We could have chosen the trials following the valley, but we don't want to risk it as we are new to this place. So we preferred the never ending zig-zag roads. I was too exhausted to take my DSLR out and we had walked more than 19 kms, but there was no sign of village and its getting dark. You could hardly see any vehicles in the road. Around 7.15 PM we heard a bike approaching from behind and we stopped them to ask how far we have to walk. The scene reminded us 'Mr.Bean's Holiday' as the bike was moving too slowly.
It's just 1 Km. Thats the only thing running in the mind and more over we are running out of water. Luckily on the road, there was a water tanker used for watering banana plantations. Filled our stomach and bottles. Found a lemon on the road and I told Ela, "A lemon". Suddenly his reply was, 'Someone might have used it for Pooja'. (There's a practice of keeping lemon under the vehicle tyres). Took it, squished it and mixed with water and recharged ourselves with the lemonade.
Again we started waking
Walking. . .
Finally a ray of hope. We can see the village lights.
We barely knew any person in that village. Ela had been here two years back, but he travelled by car and too that was a few minute stop in that village. Somehow he kept the mobile number of the driver who helped him during his travel two years ago. We reached the village and we both were very hungry. When I saw the first home in the village, I told Ela, "We can ask for some food." Ela told, "We can go still further inside the village and look for any shops." We found a shop and it was a grocery store and we asked them, is there any way we can get food here? They told no.
Suddenly there was a crows around us. I was totally exhausted & i felt like my knee was getting detached from my leg. I was lying down on the street, stretching my legs. The villagers started enquiring us.
Who are you?
What are you doing here at this time?
Where are you coming from?
Why are you coming by walk?
Do you anyone here?
You should not come here after evening. There were too many Bisons and you were lucky enough not to get hit by any.
They asked our ID's for verification and we showed them what we have and they started listening to us. We told them we are too tired and asked them can we get anything to eat. They told there are no shops here and there will be no food at this time. Please give us anything (Even if it's old rice and Water. That would be sufficient for us.)
Meanwhile Ela was trying to call the Driver Shiva as the village were pestering us after we told them that we knew shiva. They need to know whether we are genuine people. Shiva told the call.
Ela: Shiva. This is Ela, Two years ago you helped me with your vehicle to reach Kodaikanal from Kumbakarai. Do you remember me?
Shiva: Yes, I do remember. How are you?
Ela: I'm fine. We are in your Village and can you help us. & Sorry to disturb you at this moment.
Shiva: This is not a disturbance. If i come to your place, will you leave me alone or wouldn't you take care of me. I am outside, Will be there in half an hour.
Also Shiva told the villagers that he knew them and do the needful till he reach.
Selvaraj opened his house for us and told us, i will start cooking. Please wait for half an hour. Meanwhile another person in the village bought few eggs and asked Selvaraj to cook the eggs for us.
We are supposed to go to Vellagavi from Kumbakarai falls. As the forest officials were not there, we had decide to take this route to reach Kodaikanal. We explained everything in detail. Suddenly one of them asked, 'Who do you know in that village (Vellagavi)?' Ela replied, "Muthu". Because he was the one who used to help Ela with food and accommodation whenever he goes to that village.
One of the villager (Forget to ask his name) told, Muthu's sister is here & we can talk to them. He took us to her house. We were standing outside her home and when she saw me, she invited us suddenly and asked us to sit. That guy told her that we know Muthu, your brother. The women suddenly told that she had seen me in Kodaikanal and my face looks familiar. I was shocked. I told her that I was in Kodaikanal once or twice. The chances are very less that you could have seen me.