A Place Of Mixed Emotions

16th Jun 2015

Have traveled to a lot of places from mighty mountains to beautiful beaches and always enjoyed them. A weekend getaway or month long vacation, they all bring a feeling of happiness and rejuvenation, but my last escapade was completely different from all the other travels throughout the world and I couldn't resist penning it down for everyone to enjoy.

I think there is only one place in India which gave me of not two or three emotions at the end but a bag full of them from feeling patriotic and the fight of Azadi to devotion towards all mighty, from sleeping with a stomach full of yummy food to engaging in some retail therapy with all the traditional fashion of two different countries. And the best was all this was felt by me within two days a one single place and not making you guys rack more of your brains with what that special place is, let me put you all to ease by putting down just 8 alphabets and those are AMRITSAR.

The Golden City with people full of love and laughter was my destination for one of the weekends a few months back while spending a few days at the capital city. This city has a huge presence in the Indian History and every Indian wishes to feel it once in their lifetime and I certainly checked it of my list.

Photo of Amritsar, Punjab, India by Shivani Vyas

I'm not a very Desh Bhakt (all the die hard patriotic people please excuse me for it :P) but Amritsar made me feel about my roots and culture and wherever we are today being free and able to talk and do what we want was because of the people who sacrificed their lives at this place. One road which connect two countries who used to be together now are separated by two gates which are created by ourselves. The cement and tar are the same, the road is plain and straight helping people move then why do we have to be in tension with them. The Wagha Border made me realize how proud I can be of my nation and the enthusiasm our soldiers create among us at that place is commendable. Just a few steps and you can see a complete different scenario and I'm really intrigued to explore that one day.

Pain and anger was I felt develop when I visited one of the biggest piece of our history , the Jallianwala Bagh. It made me weep looking at the bullet holes in the walls and the well where thousands of people jumped to save themselves. It made me feel that what happened so many years back should be commemorated and talked and given importance every year. An year old baby to a 70 old grandmother not a single person was given mercy and that moment I felt angry that the people who did this shouldn't be forgiven even now for the deed. Yes people come to rule and destroy but such a manslaughter is heart piercing.

Photo of Wagah, Wagah, Lahore, Punjab, India by Shivani Vyas

But to calm all the feelings evoked by the two place before was the Golden Temple. I always laughed and questioned people who said that when they went to some place they felt peace, because frankly I had never felt that until this time. Sri Harmandir Sahib commonly known as the The Golden Temple is one place I can truly say that would make you feel good and bring a bit of peace to your mind and soul. This place brought the emotions of being in touch with the God. There are so many people to help you through out it feels good but at the same time it made me feel I should also be devoting some time here and provide some sort of service to the visitors. I felt that doing bhajans for hours for chanting mantras will never bring close to the almighty but just providing water to people at that place would certainly do that. The calmness and serenity that place hold even though there might be atleast 50,000 people at a time it a complete bliss and you feel you are connected to God throughout your journey there. I would really say that if you ever want to just visit one place to connect with God , this would be the right one!

Let's get a bit more perky now with the fun things I felt. If you have read my bio you would know I just live to eat and shop and what better place in the country than this place. I'm personally not a big fan of Parathas, but let me tell you the parathas near the Golden Temple or Lawrence Road are simply amazing. Every meal my heart and stomach both felt happy with the food. The super sized Lassi which I could never finish to the mouth watering Kulchas (P.S. I'm feeling hungry right now while telling you all :P) everything will give you a foodgasm! The people who serve you are always so happy and smiling you feel at home and they are always ready to help you and that extra serving just goes somewhere and you don't even realize it. So if you feel happy when you eat then this is for you to visit.

A girl can never have enough shoes and that's what I abide to. This place has so much of culture to two different countries you tend to pamper yourself with some retail therapy. The juttis and mojaris in vibrant colors from pinks to oranges with ghungru to phundas everything fascinated me and to tell you I was feeling like Carrie Bradshaw buying the Manolos or Choos. The small shops have the Desi Punjabi Juttiya also the Pakistani traditonal footwear with all the bling and dazzel and let me tell you it will be a very hard time to pick and choose and after trying about 20 pairs I ended up buying 5 of them. This is not the end of the spree, the place is visited by designers and fashionistas from all over the world for the colorful handiwork called Fulkari. The floral thread works are hard to miss and when I entered the shops to buy, it made me feel a full Punjabi kuddi in those patiala salwar and floral kurtas. Girls if you love to shop till you drop this place should be on your list!!

This is what I wanted to share with the world where just a small place can make you feel everything a human can feel in a lifetime at a time and whether you are an Indian or Foreigner this should be always on your travel list!!