How do you feel when you spend one entire hour without your cell phone? Tough question. Because no matter how hard you try, you eventually land up scrolling the screen. I spent 4 days without my cellphone (well, kind of) since I used it for taking pictures.
I visited Triund way back in October, 2016 when I was a little less lazy as you can probably make out that I am posting this after almost 3 months and now (in next year altogether) in 2017, wow. This trip was a trivial thought of one of my friend’s friend Prateek, which later turned into a conscientious task which needed to be accomplished since we had no option but to go there and have fun, look how I manage to give away a very lame reason. From convincing my parents to deciding what all places to visit and what all we should carry, I experienced literally everything of what adulthood is all about, be it carrying heavy backpacks 24*7, trekking for 4 hours straight, back ache, muscle pain, cursing Prateek every time when I ran out of breath while trekking and what not on this trip. I have amalgamated what all I remember in a day-wise sequence of what this 4 day trip to Triund, Himachal Pradesh was all about with my three friends Kamal, Ayushi and Prateek.
Day 1 (13 October, 2016)
We had our buses booked which we had to board from somewhere at sharp 6 p.m. Obviously, we weren’t able to find our bus in one go. Buses were standing on either side of the highway, we crossed the freaking road twice expecting mercy from vehicles to let us cross the same. My friend, Kamal is so fainthearted that it took us almost 15 minutes to get to the other side of the road. We were howling, laughing and shouting at each other while crossing that goddamn highway. So, we got to the other side and didn’t find our bus which meant that we were initially on the right side but nobody ceased to check the buses parked on our side, even once. We repeated the same procedure and embarrassed ourselves yet again but finally got to our side, found our bus and relaxed our butts on our respective seats. We had fun in the bus while covering our journey from Delhi to Mcloedganj (approximately 10 hours) which went swiftly since we were the ones who didn’t sleep the whole night, considering the fact that we were too busy insulting each other.
Day 2 (14 October, 2016)
We had preplanned our second day (basically first, because we started our journey at 6 in the evening on 13th) that we’ll get one hotel, rest ourselves till 12 noon and will start our trek by 12:30 but nothing sort of that happened. We got into our rooms and didn’t leave it till the very last moment, until it was Prateek who got all paranoid and started banging our doors as loud as he could, we had no choice but to leave our beds and start whatever we were there for. We got ready and did everything in haste. When we were on our way to Dharamkot from where we actually started our trek, I wasn’t able to bring myself back to reality that I was actually on a trip. Like, a full fledged trip where I am all by myself, no one to look after me except my friends and I am actually one of those cool kids (Grins in the background). The thing apart from it’s natural habitat that I really like about that place was it’s people. Everybody knew everybody and people weren’t just mundane strangers to each other, who pass smile when they walk past. People actually know what everyone is up to like, they actually talk and are familiar with the names of all the people inhering there which I found really fascinating because we didn’t get to see this in big cities where everyone is blindly and selfishly competing in a rat race which is slowly taking them to towards their own ruin. Anyway, I really don’t relate to the idea of big cities. So yes, we reached Dharamkot and at that point, our real trek started and it was 7 Kilometers from there to the peak of Triund, a distance I barely walk in one go even on the plains but I was considerate that I could make it, but I never was aware that I was going to regret this lame consideration of mine. After walking few meters which felt like I don’t know how many kilometers to me, I knew I was fucked. I dragged my limbs and collected my soul from somewhere near the sheepishly lying carcass of my body which lacked vitality, self confidence and all in all, a life. I somehow (this ‘somehow’ is exactly not the word I should be using to describe all the hard work that I put in order to reach that freaking top) managed to trek myself safe to the top and didn’t leave a single minute to curse Prateek for planning this trek of thousands of kilometers. While I am typing all this description, I in a way feel happy for all my crass words which he tolerated, I acting all hissy fit by making Kamal carry my heavy bag of which I am thankful and on sharing small small talks about how dumb can guys possibly get, with Ayushi.
When we reached the top, every drop of sweat was literally worth the view which we got to see from there. I watched the sunset and the moonrise simultaneously which was nothing but bliss. We roamed a bit here and there inbreathing all that we could, got our tents and relaxed ourselves. It was around 6 p.m. that it started to get really cold and unfortunately we had sheets as our blankets which were of no use as it was freaking 7℃. We used to collect in one tent making it little less impossible to survive at that temperature. That night, as far as I can make out was the longest night of my life. Sun was is no mood of rising and moon was in no mood of setting. Basically, both of them had this pact sorted that they are going to make us suffer in that cold which was in a way funny since we keep moving from one tent to the other and exchanging blankets which helped not even a bit. So, that’s how our second day went.
Day 3 (15 October, 2016)
Finally, we saw what we desperately wanted to see. The sun, obviously. We had everything planned as usual that we’ll trek our way back and take one hotel and won’t move out of our rooms till the next morning. As soon as we saw the sun, Kamal got all hyperactive and started bugging all of us to start the trek, I don’t know what was the matter with him that made him so paranoid to trek back, I think he was letting out the past day’s frustration (maybe? But then he is Kamal. What more do you expect?) After a little eating and a lot of obnoxious posing and clicking pictures, we decided to trek down and so we did. It took us probably less than half of the time that we took to reach the top, less than three hours I guess or maybe two. All four of us just trekked down so fast with more walking and less talking and taking rests. When we finally got down, we got ourselves one hotel and relaxed all afternoon and evening, I still remember that feeling when my back and everything touched that soft as baby’s bottom-bed. After finally having the sleep we all longed for, we headed out to go about the place and eat something. After a lot of walking (AGAIN!) we finally found this shady eating place and treated our stomachs, quite properly. Also, we met a bunch of people (complete strangers) from our city on our way to hunt for food. The people we met aren’t one of those described in travelling books because one, they weren’t even near classy. Two, one of them almost flirted with Ayushi which she didn’t get (Sweet girl, aw) and he was so stupid he told her that he tried on her which was followed by awkward vibes and void expressions from her side. I wasn’t able to take that any more because it’s next to illegal to laugh at people on their face. So we went back to our hotel and slept through the third night.
Day 4 (16 October, 2016)
It was preternatural that day, as far as I remember for reasons I wasn’t aware of. I woke up around 10 in the morning with a light headache, it was weird because I didn’t do anything tiring or something which required effort at all, the day back. Anyway, we got ready in a hurry (yet again) and checked out of hotel around 12. Prateek as usual had the day all sorted and planned. We visited Tsuglagkhang Buddhist Temple which was surreal and calm like one of those tallest trees of chilly winter morning. The temple is surrounded by Pine and Maple trees which shed their leaves every now and then colouring the pathways all yellow and green. Photography isn’t allowed inside the temple but there is a beautiful ground in front of it for that sake. The ground is neatly maintained and has a fresh vibe to it. The temple is somewhere down the hill so you have to travel all the way down in order to get there. Since it is in the main market, you’ll get to see crowd there unlike the trek. The temple has two floors and the view from second is divine since all you can see are humming birds, snowcaps in a distance and beautiful green hills. It has a big statue of Buddha which is built on a large platform for all sorts of ritual offerings, on the first floor which covers the basic purpose of the temple i.e. praying. After the temple, we visited the local market which was neatly lined on either side of the road which was going up the hill. There was a cafe in the market itself where I had the privilege of eating the delicious american baked chocolate pie. I don’t remember reading the name of the cafe and I am absolutely hating myself for that and literally sulking that it was the best chocolate pie I have ever had in my life so far and I didn’t even read the name of the cafe, why am I like this? I used to appreciate art. What happened to me then? Anyway, the cafe was very welcoming and served freshly made shakes and cakes and pastries and pies. I wasn’t able to decide what to eat until I saw chocolate pie and Kamal was too busy crushing over the girl who was serving there. No matter how hard I try, I can’t deny the fact that she was really pretty and I still remember every bit of her face (if not the cafe’s name), how she was making blueberry punch while speaking to some lady who was probably her mother. She was one of those girls about which travellers write poetry. She was very simple, calmed and poised. She had brown hair tied neatly in a pony tail, smiling dark grey eyes and rose pink complexion, perfectly complimenting her. she was everything perfect and I completely adored her for an hour and I still do. When the sun was about to set we walked our way up the bus stand and waited for the bus to come.
Day 5 (17 October, 2016)
We were back and reached Delhi on time and all I could remember about the last night was how we never wanted to go back. How we desperately wanted the bus to literally throw us out and like, abandon us somewhere there, between the hills. We were moping in the metro station about the whole trip and in that moment all I could think about and probably the vivid-est memory was my first morning on 14th October when I woke up in the middle of the night around 4 a.m. and all could see was a sky full of twinkling stars beaming right at me. Since the bus was moving up the hill, the sky was pretty near to us as compared to the nights spent on plains. I still can’t get over that night and will continue to do so, it was that enthralling. After spending almost an hour in the metro station we hugged and bid each other kind of teary goodbyes and I think that was it, that was Triund my first ever (kind of) solo trip for me.
Note : Please find the pictures from my trip below. Check out more @prateeksngh867 on Instagram.