A Sunday. 012 ( TAPMI‘s hyped, Literary Committee hosted, week-long ‘fiesta’ ( not the Jay Z type) ) was on. Surprise, surprise; no classes. No Guest lectures. And we have a day that we don’t know what to do with. Of course assignments, projects and deadlines are there but we keep learning cramming all that into an existing busy schedule, and how not to waste a perfectly beautiful Sunday? Road Trip off course.
I get a call late Saturday night from two very persuasive girls: “You HAVE to come, and yeah arrange a bike and if possible your camera.” I make the initial excuses, academics, ManipalBlog posts that I have to write, sleep deficit to catch up on, etc . But like I said , very persuasive so I acceded.
But it was close to 1 o’clock and they planned a trip by 6: 30 am. So I decided to make a grand sacrifice and not sleep. Out came Dell XPS and PES 2012 and at 6:30 am, all sweaty and grimy from a hard day’s football, I call one of them up. I get a bleary- eyed response : “We will get ready in 10 minutes” Bah! Like any girl ever can.
So we set out at 9:30 am. 9 participants. 4 girls, 5 guys. 4 bikes and an Activa. The first part of the drive was uneventful, except that the Great Western Ghats Roads really fired up the josh levels . There is something so mesmeric about broad, black, glistening roads amidst deep rich brown and lush green and towering , majestic trees. The magic literally started with the rains. At a point where we take a left from the main road after Karkala, the rains started. Not gradually, not a faint drizzle but the usual Manipal Rain : Full ON!! and for the entire trip of multiple hours, I daresay it receded even a little.
This turned out to be one of those trips where the usage of the camera was minimal but the views were so majestic, it was so totally worth it. I remember screaming out adjective after lofty – adjective just attempting to describe what we witnessed.
The rain, the greenery, the roads, the quaint countryside, it was all so… satisfying. People say India is beautiful, and I agree half heartedly, and think of lip service, public promotion and the touristy highlights. But this, this was something else. There were no monuments, no landmarks, it was just raw beauty, just lying there, like a gold mine with veins exposed and having an almost inexhaustible supply of beauty to offer. Simply endless, the more we went in, the more we were fascinated by it. The spiraling upwards roads ( how do these people maintain the roads to such good degree of treadability? ) , the Pandora-like dense vegetation, the sheer majesty of the vista that unfurled itself from time to time was like a real time Sony Bravia HD TV commercial. So clear so pristine, so detailed, so rich in its colours and variety.
At one point , it became too much to handle, We stopped, parked the bikes and I took off my rain-wear and just sat down to take it all in, the rolling plains, the august mountains, the welcoming greenery and the mysterious clouds. all of them spinning this incredibly beautiful symphony which even the most ignorant of humans will not be able to deny.
Soon we were in the realms , the Kingdom of the clouds. The road ahead was like our life, vague, nebulae, unfolding by the minute and I could feel my co-passenger melting in her seat and clinging on to me , slightly hyperventilating at what she saw around her. We all went philosophical and in a forgiving mood and I recollect at one stage , we waited for the rest to catch up, we just sat on the road, which had water flowing down and the breeze spun up a frenzy of dervishes of water and so many similarly stunning imagery that will forever be my bench mark for beauty of Nature. I have been lucky enough to have traveled abroad and travelled there itself and I wax eloquent about it to my friends out here. This here was really stiff competition.
Can’t wait for the next one.