometimes but still enjoying the 'High'.

  • A trip to my home was more than fun. Panipuri and Kulfi, Gupshup and shopping. Those three days were so much packed, I tell you. All I had wished was to rest and do nothing (No, My in laws don't do Zor Zulam on me. I was just plain bored of some things.) when I planned for the home trip. What I realized is, 'resting' is even more boring for me. A day completely without doing nothing does not work for me. I feel depressed. 
  • Baking-vaking happened at home. Baked a really chocolaty cake for my cousin and my mother. Yes, both of them have their birthdays this week. My frock buddy N. What to say, I just missed meeting her. Why? Because a lot of social meetings, upcoming marriages in the family. If you are reading this, shoot me :D Oh, well I am trying to call you in a while, better you pick my call.
  • I fell in love with Sarees one more time. I took out all sarees proudly owned by my mom and conveniently declared ownership on all of them. Only if I can flaunt sarees the way every graceful Indian woman does. Talk about dreams. 
  • I started a new tradition in my family. In Mumbai, as writing & reading in my mother tongue has almost become a code language between me and mom-in-law, I wrote her a birthday letter in my mother tongue without using a single English word. Yes, I feel so good about it. No, it was not a threatening letter, guys. Chill. She liked it. In fact, loved it.
  • I am feeling so close to Hindi now a days. Like never before, I feel the language.(Don't ask) I want to practice speaking in Pure Hindi, hopefully mixed with Urdu more and more in my life.
  • Buying a gift for my mom with my brother was a fun move. A ride on his bike while getting drenched in the rain can not be plain. Not at all. More fun was checking out his expressions when I asked him to accompany me in a shop which had already accommodated around twenty females hunting for sarees and their male partners lined up in the lobby, doing nothing. 
  • My team at work as expected, did not bother me while I was happily enjoying my second 'much needed' holiday this month. A break from a break is needed now. 'Much Needed'.
  • Ah, all these things happened while I kept on sneezing time to time. To my dad's horror, it seems I am allergic to milk. (Yey, not the Chai okay?) Which if proven, gates of guilt can be opened and I can have the strong Adarakhwali chai every single day!

September 15, 2015

Loss of the (ear)ring

To both mothers' dismay, I am not into Gold. Or diamonds.Or even Silver. No, I am not the one who hates ornaments. In fact, I love ear rings ,anklets and rings sometimes. Only if they are imitation. I was given many gold ornaments and some diamond ones when I got married. I love all of them but who wears them everyday?! They happily rest in a locker of a nearby bank most of the time.

Coming back to ear rings. My great love for ear rings. I have collected, preserved and flaunted many many of them, right from the day I started buying imitated ear rings when I was in the high school. I still have that 'Smiley wale earrings' bought while I was in the college. ( I kid you not!) I was pretty clear about the (only) self-made fashion rule: "The ear ring should match exactly match my attire." Hence, the enthusiastic shopper in me would go gaga over every big or small ear-ring stall my eyes could find, wherever I go. So much that, I also had bought a pair from 'Saputara' which is a small tribal hill station in the corner of Gujarat. Who buys ear rings from such hill stations?

I am actually a person who hates superstitions, but when it comes to 'Lucky' stuff I am stumped! I had my 'Lucky watch' which was my dad's watch (Oops), I used to believe in my 'Lucky hair style'and I have my 'Lucky ear rings'. No, I had my luckiest ear ring. :/

I lost one (and the only), a couple of weeks bag. The small white semi-star (Don't ask!) shaped studs which I flaunted in all the interviews I have given so far, in my life. Not to brag but each of the interview had got successfully converted into jobs/admissions.

So when I lost this luckiest pair, my heart sank. I silently cried invisible tears. No, it was not real or even an expensive piece of an imitation ornament set. It was more than that, the luckiest pair. I have preserved  the one piece from the pair which was left with me, thinking I might turn lucky and other piece would magically come back to me.

I am still waiting for the magic to happen.May be I would get the piece back? May be I would get another luckier pair? May be I would get rid of this superstition.

May be.

The Spiti Story-5

Part 1, 2, 3 and 4 here.

There were bumpier roads. There were bikers. There were rugged riders riding them. There were a couple of sturdy cars with high horse power engines roaring on the path. More than anything else, it was Adrenaline getting sprinkled every where, for me. We were on the way to Chandratal.

I was quite excited by the idea of living in a camp, hiking to the lake and framing splendid beauty if I can. I wanted to let me eyes wide open and fill them with blues, grays and greens till they over flow.

When we spotted our tents, it brought excitement in some of us and some were nervous at the thought of spending the night inside those tiny fabric toy-looking rooms. We ate something, kept our luggage there and started for the most spectacular site in Spiti.

Chandratal is a 'moon' lake at the height of 4300 meters in Spiti. It is one of the two highest wetlands in India. Once the road ends, there is a hike of around 30 minutes to reach the lake. One should always acclimatize to the high lands before starting for this place. I can not explain the beauty of this place with words any more.

When we saw the lake from distance after taking the turn from the peak we were hiking on...

We were closer to the lake.. A small stream of water below the track,,,

When we reached the lake, Felt the lake. The Chandra Tal. I almost thought if this is Chandratal, how would be the mighty 'Maansarovar'!

The colour of the lake changed with the direction of sun rays. It was not a magic but still a magic.

We spent good amount of time in the super windy atmosphere. We saw some crazy pupils jumping in the water without clothes and having fun while I refused to remove my shoes too! We jumped, we sat peacefully ( Okay, not me!), we clicked, we admired nature. Almost a sense of Niravana, may be.

Coming back to the base was quick as almost every one was stunned by the beauty of the valley. We were not knowing the actual thrill was in braving cold that night! :D

The chilling wind was trying to penetrate in the multiple layers of sweaters - jackets we were wearing. Getting inside the tent could help a bit,but not much. Our driver T came to our rescue and offered us the local wine made out of 'Jawar' which they drink to save themselves from cold. We all enjoyed it to the core, yeah me and Mr.ISB - the almost teetotalers of the gang also took shots!

We were hungry and so in the dining tent, along with other 17 ( Ah,, random) foreigners (mostly from Israel) we had Rajma Chawal and Achar. The simple menu appealed to our stomach and not to our taste buds. After dining we all decided to occupy the tent shared by me and SIL to play games. While they could enjoy cards, I the-no-cards-gamer sealed my self in the sleeping bag. After struggling for a while in the chilling weather, every one decided to sleep as the next day our return journey was to kick off.

Next morning when I unsealed myself to switch off the Auto Alarm in the phone, we had to carry a search operation to find the mobile as multiple layers of clothes and sleeping bags had engulfed us completely.

A cup of Kawah and a bit courage we all started our return journey. A journey, I did not have a heart to make. I wanted to stay there forever.This never happened to me before!

Spiti, Stay Special! 

September 14, 2015

The Spiti Story-4

You can find the first three parts of the story, here , here and here.

Visiting Ki Monastery was a treat to our eyes and hearts. For me it was eyes, for many it was the heart. Talk about having a camera in your hands, but then nothing to regret. Some people believe in 'Dharma' and some people believe in 'Dharma thorough Karma'! :D

We had to visit one more monastery near by and so when a Lama approached us with a request of dropping him there we were more than happy. We wanted to know more about Lamas and so it was a win-win situation. The Lama talked about those cold months where Spiti wears the blanket of snow. Each monastery stocks one year inventory of  eatables and other necessary things. The supply chain engineers in the gang approved of the complex supply conditions here.

When we reached the next Monastery, he said he would take us around which made us happier. We walked down to the village, chit chatting about the life cultivated here by locals. We saw a group of foreigners with their geared bicycles and silently paid respect to them. We kept on climbing wherever the Lama took us, we saw amazing scenic beauty from different levels of the hill. SIL, Mr.ISB and Friend K managed to climb the last level where he declared that we can see fields here but for some reasons the temple is closed. We, left outs had lost interest in climbing by now and were more into framing those green fields with Himalayan peaks in background.

The Lama now wanted to be with us for our journey to the next destination - Losar, which was more than a couple of hours away, where we had to stay that night. Now, SIL and Bro-Buddy found something fishy and we took the help of our driver T. He listened to us and formed a plan to get away with the Lama. We all sat in the bus and our helpful driver T told him something which we did not understand but Lama asked us to continue without him. We were relieved. The Driver T told us that the Lama was mentally unstable. We were, :O

Our next destination was coming closer after some hours, which were killed by sleeping , talking, sleeping, eating, again sleeping ,some shopping - local crafty stuff and talking. Our driver took us to a small field which had one single yellow roofed house with cattle grazing near by. Similar to what we as kids used to draw in our drawing books! :)

Our bus was now riding on a straight Kachcha road under an umbrella of  the dark black sky. The sky was cloudless. It was like that Navratri traditional ghaghra with a lot of 'Aabhala' (Mirrors like buttons in different shapes and sizes) stitched on to the fabric. My SIL also managed to lose her fancy woolen cap by peeping out of the window of the car to see that lonely yet glamorous sky. The Bro buddy was mentally ready for the star-shooting activity, ah, clicking this sky with his fancy devices and tripod.

By the time we reached the Guest house arranged by Nomadic, it was Dark. Darkness was more than frightening. People went straight to their rooms to freshen up. While SIL managed to take her Not-So-Powerful nap, rest of us gathered in Friend N's room to chitchat. Listening to some humorous incidents in Friend N's life was so unique that first time I felt, some body had my eyes and ears (and mouth too) to register generic and yet not normal incidents happening in life. Once we were told that the dinner was ready we all went to the most warmest room we had seen in last few days.

This room had an old coal based heater, Indian sitting, frames with Spiti photos and books all around. The heat we all wanted that night was coating our bodies slowly thanks to the heater. After the dinner some of us went to our respective rooms while the two male species of our gang went to the terrace which was a part of the coldest dessert in the world that night, I along with SIL tried to cover ourselves as much as we could and went there to meet them. We managed to stay there for 5.57 minutes there and decided to go back to our room. We were anticipating the end of the day, little less we knew that the night was the 'Gyan ki Raat'. We found wisdom that night.

Friend N came to our place to ask how was our trip to the terrace,where guys were trying to click the gorgeous sky. We started talking on it and on different people around us and different situations we are/were facing and philosophy and Bro-buddy and marriages and quotes and spiritualism and love stories and,. One guy attempted to join us while Mr.ISB was fast asleep in the next room. At 3 am we decided we should sleep and the collective wisdom later on made the 3/4th of my post here.

When we got up in the morning with  sweet day dreams of seeing the most beautiful place in  Spiti-  'Chandratal' that day, we were surprised by the beautiful landscape in the day light when we peeped out from the balcony. Last night, it was difficult to see and feel the beauty around the guest house. Some times our mind does not permit us to see the silver lining in our lives. Because we judge the situation, the person and the face. That is how worries and bias generate.

A mug full of coffee and good old Alu ke Parathe made us ready to seize the famous Chandratal!

September 11, 2015

The Spiti Story-3

If you have come across this link by fluke, you can soak in madness here in story-1 & story-2!

When  I came to know what Marial Rukeyser said long back, I could not agree more.
 "The world is made up of stories and not atoms."

If you come across some wise and some adrenaline provoking quotes in a cozy place which you never want to leave, while the rest of the world around it freezes in the cold, how do you feel? Well, I can not describe the feeling but it was not the only quote I read that night.

When we left Sisu, we did not really know that those six hours of travelling would be so worth our efforts to keep our bums glued to car-seats and struggles to keep our bodies intact while travelling on those rocky roads. We were heading to Kaza. Crossing cold streams and white clouds had become usual. Himalayan peaks kept on peeping to trace our presence. Mr.ISB kept on sleeping during the ride while some of us praised his super natural ability to sleep anywhere. Touchwood.

This trip if nothing, proved one thing. In front of Nature the man is very small. When we worship 'Panch Mahatatva' or 'Five elements' - Sky, Water, Land, Fire and Air - we pray the nature. The nature is nothing but almighty!

The atmosphere in the car while travelling to Kaza (Tempo Traveler is a car, okay?) changed from sleepy to hungry, junk to musical. Music made us travel in the old world of melodies. Also made us float in the air of new hippy songs. "College mein nayi nayi aai ik ladaki hai", "Sawanr lu" & some other peppy songs were sung together thanks to playlists created friend N and SIL.

When we saw Hotel Denzor after getting drenched in the beauty of this valley, we felt like home. The yellow blue door with lots of stickers was just a window to the sunshine. Walls with quotes, book shelves filled with books (my favorite part!), beautifully made rooms and hot water in buckets made us realize our mistake of staying here only for a night.

To my good, we also got Wifi (No network for mobile phones!) which made me message our parents about our whereabouts. Honestly none of us were really into 'the getting back to the virtual world' mode. Mobile phones were only cameras now. We had started living in the real world, in the present. Some lines from the song 'Yeh Moh Moh ke dhage' can justify the feeling,

"Tez hai Dhara, Behete hai hum Awara..
Aa tham ke saanse le Yahan...."  

Ah, this is also the place where my SIL asked Friend N to lock herself up in the room which was shared by me and SIL. No, I am not that 'Khaufnak Aurat' who can burn her SIL but while I was floating around & flipping books downstairs, all she (SIL) wanted to do was to take bath in hot water. She just wanted to make sure that I enter the room whenever I want to, without waiting for her to come out. Some how I managed to find that friend N had the key to my room! :D

After devouring delicious food (Kheer on top of that!) and checking some good books, some of us walked in the cold dessert as I would like to call it. Some like me I chose to just bundle myself in the blanket and sleep. Just to get up at 6 am in the morning next day!

I felt surprisingly fresh when I got up and went down stairs to read those Travel Magazines collected by himI walked for some time in the lobby and the backyard while waiting for others to get up. I was keen on feeding myself some porridge, omelettes and fruits. I also grabbed a mug of coffee which tasted better than the over hyped coffee Start-bucks of the world make.

Some where I wanted to implement this quote I read there, and sail the Spiti without 'Baggage'!

From Denzor, we traveled to the Ki Monastery. A world of Lamas situated right at the peak from where you can appreciate the mighty Spiti Valley with wide eyes!

The Monastery was enjoyed by inhaling the peace inside the temple. We could meet a team making a documentary on the life of Lamas. Child monks in maroon robes shied away from us while a monk with a smart jacket (?) managed to get into the car with us. 

The fun had just started as we had to visit one more monetary with the 'Lama' and experience the sky with hundreds of shining stars!

PS: Whenever I age and you, Mr.ISB want me to cherish my memories with your bank account full of money, you can gift ourselves a stay for 4-5 days at Denzor. I would just say,'Welcome' and start preparing for the journey. 

September 10, 2015

The Spiti Story-2

If you have not got the generic story of  the Gyan Summary of our trip, you better read this first!

If you are not privileged to listen to my long blabbers, you might as well test your patience by reading this story further. For others, you have no choice guys! Friendship, remember?

It was the moment of 'Non-Conformance' when my Sister-In-Law warned me saying 'Somethings can go for a toss if I join a well planned trip'.I being a very punctual person, ridiculed the statement thinking I would manage to push every one and every thing on time and stick to the plan. I was wrong. Let me start from 'The Starting'.

The random question to me by my bro buddy about visiting Spiti this year was answered by a big 'NO' around one and a half months back. This was followed by 'Why NO?, Let us go yaar' by my Sister in Law. One by one names were clubbed together to form a group of people visiting the valley with their complex demographics and different personality traits! The planning was done by Nomad and the co-ordination was done by Bro-buddy and Mr.ISB. ( If you think MBA and Operations together can create that 'Perfect Plan' you are wrong here!! *Spoiler*!)

Now we were Seven! 

1. Yours truly
2. Mr.ISB : Who seems to be more popular than yours truly thanks to his powerful silence and sixers
3. Sister-In-Law: Who by law is a sister, otherwise an in house friend
4. Bro-Buddy: The one encouraged many kids to go for higher studies and get married without implementing any of those acts
5. Friend N: A significant contributor to Wisdom collected in the trip
6. Friend K: Sister of N by balancing her open expressions by her very own introvert nature
7. Aunty: Mother of N & K who believed in her fitness more than any of us! 

Days passed and tickets were booked. Funds were transferred and leaves got approved using several methods from 'Saam Daam Dand Bhed' techniques. The only thing left in me was the consciousness that screamed out loud - 'I am really going to be on Himalayas after more than a decade',which appeared at 5 pm on the day before the trip. I am precise when I say 5 pm because it is the time when I re-look at my to-do list in the  office!! Any how I managed to finish the list partially and create a list of tasks to finish before leaving for the airport, the next day. Things were in full control till I entered my room to pack the bag,after returning from the office. I saw a big black mouse jumping on the table (!) which postponed the bag packing activity to the next morning! It called for my super efficient packing skill developed by my history of relocation within/out of the city.We (me and SIL) had kept some more tasks for the last hour as well. A serious problem occurred when we failed to book a cab for the airport drop due to the taxi driver's strike. I recalled 'The warning by SIL' the very moment. 

With the help of mom & dad we both reached Mumbai airport from where we were suppose to fly to Delhi. We killed more time than a couple of hours there doing nothing, thanks to the Air Traffic Control who managed to delay the departure of the flight by 1.5 hours. By the time we started from Mumbai, I guess Mr.ISB was already waiting for us on the Delhi Airport. Other members from Delhi reached the bus station from where we had to board a bus to Manali. The so called practical 'Planning' of both guys could not manage to bring us to the bus station on time & so friends, we missed the bus while others started off with the journey! After pulling luggage like a real sport, rushing in all the directions a person can find, changing Metros - we three (Me, SIL and Mr.ISB) found ourselves on the last row of that heavily engineered bus which did nothing but raised my doubts about the design of the Suspension it had after a few hours.

When the universe wants you to sit on the other row than the last, you get a helpful bus conductor. So while Mr.ISB decided to accompany the foreigner neighbor as a translator and keep the conductor sane, I accompanied my Sister In Law who was more than ready to sleep for twelve hours in that scary bus. Talk about dreams. God played the dice and we were tortured by the movie 'All Is Well' for three hours which did not let us sleep at all. I do not blame Abhishek Bachchan as he could make one uncle in the bus snore so loud that the jealousy surfaced out from every one around him - or I would like to  believe so, to console myself that I was not alone!

With some sleepy chatting sessions and a lot of confusion regarding the name of the station where we had to get down ( Pretty cool confusion - Patharcool, Pattharikundi or Patharikulh) our bus we managed to over take the bus with our friends on board. (A note for Bro-Buddy!) It was my first time in Manali and the only thing I could feel cool breeze, smell of fresh fruits and observe a monk in smarty sneakers! Poof! 

While waiting for our friends, we met our super matured and helpful driver for the tour - Let's call him Mr.T. Two awesome Aloo Paratha and a failed attempt to feel fresh, our friends arrived and now we were a gang which started for the guest house to dress up/freshen up to look like humans before our embark to Spiti. I would also like to mention that while reaching the guest house, I managed to start our conversation with a lot of bashing designed for Bro buddy and Mr.ISB who had planned the super tight schedule which failed to accommodate any buffer resulted by traffic situations at the Mumbai Airport and Delhi Metro.

The Manali guest house which was owned by Nomadic, where we met him for the first time, provided all basic necessities to fill our stomach and freshen up along with a beautiful view from the lovely terrace garden. Just when warnings by SIL had started to fade away in my mind, we got to know that there was a strike (one more!) which can make us come back from the Rohtang Pass itself. Then we can only dream about going to the next destination 'Sisu'! Phew. We decided to take the plunge!

Discussing about the strike situations and a bit of nervousness for the second longest travel track for the journey, we started off for Spiti! 

I know the above photo is not that great, especially if you are talking about 'Spiti' let me hop to the moment when we had yummy 'Maggie' (?!?!!?!?), Rajma Chawal, Kadhi and Momos on the way! Talk about tasty yet simple local food ( Some people did not like it, but I did it!) and cozy Dhabas. This was just a starting!

We crossed 'Rohtang Pass' which is 3978 mt above sea level and one of the highest passes in India, without suffering any bottlenecks resulted from the strike. This pass gave us some hints about what was in store for us in Spiti! 

The above photo is of Beas Kund which is a small temple with a small shallow well full of Sulfuric water, a cure for most of the skin problems. Not for people like me who are allergic to Sulfa!

After going down hill after passing Rohtang pass, we climbed to Kunzum Pass which is 4590 ft above sea level!

In case of Spiti, it is true, " The journey to the goal in life is more beautiful than the goal itself!"

After hogging on some Uncle Chips, Dairy milk Silks and biscuits, trying to make the Aux port work so that our journey can be musical and chatting with our driver Mr.T for six more hours, we reached our first ever destination Sisu. 

Snow laden mountain peaks peeping from the balcony of the sky and bone shivering wind hugging all around- The first feel of Spiti it was!

By the time we reached our guest house, we were shaken off by the intensity of  the wind. Super warm blankets in the room obviously were welcomed with open arms! The love for blanket which actually created silly idea of sewing a gown out of the same wool for the dinner,  made it a bit difficult for me to step out for the dinner. Too many of such 'lovely' thoughts provoked a headache which led us to go the 'Boys room' and settle there once again inside the blanket to watch TV while boys decided to do some random stuff.

The 'Papi Pet' finally won over all random acts and we attacked on the most yummiest Aloo sabji, tandoori roti, Paneer sabji with tangy achar. Some of us decided to digest food with a session of walk in the cold while some like me decided to hug that same blanket again dreaming fearing the head-bath I was to take next morning. 

Next day,the MOST BEAUTIFUL PLACE to live in Spiti was waiting for us! Stay tuned, if you have stayed till this line! :D

September 9, 2015

The Spiti Story-1

This post was published on Spicy Saturday by BlogAdda on 12th September! 

I have been bubbling with eagerness to paint my memories and some after effects of the trip on the blog. From the moment my Bro-Buddy asked told me to blog about the trip, I have been pondering over ways to collect all those tiny moments we lived together in Himalays and decorate them on a blog page. The pondering mind slowly gave up and the heart took over which asked me to start with the generic post about the trip to start with, just to be followed by detailed& S report. I promise.

Let me tell you something about Spiti. This valley which is now a part of the district called 'Lahaul & Spiti' in Himachal Pradesh is still in its ancient shape. As ancient as Himalayas, I felt. Contrary to the usual belief, this valley is not made by rivers flowing near by. It is the valley created by the ancient sea Tyths when Himalaya was created. Fossil exploration is very interestingly taken by researchers here, which proves the marine life in region before the Himalayan era. This story we discovered later on, while reading the material we found in one of the very cozy home stay at Kaza.

We friends, who collectively held calendars of 'friends of friends' and 'family members of the friends' together to draft a plan for this trip. The gang included an Amdavadi from Mumbai, A Mumbaikar from Mumbai, a Mumbaiakr from Pune, a Mumbaikar from Delhi and three Delhites from Delhi.If you think we are done with the complex demographics, let me tell you a member whom we lovingly call Aunty (A mother of two friends!) single handedly brought up the average age of the group. (Of course Aunty never stopped us from doing anything - including late night chatting which caused severe fatigue and zombie like symptoms in some of us.)

I am leaving the details of the trip to the next post, but the summary is I got more from this trip then I had thought of!

They say, " Make Peace With Yourself In Spiti"! We found wisdom too.

What do you expect when a gang with complex demographics goes to the Himalayan lonely highland which is largely unexplored. So much that at the end of the trip, Manali looked disturbingly crowded! Each of us had traveled, studied and worked in different places. Each of us was going through different stages of life - Denial for the wedding, finding grooms/brides, already married but still in the Boyfriend-Girlfriend phase etc. When we talked about life, we started noting down some conclusions whom we call 'Wisdom Points' with pride. '


Wisdom Number #1 : "When you are suffering, compare your pain with even worst sufferings in the world."

This was concluded by the Sister-In-Law when our bones were screaming due to the cold wind while going out for the dinner form the bus and also when the suspension of the bus cried with each of those billions of bumps hurt punched them, and us. We also immediately found an application of the wisdom which of course made my plump self a bit more confident!! ;-)

Wisdom Number #101: Do not expect anything from any one!

Being in the land of Spiti which has many Buddhist followers I believe, this is the message or the Brahmgyan by Buddha himself. Our friend N who concluded this is just the messenger, I suppose! On a serious note, not implementing this wisdom itself is the root cause of all complexities in our lives. I think "Karmanye-vadhika Raste Mafaleshu Kadachan" has to be the second part of this saying, which means "Do your work without expecting any results"!

Wisdom Number # 501: Duniya mein sabse bada Rog, Mere bare mein kya kahenge Log! In English: " The biggest sickness in the world is the craving for the approval from the society"

A master stroke for me. The friend N again proved herself while we discussed our own struggles and stories. It is the root cause of each of my worries and actions since long. I pondered over it that night. Digesting it,was almost like throwing a big heavy bag from my shoulder which has its handle still in my hand. Some day I would throw the handle as well from my hand. I understand my problem better than ever now!

Wisdom Number # 1001: Guys have a box called 'Nothingness' in their mind, which they tend to use the most.

Friend N, described the video she had seen before, in that small warm room where I along with Bro-buddy and Sister-In-Law were ready to take the knowledge! This wisdom brought a clouser to my doubt which said the same about Mr.ISB and my dad. The state of nothingness is a fictitious state for a female but I always doubted that it existed in some of the guys. Bro-buddy and Mr.ISB approved of the fact as well, and with that this wisdom became 'the biggest truth of life ever found for my Sister-In-Law!'

Wisdom Number # 007: "Jinki Gadi lagi hoti hai unko kabhi nind nahi ati!"

Directly from the bus driver. Yes. While coming back to Delhi from Manali , a truck driver whom we doubt was drunk could not apply the hand break or even change the gear on the slope which crashed the driver glass of our bus. He was caught with all papers of the truck and made to sit in our bus which took him to the police station  on the way. Unlike normal physical fights, our bus driver took it to his heart to put some sense in the young truck driver's mind. He asked him to call the truck owner, which was not picked. Our bus driver now believed that the owner knew that this truck driver was a lost cause and so he was not picking up the phone. The truck driver tried to convince him that the owner would have been asleep as it was 12 am already. This was the moment when the wisdom was delivered by our bus driver, approved by four supply chain officers in our gang including yours truly.

When a logistic company owner hires a driver and puts the truck with goods on the road he can not sleep properly till the truck reaches the destination. The floating possession which gives him bread and butter holds the risk of being stolen, meeting with an accident and many more. This is true for any dream-chaser or a risk taker. Once you are in the water, you can not sleep. You have to swim.


While making peace, we derived some wisdom. Does that happen to you too?