Monday, May 16, 2011

Mussoorie Footprints

Today, I worked from Mussoorie. And it’s the best way to start a work week. Get up, brush, eat breakfast, and then sit down at the desk to work in my pyjamas. My desk is right next to full length windows which look out onto rolling hills populated by lush green trees. When I am bored of sitting at the desk, I take my laptop and go sit in the balcony and work from there, and enjoy the crisp mountain air. I would work from the balcony all day long but practical considerations (also known as weak wifi signal) force me back indoors after a while.   

I’ve been in Mussoorie since last Thursday. After work last Wednesday, Nike and I flew in to Delhi, and then took an overnight train to Dehradun. From Dehradun, it was a 75 minute taxi ride up to Mussoorie. Thus, we landed at Mussoorie on a lovely Thursday morning and checked into one of the guest houses run by the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration, where one of my best friends is currently under training. Our room is large and bright and cheerful, with a clean, spacious bathroom and a large balcony with gorgeous views – all this for the princely sum of Rs.500 per night!

The plan was to work in the room during the weekdays, and spend weekday evenings and weekends exploring the place. Others were skeptical about this – “You’re going to be in Mussoorie and you’ll spend the days indoors working? Yeah right!” – but Nike spent three months working like this while we were travelling across South East Asia, so he’s quite a pro at this, and I simply decided to follow suit. I’ve learnt that it requires a bit of discipline and self-control (both attributes I sorely lack) but with Nike setting a good example, we religiously sat at our desks from morning to evening, got quite a bit of work done, and enjoyed the evenings and the weekends.

I had a lovely time – we largely ignored the tourist spots but explored hidden little corners of Mussoorie thanks to my local friends. A walk along Camel’s Back Road followed by dinner at the Mall. An evening at Dalai Hill, basking in its serene atmosphere. Dinner one night at a lovely stone cottage in Landour. A Saturday morning driving out to Danaulti, and taking in the pretty scenery. An evening at Cloud’s End, soaking in the sunset. A Sunday afternoon spent lazing around with a book in the pine scented woods of Landour. Of course, the best part of the trip was meeting Ruskin Bond and actually chatting up with him! That was quite an experience in itself, and maybe I’ll write a whole post about it some other time.

We were supposed to head back from Mussoorie on Sunday – with me heading home to Hyderabad and Nike off to Ladakh. However, due to circumstances which involved a lot of drama but are too complicated to explain here, Nike ended up having to cancel his Ladakh trip, and we both ended up having to stay in Mussoorie till Tuesday. I whined endlessly about this all of yesterday – think of all the additional cost of cancelling and rebooking our flights and trains and hotels, I have so much work to do, and so on and so forth.

But today, as I started a Monday morning with views of the hills while working at my desk, I was glad that we ended up staying back. It’s a wonderful, refreshing way to start the week, and I ended up getting more work done this way than I would have if I were sitting in office. It also helps that I really enjoy my work – I don’t officially report to anyone since this project is my baby, and I set my deadlines and decide on my own work plans – which is actually much more challenging than if you had a ‘boss’ setting deadlines for you and telling you what to do, but it’s also much more stimulating.

My work for the day is over, and now, after writing this quick post, I shall slip on a jacket, pick up my book, and head out to meet Nike and sit over a hot chocolate and some steaming hot momos. Have a good week ahead everyone!


subbulakshmistoned said...

I am so jealous of you now. :)

smartassbride said...

and let it be recorded that I'm not at all jealous and the reason I have turned green is the chennai weather. Nope, not jealous at all :|

Preeti said...

Sigh. The only reason I am not jealous is because I am also on a vacation, albeit at home, in AC watching back to back Big Bang Theory episodes. That's keeping me calm. Of course, Mussoorie would be a lot better. :|

Ramya said...

@Subbu: You're still in college and live in Bangalore. I'll exchange my week in Mussoorie for either of those two :p

@SAB: Now I am back to dealing with the Hyderabad heat. It's turning me red, brown, black and other such shades. Sometimes purple too, in frustration. You should go to a cool place on a holiday.

@Preeti: Ah nice! Which season are you watching, by the way? If I sit in AC watching BBT and having good food, while not having to work or study, I think I can live. :p

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