Friday, March 18, 2011

Dehradun and Beyond

Just got back from a trip to a place I have never been - Dehradun. The biggest driving force for me to go there was to see the grandeur of the Himalayas, even from far, and I set off to Dehradun. Apart from wandering around Dehradun and trying to spot places that Ruskin Bond has so delightfully mentioned in his novels and other books, I also travelled to places like Chakrata which gave me the first and rather distant views of snow capped Himalayan peaks, Haridwar, Rishikesh, Mussoorie, Dhanolti (which had far more awesome views of the snow capped peaks), Chamba and even a peek at the awesomeness of the Tehri dam.

The mountain air, the flora and fauna, the blue skies, the birds, the tranquility, the peace that seeps in at Haridwar and Rishikesh, the steep walks of Mussoorie make you aware that these places are not to be visited as places to be ticked off. They have to be imbibed, stayed in, sat quietly, walked through until the experience becomes part of you.

One can walk for days in those mountains, along roads lined with the sangwan, pine, sal trees that seem to touch the sky. One can sit on the banks of the Ganges at Haridwar and Rishikesh all day and just seep in the experience. One can breathe in the mountain air, try to name the birds and plants and flowers and it could take a lifetime.

And not to forget that I was also keen to meet Mr. Ruskin Bond while in Mussoorie and did get to meet him for a delightful half hour as well. More on all this later, as I catch my breath in the plains after the rush in the mountains.


Rajendra said...

Did he say, "My name is Bond" in the style made famous by his namesake?

Harimohan said...

No, but he is great fun. Will write about my encounter with him soon.

Dr. Seven said...

Very interesting encounter!