Solo travelling may be a bliss, but travelling in a group has its own joys. I met five of my group-mates who were from different countries of Europe, at Rishikesh. All of them but Ami were into Hinduism and Yoga, which brought them closer to me. My trip began well when Matte suggested shopping from the crowded market of Rishikesh. She took a long time to find a kurta, loose and long enough to cover her knees. She took me to a gem jewellery shop and also bought herbal products of Patanjali and Himalaya. Actually I felt like a foreigner and she a native.
Devprayag is 46 miles from Rishikesh Which is on the way to Guptkashi, our destination for the day. It is a place where the two rivers meet and then is called the Ganga. Alaknanda from Badrinath and Bhagirathi from Gomukh, 18 km from Gangotri temple. I had seen this amazingly colourful confluence from the the road many times before, but never thought of walking down to take a dip. How much the company you keep can change the way you look at things. I walked down, touched and heard the holy water roaring. I came back carrying that sound and sight in my heart
My white companions were prepared for the holy dip at the confluence. Then I knew the urgency behind buying the long kurtas in Rishikesh. No way they wanted to temper with the sanctity of the place. Thank god they have not seen us bathing at Sangam during kumbh.
By the confluence of Alaknanda and Bhagirathi stands an ancient temple. Lord Rama meditated here after killing Ravana, the demon king.
We continued our journey and reached Kedar Camp which was my our abode for the next seven days.