I haven't visited the Shadows in a while because I was visiting some place else. A tiny sleepy hill station on the outskirts of Mumbai (don't know if 180Km qualifies as outskirts) was our destination for a well deserved post exam holiday. It is called Bhandardara.
We went there to have fun and so we did to the fullest - climbing the tallest peak of Maharashtra, trekking among the clouds, catching frogs, going shoe-hunting when it is pitch dark, playing the most hilarious game of Bluff, getting caught in fog so thick that it could hide an elephant, picnicking near waterfalls and much more.Nonetheless, I am not going to make this post a journal. I am going to describe three moments which made me feel at peace with myself like never before.
The first one came when we were sitting at a step on our trek up the Kalsubhai summit. We were half way up having crossed rickety ladders and slippery trails. At this point, I decided to take a break. I sat on a rock in admiration of the view. A waterfall found its way from the peak to the valley through stony steps in a green canvas. The sun was extremely playful hiding behind the clouds from time to time, like a mother playing peekaboo with her baby. Sometimes the clouds would hover over me giving me the feeling of sitting on a cushion of clouds. They felt cold and moist. However it was not long before they were carried away by a gale. Somewhere in the middle of all this, I could hear a sound. Actually, sounds, two to be precise. One of a bird whistling periodically, the other of my heart beat.
The second one was while driving around the town in an antique Mahindra 404 jeep (the kinds you see policemen driving in the hindi movies of the 70s n 80s). While driving back from Konkankada (a point which is supposed to give you a overwhelming view of a valley, but we only saw fog and mist), we reached a stretch of freshly washed road which was covered by a beautiful canopy of lush green leaves. You wish that all roads were like that. No obstructions, no traffic, just you and the beautiful weather. I had the company of my friends and their company made the ride even better. I wish the journey went on and on forever. I had just forgotten all my troubles and responsibilities for a few minutes.
The third one came while driving back from Bhandardhara. My sister spotted a beautiful sunset surrounded by grey clouds and light rain. My friend had just mentioned that these were ideal conditions for a rainbow and at the same moment, it appeared in the sky out of no where. I had seen a rainbow only once before this but it was neither as beautiful nor did I have the time to observe it so closely. It took us some time but soon we realised there was not one, but two rainbows together (the second one is not visible in this picture I clicked). It was not like the VIBGYOR coloured rainbow I drew in my drawing books ( I am pathetic at aesthetics). It just blended in with the surroundings so beautifully, giving them a tint of its constituent colours. It looked like a stairway to the sky. It was a crown for the hills of Bhandardhara. It made our trip so much more complete!
Now I know what they mean when they say 'the little joys of life.'