Lonavala in August 

6th Oct 2017

fury in the clouds

Photo of Lonavala in August by Shreyanshi Agarwal

I am no nomad. But given the passion I have, I never miss a chance to travel. Last year, I happened to grab one such chance. When my family was planning a holy trip to Shirdi in Maharastra, I was busy searching the hill stations we could visit after all the religious visits to temples in and around Shirdi is done. Lonavala and Khandala were shortlisted. My excitement knew no bounds.

After 15 days, we were on the roads from Shirdi to Lonavala. The weather was cold with frequent drizzling. I turned on the softest music to blend perfectly with the cold breeze that blew through my face, whispering in my ears and sinking into my heart.

" Destinations matter but little,

as long as you are in the right direction,

Live the journey and let it live you!"

( That is the best part about traveling! Realisations and quotes strike hard, or you can say your soul starts talking to you.)

As we went on the wavy courses, I could see the hills. like a green giant, it stood there, looking over the farmers watering the fields, smiling at the waves of the leaves hanging on the wild trees, and having a talk with the clouds above. Now the wavy paths came to an end and the circular paths began. Round and round up the hill we went seeing every little species that the hill is a habitat for. We saw the tiny water streams that run down the hill, maybe they wanted to be too mainstream. Individualism you see!

Anyway, we reached Lonavala and we were informed that it's been raining really hard in Lonavala since 3 days and all the tourist spots were closed. It was a disappointment. But, we decided to stay for another day and see if we could at least visit some hills points. Next morning, Our disappointment turned into excitement when the manager said that the hill spots including the lion's point, the shooting point, and the tiger's leap are open for tourists. We immediately took a cab and started. Describing this ride as just as a thrilling experience would be an understatement. We were driving through the clouds that once used to rain over us. Nothing was visible except the dense white fog like existence of the clouds. The driver did not seem to be scared at all.

" there is a discipline that we follow in these roads, no ones exceeds a speed limit and no one drives on the wrong side of the route. That keeps our confidence intact"

He said, answering all our perplexed expressions.

As we went higher, the clouds became denser. All I could think was - "if ever I travel to heaven, the route will be no less similar than this!"

We reach the highest point accessible to normal tourists, the wind was blowing as if it has been set free after being imprisoned for several years.Though, all the points (the tigers point, the shooting spot,etc) were almost the same and came one after the other, the thrill of walking in the clouds, to and fro the spots withstanding the breeze cannot be explained.

The rain and the wind joined hands to form an mildly outrageous duo. We could not have gathered the courage to stay there for long, had the chaiwalas and pakoda walas not been there doing there businesses bravely amidst the fury.

They gave us the motivation to stand amidst all this on the edge of the hill look down to see the teeny tiny trucks and cars making there way to there destinies, unaware that there is someone on the hill watching them move. And that someone while watching them is feeling her soul whisper to heart the meaning of her existence.

The next day, we visited a few gardens in Khandala and also the popular celebrity wax museum, where I shook hands with Micheal Jackson, Gandhiji, Subhash Chandra Bose, etc. (not ghosts ! wax statues!) and as the night came we were in a train on our way back to hyderabad, carrying an invisible bag of soulful memories and valuable experiences.

Photo of Lonavala, Maharashtra, India by Shreyanshi Agarwal
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