The Darjeeling-Gangtok insight Part 2

5th Aug 2016
Photo of The Darjeeling-Gangtok insight Part 2 by Piclooper

How many times has it happened that right in the middle of a long trip, one that is meant to encompass many destinations, we find ourselves unwilling to let go of the "home". A place, that somehow steals your soul and hides it in its surreal aura. A place that makes you wonder your priorities and has the ability to fix that small niggle, that hairline fracture in your heart. A place... Or sometimes it's the road, the journey, the flight of transit that lets you be.

Somewhere on the road

Photo of Gangtok, Sikkim, India by Piclooper

Darjeeling seemed unhappy about our departure and it started raining early in the morning even before our taxi had arrived at the hotel. I had booked transportation from NE taxi (ask for Rewaj) for the whole trip. We too weren't happy about leaving Darjeeling, but a new adventure awaited. Again started the twists and turns of hilly roads and the rain only made it scarier although the beauty of the trip was incomparable. One would travel through these dark cavernous 'ghats' and then suddenly would appear this small collection of houses, too small to be a village but large enough to add colour as a locality. I can't help but mention again the smiling faces that you come across the picturesque slopes. Never will. :)

The "Leaving Darjeeling" wonder

Photo of The Darjeeling-Gangtok insight Part 2 by Piclooper

The heavy mist all through the first part of the journey, the dark green (almost Slytherin) shade of aura, the lovely roads, there are a hundred things that one would love about the drive to Gangtok from Darjeeling. But the most striking one is the river Teesta. Like a true companion it doesn't leave your side and guides you to your stop. You can literally feel the amount of deposit it carries by the dirty beige colour and the force of it only awes. Throughout the drive i kept wondering about how Teesta would be, around its humble beginnings, a strange allegory of the amount of baggage and experience everyone starts carrying with time. Nature has an unique way of explaining things at the appropriate time, which is exactly why i travel, to find answers of question long lost or just simply to question myself.

The Teesta Muse

Photo of The Darjeeling-Gangtok insight Part 2 by Piclooper

So after a drive that seers hearts and a meal that brought back the relish of a bygone era, in a dhaba along the way, we reached Gangtok. And the moment I entered the city I knew, it is of my heart. Its clean, its green, its laid back but with the same buzz, i spoke earlier about. We reached late, around evening a good two hours late than the scheduled afternoon, because of a minor landslide just before entering the city. But the slight tiredness that was creeping in was relieved by the colour and the noise of the market. We wanted to rest but i couldn't help myself for a sunset view over that dreamy balcony.

The dreamy stuff

Photo of The Darjeeling-Gangtok insight Part 2 by Piclooper

Now i can't stress enough and also appreciate the fantastic job that the government and the citizens of Gangtok have done to have such a beautifully maintained city. Guard railed footpaths, brilliant wide roads across the city and mind you the whole city is built across a hill range almost on a slope like all good hill stations are, but my word, Gangtok is special. The next day it was sunny and the glory of the city and the view of the valley just dawned upon us. And like the weather, people seemed to glow and enjoy the scenery. Organised tourist cabs, proper traffic regulatory, systematic and informing signs across the city really enhance the experience of a traveller. Green, Clean and Serene. Gangtok, you beauty.

From the famous - Ropeway

Photo of The Darjeeling-Gangtok insight Part 2 by Piclooper

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