It was a beautiful morning and I had woken up even before the sun had fully emerged from behind the reddish horizon. With no commitments and it being a Sunday, I decided to do some sight seeing in this new city. So my next stop was Google search engine on my chrome browser. The search results showed up a lot of articles and I was confused regarding which place to pick for my cycling excursion. But obviously, I had to go to the images tab on my search results to make a decision. It was then when I laid my eyes on that beautiful but eerily named place called Patal Pani. What an unusual name for a beautiful waterfall. The name evoked a sense of mystery in my neurons and hence my decision was made.
My next step was to call my cycling buddies as I woke them up from their planned extended slumberfest. If I decide something, I do it and that has always been my motto. All my buddies were ready, some willingly, others grudgingly but it was decided that we were going to explore this place today.
I had a quick sip of fruit juice from the fridge and packed for myself some water as this place was almost 30 km from my residence. One needs to stay hydrated for a cycling trip, Always.
Within half an hour, the entire group had converged at our common meeting point. Dressed in bright hues of our cycling gear, I am sure we would have made some passer-by wonder whether tour de France has come to India and which one of us is Lance Armstrong.
After a brief session of greetings and a routine check of our preparations, it was time to ride.
At around 6:30 am, we were cycling through roads and streets of Mhow, capturing the attention of morning walkers everywhere we rode through. Through the four lane highway and narrow streets of Mhow, we finally reached Bhawarilal sweets. It was going to be a long trip so we deduced that we needed some calories inside us pronto after having cycled for about 15 kms so far. Our cycles came to a halt so that we can gorge on the famous samosas of this popular shop. After having had our fill, and trust me we would have had more had we not had another 13 kms to cover.
So off we went again, cycling through the lanes of Dr Ambedkar Nagar or as it is popularly known by its British name, Mhow until we left the hustle and bustle of human civilization behind and ventured into the beautiful sceneric landscape all around us. All the sweat on our skin and lactic acid in our muscles disappeared as our cycles slowed down in a collective unplanned manner, as if bound my some magic. Magic indeed it was as everywhere we could see, we saw the beautiful lush green hue of post monsoon showers greenery. The tranquility of the view just made us forget that we were cycling and it felt as if we were floating in air, slowly and slowly drifting towards something more beautiful than all of this.
Every few minutes, one or the other member of our group stopped to capture selfies with the green hills in the backdrop. Slowly but surely, we were reaching closer and closer to our planned destination. And as we reached closer, my mind was getting preoccupied with the thought that whether it was going to be a trip worth the effort or not.
Finally, after pedalling for close to 2 hours, we reached the much heard of place called as patalpani.
Patalpani, a name that fits the place to the dot. I was mesmerized by the majestic view of water falling from a height into what can be described as deep into patal. The place is a well maintained tourist spot with excellent arrangements to ensure that people do not stray into the danger zone. I was told that this was done following a major accident few years back. So now no one can venture into the the river bed and watch the magnificent beauty of the waterfall from a distance. Infact, it is from a distance only that one can take in the entire view of the waterfall surrounded by green hills. The pleasant clouded weather with a gentle breeze made our stay even more beautiful. I just sat there staring into the heart of the waterfall and listening to the music of water flowing downwards. It is that kind of place where all you need to do is sit and converge your soul with that of Gaia.
After having taken in the view and capturing it in all it's glory through my eyes, we decided to walk around and explore the surroundings. One of the localite guided us towards PatalPani railway station. As we walked towards it, I couldn't help but wonder had I gone back in time as right in front of our eyes stood a small quaint building with just a single railway track in front of it. I made a mental note to revisit this place in future via train and gather the experience of watching the waterfall from the window of my berth.
Our exploration of the surroundings involved a lot of clicking pictures and taking selfies. Our stomachs were already full from the sumptuous meal we had had at the Bhanwarilal so we had a lot of energy to spend loitering around.
At around 12, the sun broke out from the cage of clouds and the waterfall started to gleam in it's radiance. With the sun out, the temperature started to rise so we finally decided to call it a day and return home. As we collected our cycles and mounted them to pedal back home, I glanced back at the glorious view of the waterfall with a promise to come next time with my DSLR and capture it's glory in high resolution.
Hence, we left that beautiful place with our hearts full with laughter, heads brimming with images of the nature's beauty and soul drenched in the love of mother nature's. The place may be named PatalPani aka 'waters of hell' but it is nothing less than a heaven.