Monday, July 28, 2008

Where to find love?

They say you don't find love. Love finds you.

You meet new people, appreciate beautiful faces, admire desired attributes and make friends. Some time you find love among friends and sometime you find a friend in the loved one. Sometime it takes a sight to fall in love and sometimes a whole lifetime to realize that you were in love all the time.

Everyone defines love in his or her way. So when I am asked if I am or have been in love, my question is simple - What is love? For me love is an extreme form of liking. The liking may develop from a long term relationship or instant admiration of a remarkable quality. The point is that if Majnu fell in love with Laila, it was either because they were great friends or (presumably) Laila had 36 DD breasts and a zero figure.

Friday, July 25, 2008

A travel guide for loners

Everyone wants to travel alone at some or the other point of life. Either it is the absence of company or just sheer inquisitiveness to experience the difference. I have had two such excursions and I consider myself capable enough to guide others. Before I enlighten you, let me be prejudiced state that it is a guy thing. So here are few tips.

  1. Travel alone only to popular places with at least some visible crowd. A secluded place is suitable only for couples.
  2. Never plan the details of a trip you are planning alone. A rough idea of place to travel to and approval of leave from office / institution will do. The reason is that there is ample time to think and rethink once you are off. You would like to keep yourself engaged.
  3. An i-pod / mobile with mp3 is a must. A GPRS activated advanced mobile with modest megapixel camera and mp3 player is just perfect for the show.
  4. At time you would like to mix with people around you. There are several ways to do so without feeling awkward.
    1. Ask a group to get together so that you can take a picture. No need to say that targeting group with pretty gals is desirable.
    2. Still better, find a group involved in photo shoots and lend them a hand.
    3. Ask for directions even though you know how to reach a spot. Some tourists enjoy sharing their newly gained information just to show they knew it all the way.
    4. Go all the way in helping a tourist who seeks some information from you. Such interactions keep you engaged.
    5. Target small shops with single keepers. For buying a Kit Kat, they can give you so much local information that even a seasoned guide can not.
  5. Have your own secluded spots to plan further or for reflecting / self instropection / getting philosophical. In fact this is what you came for. The spot can be a bench with a view at the corner of a busy street.
  6. Take a lot of pictures. Ask people to take your picture and enjoy their wierd expressions. You are not going to live there anyway.
  7. Eat at your hotel room. One feels loneliest at restaurants. Keep a pet bottle of coke when you roam around. Add some vodka if you want.
  8. Try to know as much about the place by exploring, chatting with locals, phamphlets etc. Again let me advice that do not gather much information before the trip. Its actually fun knowing facts on the spot.
  9. Write a blog about your experiences when you come back.

Monday, July 14, 2008

A magical weekend


  • On Sunday morning, I took the ropeway to the top of Gun Hill at Mussorie. It was a nice view from telescope point. I ordered for a cup of tea. It started getting foggy and chilly as if Mother Nature was conspiring something. I took my cup and stood at the edge of the hill top. Then it happened, one of nature's most timely gift to me. A fine drizzle. How good it feels to sip a hot cup of tea at a hilltop in a drizzle of rain that bothers no one but leaves you with goosebumps!!!
  • I had ample time with me so I went to see the Bhatta Falls. It is 8 km down from Mussoorie and has all the fantastic features of Kempty Falls minus the crowd. It is also a double fall i.e. one fall of 25 meters is followed by another one of 100 meters. I just wanted to see this rare work of nature. However when I stood in front of the fall, the sprinkles of water were tempting enough to break my resistance. I took off my clothes and jumped in like a child. The warm sun and cold water were a perfect combination. It was sheer pleasure.
  • Patal Bhubaneshwar was spectacular by any evidence of what Mother Nature is capable of. There is a slit-shaped cave enough in size to let inside a middle-aged person. Inside the cave was well lit but alarmingly tortuous stone steps downwards. It takes some body-bending and sweating to reach the bottom of cave which is at around 60 feets. The cave opens up at the bottom. Some intricately shaped structures of limestone are visible. There is a series of caves inside, one after another, almost 100 meters in all. The penultimate cave has something I can never forget in my life. Hundreds of tiny strands of rocks, grey and white in colour, combine to create a giant long haired head. Water is trickling down these strands and the entire structure is shimmering in the low lights of cave. We came out with a more credulous mindset.
  • En route to Almora from Pithoragarh, the tyres of our vehicle got punctured. We were not happy with the development. I now feel quite the opposite. The spot was superb. Down the cliff, the clouds were gathering up. We sat at the rocks on the edge of the cliff and started chatting. It started to rain and we continued to chat. We took photographs in turn and appreciated the fact that our parents wouldn't have allowed us to chat near a cliff some hundreds of meters high while it was raining all the time!!!