Hermit Mode On – Part 3

This one is a little long as it is also the last one. Do bear with me 🙂

..After our little jig at the Teesta Bridge we got into our car and started off to Kalimpong which was only a few kilometers away!

We reached our spot for White Water Rafting.
This is the part where I meet an amazing couple from Assam.
We were asked to change into clothes in which we wouldn’t mind swimming. Ready in our new attire we got into local Jeeps in groups of six which took us to the Rafting point.

A little bit of Science :
Although the sun was up and the air temperature felt comfortable, the water that we were about to step into was chilling cold. Because of a very basic thing – Snow forms when the atmospheric temperature is at or below freezing point (0 degrees Celsius or 32 degrees Fahrenheit) but when it starts melting the temperature of the water still stays 0 degrees Celsius for sometime due to the Latent heat of fusion. The temperature of water increases only with the incorporation of additional heat(sunlight is the source in this case).

We got on the raft quickly. There were two guides and six of us. Wore the inflated jackets. The guy who was sailing welcomed us with huge splashes of cold water with his oars. That’s the tradition they say. Four of us took the edges and were going to row the raft with oars. There were two children as well. So we put them in the centre to avoid tension. Finally when the raft started sailing there were only screams(the happy one’s) to be heard. When we were midway rafting we were told to jump into the water and swim till the end(the guides told us that they would push us into the water if we didn’t jump into it voluntarily). So we did. Swimming in that cold water felt like the entire body going numb.

But the experience was mind blowingly amazing. The entire affair was over in about 40mins and we ran to the Jeep to take us back to the place where we could change into some warm clothes.

We also wanted to try Para-gliding that day. Back into our warm clothes and into our car we rode towards Delo, Kalimpong – a place particularly renowned for sound paragliding. (You can also try stunts if you have knowledge about them and if your guide let’s you do so).

It was afternoon when we reached Delo & we were hungry. The best part about the hills is that there are innumerable shacks alongside the roads where you can grab momo’s, warm soups, noodles and the likes. It is almost a source of livelihood for many households. Their simplicity & hospitality is something I became fond of during my stay & took it back home as a beautiful learning.

Since it was the 31st there were a huge number of people who had gathered to experience Para-gliding. After waiting for our turn for sometime I finally got to get into my Gliding Suit. I wasn’t anxious or scared – made me wonder if something was wrong with me 😅

This experience is like that of watching a very beautiful movie – The world beneath is a beautiful place. (Self named imaginary movie).

After wrapping up from there we had been to Dr. Graham’s School. You can read about it in my Blog Nitty Gritty Of This Beauty

It was already evening after that and cold winds had started blowing. So we decided to go back to Darjeeling and enjoy the comfort of our hotel room!

We missed out on one place – Gouripur House (where Rabindranath Tagore used to stay sometimes for search of serenity and announce his writings through All India Radio) because of the cold. Nevermind, as there’s always a next time!

Meanwhile you can enjoy a sketch of the same (The House remained neglected for a long time, apparently it’s in ruins – going there will be another story all together I guess)!

Cheers!!

:))

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Hermit Mode On – Part 2

Our Chauffeur friend proposed that we take photographs while we cross the Teesta Bridge which joins the small village of Teesta Bazaar in Darjeeling with Kalimpong. So we got down to capture the beautiful scenery and absorb the fresh morning air – the sun was out by then – that was a little help for my skin.

If you take a close look, you can see the Teesta village on the left of the picture.

We Indians are absolutely crazy when it comes to Bollywood music – in a way that there is no one who doesn’t enjoy shaking a leg when these songs (Oonchi Hai Building..) are played loud.

In this case it was being played in open air. It was the 31st so the excitement was only reasonable.
We noticed a Truck with a few local guys in it. On being asked we got to know that they drove the truck along the entire town playing this really loud music as a way of welcoming the New year with some pomp & show – the truck was decorated with balloons and colourful ribbons – In the otherwise calm locality. They stopped at places where people joined them in the merriment. We did too 😁

These are few examples from the internet of what colourful trucks look like in India. Photo courtesy

The simplicity of it all kinda unwinds you when you know that people in other parts of the world, in the cities are probably getting ready to get dressed for stepping into pubs and clubs to celebrate the countdown to the New year in really fancy ways.

Until next time!

Cheers!!

:))

Hermit Mode On – Part 1

I’ve been telling you people for long that I’m going to write about my experiences in Kalimpong but I’ve not been able to do so owing to a few other things that have kept me occupied for sometime now. I’ve decided to pen it down today. Since this is a travelogue, I’ll do it in installments so that it doesn’t feel dreary.

We had a few options – Kalimpong, Mirik, Gangtok. But we chose to go to Kalimpong so that we could wrap it up sooner to stop at Calcutta atleast for a day(I really wanted to take my friends to my favourite eatery- PeterCat).
We had our Chauffeur, Jigme waiting for us early in the morning of 31st December 2017. Needless to say, it was cold – very cold(I am from the seas, so you know what cold means to us). We had planned on going for White Water Rafting in the Teesta. On our way the car stopped at a small village called Lamahatta for breakfast.

This is the part where I get into what I call my Hermit mode.

Breakfast consisted of flat breads which look almost like pizza breads available in the market – common people there call it Roti – the only difference being they are made over fire(in traditional chulhas).

Don’t mistake it for tandoori!

With it was a dish made of baby potatoes and tomatoes, there was their version of Chole as well. It was a small hut where we had this absolutely wholesome meal you can say. What I noticed was the stack of vegetables in the kitchen – some onions, small potatoes, tomatoes, spinach, some more greens. While there are a lot of pine & fir trees inhabiting the region, food crops are fewer and mostly home grown due to cold temperatures the entire year around. The usual supply of vegetables is from other towns situated at lower altitudes.

We got into our car and even with the heater on it felt cold.
Our next stop was Lover’s Point (I interpreted it as probably a place that people would fall in love with). All the way I learnt about hairpin bends and how to be in control of the car with our Chauffeur friend throwing us valuable tips here and there about the difference in driving in the plains & the hills.

That’s Lover’s Point – on the left is Darjeeling, to the right is Kalimpong. And that’s the Teesta River flowing along.

Until next time!

Cheers!!

:))

Guest Post: Article 19.1.a

Everyone Else Has the Best Titles

This was originally submitted to be a Guest in Jest post but I thought it was a beautiful travelogue and would make an ideal Guest post in its own right.  Please welcome Ayesha from Article 19.1.a

Do the Math!

As a child I must have been the most obedient one in the class, almost close to the most classical definitions of obedience. And quite contrary to the popular choice of subjects, I loved Maths. While my fellow friends would play with Barbie(and all the other doll games) I yearned for someone to play chess with me.

For a very long time I kept trying to understand myself until I found an answer which fitted most of my anxious queries. I realised I love asymmetry. Not just in the form of Mathematics but in real life too. Presumingly that’s also the reason why my “Roti’s” would…

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On point!

On this auspicious Valentine’s Day, let us remember that women are not banks; for you, for family or for society. Women are not banks for storing shame, for storing the family name and honour, for storing your saree-wearing Indian culture or for storing your bloodline.
Want to uphold your family name? Do it yourself!
Want to have shame? Store it between YOUR legs!
Want to uphold culture? Learn how to wear a dhoti.
Don’t make the women in your life do all your work.
Be your own bank.

Originally posted by Rudrani Dasgupta, Programme Officer at Action Aid India

The sketch depicts how so many women store their shame and shy away from opening up owing to very little support from their men/society.

At the same time, we should also stop to thank all those men who stand up to protect & defend their women, And encourage them to enlighten others.

Happy Valentine’s Day while we are still at it.

:))

Happy Valentine’s Day! – because, why not?

Valentine’s Day, also called Saint Valentine’s Day or the Feast of Saint Valentine, is celebrated annually on February 14. Originating as a Western Christian Feast Day honoring one or two early saints named Valentinus. Valentine’s Day is recognized as a significant cultural, religious, and commercial celebration of romance and romantic love in many regions around the world, although it is not a public holiday in any country.

So it is NOT a day to commemorate love for mom, dad, siblings, friends, animals, environment, books/other art forms, etc. Because for all of the above kinds we have separate days like Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and especially Friendship Day. It is to celebrate love between two people that has either ended up in marriage or is going to Or love with a romantic inclination. It is weird how a lot of people in an attempt to be cool keep calling every other thing their Valentine. (Somebody wished me – Happy Valentine my dear friend! – what am I to infer from this? Well, logic tells me this person is totally unaware of the significance, phew!)

Now, a certain good number of people do not believe in celebrating/recognising specific days, which is absolutely okay if it is based on some sensible opinion. For me, I feel it is always better to look into the brighter side of things and the purpose behind commemorating particular days instead of blatantly defying logic just to showcase oneself as a critic-of-the-mainstream. The purpose is very positive indeed – to make everyone feel special on one or the other day. So I don’t see a reason to demean them and argue otherwise illogically.

Actually, it is the societal difference which should cause all the debate. All of these days are meant for the rich to celebrate because when you don’t have food to eat I’m sure you cannot think about fancy days. If your criticism is based on this and if you are truly doing something about it then your words are reasonable – ain’t it?

There’s a third angle to it as well, we don’t always need to spend/waste money to show love(the romantic one). There’s knowledge & creativity at our discretion. That way we can do what we want to do to bridge the societal gap to the extent we can and celebrate the Day as well without wasting Money/Resources per se!

Recently someone told me – I’ll be there with you, dream as big as you can.

This one’s for that someone 😁💝

You(Readers) can totally refute my idea because I will be more than happy to take in some knowledge and positivity.

Until next time!

Cheers!!

Information Courtesy!

The Versatile Blogger Award

Thank you so much Cynthia for nominating me for The Versatile Blogger Award. Do checkout her blogs, they exude a whole lot of hope and positivity! versatile-blogger-award

Rules for the award:

  1. Write 7 facts about yourself
  2. Nominate 15 more Bloggers

Facts about myself:

  1. I find a lot of happiness in the minute details that make up a thing/monument/thought. I believe that every human being should Live to be Happy, at the end of the day that’s all that matters. And a fair amount of objectivity & honesty helps us achieve it! 🙂
  2. Sketching is that one thing that has the power to keep me calm even when I’m really stressed out. Nothing beats it. Screenshot_20180214-181835~2That’s a random sketch 🙂
  3. I am scared of the darkness. And I still believe monsters live under my bed. There has been a situation when my best friend had to travel all the way to my city for a week(she lives thousands of kilometers away) just so that I have someone sleeping beside me in my room.
  4. My little sister means the world to me. There have been moments when I’ve felt that my motherhood started with her and is going to end with her.
  5. I get bored easily, so there have to be new challenges everytime to keep me engaged. I love Maths, then there was a sudden interest in Bio-imaging, then it moved on to Nano-physics, ended up with a job in Information Technology, now my love for history from the early years has gotten rekindled & I really want to do something for the society..there’s a whole bunch of things going on in my mind all the time, especially the urge to do something new! I’ve been asked to counsel aspiring students a number of times but I’ve refused them every single time for fear of transferring my awesomeness(Read:Fickleness with a big F) to little children 😛
  6. I love surprising my parents all the time be it with awards, baking a cake, taking them out, sending gifts over (They’ve also been surprised all the times I’ve changed my vocation/interest :P)
  7. I’m badly insomniac. Don’t mind calling myself the quintessential overthinker. No perks there!

My Nominations:

I love reading your Blogs. Remember you (who is nominated) are under no obligation to write up in response to the nomination. Absolutely upto you to accept it or not!

Majaalifee

The Yarn blabber

thehappylife

Charlie, Interesting World

copypower

Suhaib’s

The Stories In Between

educated unemployed indian

Laura’s Self Development

Ortensia

ASH, The CLOUD CHAMBER

Widowcranky

With a whole lot of love from the other side!

Cheers!!

:))