Stunned, I walked out, catching up that little blue miracle, that almost dissolved in the blue sky. Shadowed by anguish, lightened by another yellow miracle, a wide smile flashed across my face. Ohh that miraculous butterfly, fluttering in the sky, fluttering like hopes of a young dreamer.
Beep-Beep came to the noise of the bus, and I suddenly woke up from my dreamy world, realizing I’m out with my friends, away from the hustle of life, on a college trip to Shillonbagh. Me and my stupid group of friends, friends whom I met just 2 months ago, who’ve now become my family; it was my first trip with them. We started early in the late evening around 8pm. This was the first trip where I realised that trips with friends are so much fun, but at the same time they are so tiring that you don’t even get enough time to rest, because friends are those people in your life who won’t let you sleep, and of course you can’t control yourself but blurt out all your feelings and thoughts in front of them. Especially when you make new friends in college, with whom you have a lot to share. Even four nights of the trip wasn’t enough for this.
From dancing in the bus, sharing food, watching cars moving, and of course, clicking random pictures to tease each other, we enjoyed the whole night, when suddenly at 3am we realized that we’ve started off with the mountain. Ohh, those scattered powder-puffed clouds, crisp mountain air, snow-clad trees, everything seemed to be so much exciting. Mountains are so thrilling that you don’t feel like sitting on the bus, but you feel like walking on the steep roads, enjoying open, spaces and dark skies, the moon veiled in haze, chilly cold night. The bus stopped for a while and most of us got down because even sitting idly tires you. The sky was deeper and stars were brighter, everything was so still and calm that we could hear our own voice echoing. Though it was exciting but scarring at the same time.
Everything was pre-planned, from food to all the exercises that we had to perform. We had to live in camps for the first night, and as soon as I heard the word ‘camping’, I imagined it to be a proper camping where we will go out, put up our own camps, make our food ourselves; but no, much to my disappointment , they were pre-built camps, and much to my surprise, they had attached bathrooms, supplied with hot water. They were none less than a hotel. Though it disenchanted me at first the delicious food covered it all. And how can one forget all those funny and exciting moments, when you don’t have a shampoo and compelled to wash your hair with a dove soap(as suggested by one of my friends), when you don’t have a moisturizer and compelled to use body lotion on your face,and the most irritating part, when you forget to bring your toothbrush.
The most arousing and refreshing part was the adventurous activities that we did, like rappelling, abseiling, river crossing and much more.
Nothing could’ve been better than the night trek. It was a moonless night and we weren’t allowed to switch on our phones or any light, the only support that we had was the instructor who was beheading all of us and we walked behind him like the coaches of the train. It seemed as if everything was swallowed by darkness, so much so that we couldn’t even see the road than we were walking on. Out of our five senses, only one sense was working and that was hearing;
hearing different kinds of noises, shrill voice of a woodpecker probably, scratching noises and everything seemed so dead, so much so that even these voices were swallowed by emptiness. Thanks to my devilish imagination, that a tree seemed to be a witch, a stone seemed to be a wolf, and what not? After this electrifying night trek, we had a bonfire, the only light that was killing darkness that night. It was like the cherry on the cake, because after all the devilish experiences came to the ghostly stories, and the result was, we couldn’t sleep that night.
After this, we went to a resort, where four people shared one room and those lovely soft mattress beds were like balm on our tired bodies. We saw chail palace, played games there and chilled out a lot. Though we were tired, walking all day long, without any sleep, with those scary thoughts still at the back of our mind;we sat in one room, and not much to surprise, six people(who else, my stupid friends) lied down on one bed, legs on top of each other(I still wondered we met just two months back), and conversed till 5am despite knowing that we have to go down for breakfast at 8am next morning, and we will not get breakfast any after that. Uhhh,
another sleepless night.
Next day we went to Shimla, explored mall Road over there, and shopping is of course great fun. Oh, I can’t forget those delicious pancakes. Nutella and banana, which seemed to be a strange combo at the starting, turned out to be the most delicious pancake of all. Small little experiences which seem so funny now, but are worth it because they could have been experienced there only, and of course the pictures that you click become the memories of all times. From getting scared of monkeys, blowing off dandelions, running around and playing games like ice water, blowing off bubbles; everything was just so perfect, intoxicating enough for this little heart to live like a child again.
The last part of this journey, which nobody wanted to end, was the toy train. The whistling of the train, the seats, and of course the tunnels, everything was so much impelling. Oh, how can I forget the longest tunnel, tunnel no? 33, which is supposed to be haunted, and honestly speaking to some extent it was. We all could hear some scratching noises, and that was the time when at one point we wanted the tunnel to get over as soon as possible and at the same time wanted this journey to go on forever. How can one forget those beautiful moving mountain ranges that we saw from the train as if waving goodbye at us, those muscular peaks, those deep valleys, that clouded sky, that land full of songs, everything seemed to be just so intoxicating? And much to our disappointed, because we never wanted to go back, we reached Kalka.
We boarded our bus and sat in our seats, almost dead after so many sleepless nights, but still wanted to talk. It seemed as if this is the last night that we’re left with and we won’t meet after this. This is what journey does to you, makes your friends your family. This time our tired body overpowered our excited mind, and all of us fell asleep, and the next morning when we woke up, we found ourselves in our home city, our Delhi, and could see our busy schedule calling us. I can never forget those mountain ranges, that land which breathes magic, that place where there is music even in the leaves of the trees.