Wednesday, June 23, 2010

In Which We Go On Holiday

So I just got back from my weeklong holiday in Himachal Pradesh. Nike and I flew to Delhi, met up with some friends there, and the next morning took the Shatabdi Express to Kalka. From Kalka, we hired a taxi for 8 days, and drove up to Naggar, which is 30kms before Manali. We stayed at the lovely Naggar Castle, went white water rafting, and hiked in the surrounding hills and had a lovely time.

We then went to Manali for two days. I have nothing good to say about Manali, I’m afraid. It was crowded, noisy and dirty. We went to Rohtang Pass – in fact, even trekked up some way. We went to Solang Valley but couldn’t go paragliding because of the rains, but we did go zorbing. And we went around the town itself.

We then spent two days at the Great Himalayan National Park, and that was the highlight of our trip. We trekked 12kms into the park with a porter and guide, and set up tent there for the night, and then trekked back to the village the next day. After that we spent two days at a home stay run by an elderly couple in a village called Ghiyagi in Banjaar Valley – literally the middle of nowhere. There we took a lot of pleasant walks.

We drove back via Jalori Pass with its fantastic views, and stopped at Shimla for a couple of hours. Shimla was a surprise to me – it was very pretty and I think I would love to go back to it sometime, but in the winter, when its quiet and cold. We then drove down to Kalka, took the overnight train and reached Delhi after a hot and uncomfortable journey. Delhi was hot and uncomfortable too, but I ate  a lot of good food, and met some very good friends, so it wasn’t all bad.

I came back home to Bangalore at 1 in the night on Sunday! I had a fantastic holiday, but it is good to be home too. The weather is nice and balmy and very pleasant, with the sun barely making an appearance. A project I’m working on has started from Monday, and I’m rather excited about it. Lots of things on my to-do list for the next one week, so I’m going to be very busy.

The other big news is that I’ve FINALLY started reading LOTR. Yes, I know! About 10 years ago, I started reading it, but I found the prologue unbelievably boring, so I gave up on it. And no, I can’t just leave the prologue and get on with the story – I’m surprisingly anal that way. Anyway, after much persuasion from friends, I decided to give the book another shot, and took it along with me on the holiday. I’ve finished the first two books ‘The Fellowship of the Ring’, and really enjoyed it so far. I’ve just stared on ‘The Two Towers’.

So now I’m quite sleepy, and am craving to get back to my book and bed, so till later then!

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