Aroma of paratha –grandma’s kitchen (Cliché ! cliché ! but true).
Morning tea --Dad.
Amitabh Bachhan style of dancing---Parul , my friend.
Maggi noodles----Tungnath (temple)
Tungnath is one of the five famous Shiva temples (Panch Kedar) of Garhwal. This trek makes one of my favourite memories:
To escape the hot weather of Dehra and monotony of the long days of summer vacations I planned a trip. Somehow I could assemble/ agree 10 people (aged 5 to 40) More people meant more jokes,more songs, more fun.
Started from Rishikesh we drove up along the river Ganga. Reached Srinagar for lunch at a roadside dhaba. Couldn’t resist a nap after the food, though I wanted to enjoy the scenic drive. The song ‘Daiyya, Daiyya re’ (film dil ka rishta, one of driver’s Special) was repeatedly played by the Tata sumo driver.
When woke up, I found myself at a place where Jim Corbett had killed the man eater of Rudraprayag who killed 100s of people in this area. Our guide/guardian Natraj, an avid reader, told us many stories about the tigers, like a tiger always attacks its prey from his back. It walks so stealthily that the victim is unaware of its presence.
Night halt at Syalsaur in log-huts on the bank of Mandakini was a wonderful experience. After 3 hours of drive we were at Chopta, the base camp for our destination.
The trek starts from here. The path was well constructed with Shale rocks. After a while appeared the lush green meadows and in front of us was the breathtaking view of the snow covered peaks of Himalayas. Natraj who visited this place during winters told that he saw the pugmarks of …a tiger, when the trek was covered with the thick snow.
Panting, tired and damn hungry, we reached Tungnath temple. After Darshan we had Maggi and aloo Paratha at the only Dhaba out there. Yes, Maggi noodles still remind me of that place. Time to go back but the submit Chandrasila was still a km away. Others returned to Choptaa and the newlyweds (Nuts and wife) and I started for Chandrashila.
This one km was a bit tough but once we reached the top, it was a great feeling. While coming down we spotted a tea shop. Had tea and chatted with the shop owner and his wife. Time was flying away and we knew that it will take at least one hour to reach the base camp. Climbing down was not that easy as I had thought.
Now it was pitch dark. In my mind only one thing was there..Tiger! Attacks from the back…Pug marks…Though we didn’t utter a word about it.
Yes I was scared!
Reached Chopta safely. But dusk still reminds me of a tiger sometimes…