when you are a travel industry entrepreneur travelling related to the business is a bonus ! I was rung by a friend of mine for a meeting in is propety in Munnar, the Ecotones. The property is a wonderfully maitained, nature friendly, adventure packed, self-sustained resort. So this time for a change i planned to travel by the KSRTC bus. And as usual, i chose the time of travel to be at night ! i went for a movie at night 10.30 and left the movie before the climax for boarding bus. I was waiting infront of LULU Mall and a the bus passed by me even after i waved to stop by. i asked an auto driver to help me board that bus and as in movies my auto wala set off in pursuit of the speeding bus ! Thanks to the road condition of kerala highway that the bus had to hit brakes and then within few moment the auto had blocked the bus. i put a 100 rupee note in auto bro's pockets and boarded the bus. I felt invincible eventhough i knew that if the auto driver wanted he could have dragged a little longer and take much bigger amounts! It was a misunderstanding of mine to believe there will be plenty of seats available to sit in. I had a bus where even on the floor people were sleeping in a crouched position on the floor. All my adrenaline and thrill came to a pause thinking about the luxury and freedom of a bike and a car ! But i thought being an explorer, a traveller i need to have all kinds of experience. After around half an hour when i was done with my observation, i understood that bus had a variety of people from different lifestyles. From a group of boys from Calcutta who had come to kerala for a budget trip, a family of a grandpa and two grandchildren who were going back to their hometown after their parents passed away in mangalore, workers who were going back to their home for two days holiday (saturday they take day-off and sunday by evening they return back to Kochi) and a group of labourers from Odisha their wives and children going for a Munnar trip ! i could see all types of people travelling regardless their way of lifestyle or situations. after a few hours of travel atlast the bust started to climb the hilltops. i had been standing for the last 3 hours with a backpack and a camera bag between the legs and my shoulder started to pain. A 14 year old, Tanzeel, was resting his head on my legs and sleeping to with comfort and i ddint want to disturb the young lad cause he reminded me of my younger brother. Suddenly the boy who was sleeping peacefully woke up cause one of the guys from of the Culcutta group kicked and asked him to stand up instead of sleeping cause tanzeel hit his head on the guys legs ! As usual the guys thought the boy didnt understand hindi and started abusing using words. And they woke up the real brother in me ! they were starteled to hear a Malayali guy abusing them back in hindi ! the bus stopped near adimaly at 4.30 for a 30 mins halt. i climbed down the bus with tanzeel and his grandpa went to the fast food centre and ordered a black coffee. Me and tanzeel's grandpa soon became friends and he was smoking my marlboro and me his dinesh beedi ! It was a wonderful feeling, meeting new peoples, different cultures and languages. the bus was about to leave and i was happy to board a less crowded bus this time. Tanzeel offered me his seat but i decided to enjoy the mountain climb, curly hairpins and handed over my backpack to him. i stood near the steps and felt awesomly refreshed to inhale the cold fresh air ! It's moments like these which awakens deeper thoughts in you, may not help you forget the sorrows then but surely they do help to heal later when you have arrived back at home. That's travel, it has longlasting effects and sometimes may leave long lasting impressions in your life totally. never did i felt the tiredness of have been standing since the last 4 hours after a hectic day in the office. All my heart craved was the ultimate feeling that my trips give me. I was very lucky to view the morning sunrise beyond the hills. By 6.30 i was in Munnar town and standing beside the highway, clueless as to how to start my further travel. I rang My friends and they picked me up. I was soon welcomed in their resort Ecotones Munnar and after getting refreshed our meeting commenced. Morning times are always perfect for meetings cause everyone is fresh and just beginning their day. After a few hours of conversations, presentations and documentation atlast the meeting came to an end and my adventure trip was about to start. I walked thorugh the property and was lost in the beauty of nature the resort provided. We decided to go for birding in Thattekad in their Thar and soon i was on the way for a birding trip. As we had access and clearances to every forest in India (part of the job) we could just explore the denser trails. We were too lucky to spot a few few endemic species of birds like frogmouth and others like the hornbill, flycatcher and butterflies on the way. We soon reached the inner sides of the forests and the real adventure off-roading began. We were driving through thick forest trails and soon the adrenaline started kicking in. As we reached our trekking spot we started and came back after sweating a lot on the hard-trek route. Thats the favourite past-time of an adventure junkie like us. and soon we resumed our drive throught the forest and had lunch from the local settlement of tribals. The thali didnt had varieties of curries and sabji's but everything the boiled rice, pickled tender mangoes were divine. It's like our usual routine when i have a meeting in Munnar. Soon they dropped me off at the bus stop and i proceeded to Cochin in bus. This time I was blessed that i was the lone traveller in the bus and sat luxuriously. By night i had reached back home with lots of memories and newer spottings. When i got in for a shower, i saw my gifts from mother nature to me. The usual thing to happen during a trek. "Dead leeches who had sucked enough blood for their lifetime and died" ! I was content and slept peacefully feeling blessed.
I am a travel entrepreneur and an adventure enthusiast, having lots of work related pressures and deadlines but, mother nature, she is the greatest healer of all time. Regardless the depth of the wound, she cures and induces freshness, motivates you to do more !!!
May be the article is too long, but believe me, there is lot more to be told ! ;)