A Wonderland for Social Distancing #SecondHome

Photo of A Wonderland for Social Distancing #SecondHome by Vinay Chelwani

I heard the word ‘Pandemic’ after ages while searching for some documentary on Netflix a few months back, and now it feels like it might be the most used word, across the globe along with Covid-19 and social distancing.

One of the best things about being home quarantined is that I finally have time to do things which I always wanted to, like spending time with my friends and family over the phone, watching a lot of movies and reflecting upon the amazing travel experiences that I have had in the last few years.

The whole point of traveling to me is to explore new places, cultures, cuisines, etc., which involves being outdoors, but if I really have to think of an ideal place where I would like to practice social distancing, then that would be ‘Maya Home-stay’.

Photo of A Wonderland for Social Distancing        #SecondHome 1/7 by Vinay Chelwani
Maya Home-stay

The beautiful abode is located at just 10 kilometres from home to the Dalai Lama, Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh in a small village named ‘Chari’. The picturesque bungalow is located amidst the lush green farms with snow capped mountains at the back and a private garden at the front. The best part of the house was the Vegetable farm where we used to pluck fresh vegetables and use them for cooking.

Photo of A Wonderland for Social Distancing        #SecondHome 2/7 by Vinay Chelwani
Vegetable Garden

The owners of the house, Mr. and Mrs. Rana were staying at the ground floor along with their dog, Roosie and I was staying on the first floor with my friends.

Photo of A Wonderland for Social Distancing        #SecondHome 3/7 by Vinay Chelwani
Morning view from the balcony

A typical day at Maya Home-stay would have started with the sweet sound of birds chirping from the lychee tree and the first thing which I should have needed is not the morning tea, but some vitamin D and some warmth from the rising sun, to beat the morning chills. The views of the snow-capped mountains accompanied with breakfast and a cup of ginger tea would have made my morning. The next few hours I would have spent on shedding some calories while playing badminton or playing with Roosie at the lawn.

Photo of A Wonderland for Social Distancing        #SecondHome 4/7 by Vinay Chelwani
Roosie & me

The swing placed on the lawn would have been an ideal workstation to work from home while sipping the lemon coriander tea, freshly made from the organic farm on weekdays and the plan for weekends would have been reading a book, watching a movie, or penning down my thoughts. I would have also done some short solo hikes nearby the house.

Photo of A Wonderland for Social Distancing        #SecondHome 5/7 by Vinay Chelwani
Short hike nearby the house

The enticing smell of ghee seasoning added to the dal would have made me sit with Rana uncle and listen to his stories of service to Indian Army over the lunch. Embracing the beauty of a sunset in the mountains would have called for a cup of hot coffee and some warm clothes.

Photo of A Wonderland for Social Distancing        #SecondHome 6/7 by Vinay Chelwani

I would have learned those delicious delicacies of Himachal Pradesh, which Rana Aunty used to cook during my visit, followed by arranging logs of wood to start the bonfire and get a few more hours under the sky full of stars. I could not have said no to accompany Rana uncle in having a glass of Rum sometimes which he used to get from the army canteen, to beat the freezing cold.

Photo of A Wonderland for Social Distancing        #SecondHome 7/7 by Vinay Chelwani
Bonfire at the house

The place had all the ingredients, I am looking for in this lockdown. If I have to describe my 6 days experience of staying at this place in a single word, then it would be ‘homely’.

Please share your views in the comments section and follow me to read my upcoming blog on MY LAST TRIP BEFORE THE LOCKDOWN.

Cost per night for 2 BHK- 2500 INR

Link: airbnb.co.in/mayahomestay