Travelling. I’d read a lot about how it changes you as a person, forces you to see life from the outside, appreciate smaller comforts but could never really fathom what it would all feel like. Well, not until I travelled to Sikkim with a bunch of people who I have come to adore, care for and trust thanks to the one week with them.
The untouched beauty of the place, the crisp mountain air – clean, pure yet so thin that your lungs are left asking for more, the warm people, the lovely food… I know that when I say this, I speak for the others that I travelled with – I’ve got vacation blues.
The beauty of Sikkim is pristine, pure and completely breathtaking… Literally in some cases as we went higher up in the mountains. Life there was so idyllic. We’d begin our day far sooner than we did in the comforts of our homes in Bombay, sure there was mild complaining, a little running around in circles (mostly me) and a lot of bantering but it was all an experience in itself. One that, I’m sure none of us will forget in a long time to come.
We’d down steaming cups of black coffee, coffee or chai as we gorged on some local delicacies like lightly spiced but aromatic thukpa, deliciously decadent momos, Maggi soup or the ubiquitous omelette and/or bhurji pav and then pile up like cattle in a car to reach our destination. Sikkim changed us, altered our habits. It forced us to slow down and literally stop and stare. Without even making any effort we became more conscious of every little thing we’d encounter, became more involved in conversations and started listening, really listening instead of merely hearing.
It was amazing to travel with people who were similar on so many levels. Sure, I was friends with most of them but this trip brought us closer. Right from massaging each other’s cold feet and numb toes with copious amounts of body lotion to heating socks with the hair dryer so that toes get warm and toasty or making a huge pot full of instant noodles in our kind hostess’ warm kitchen to playing like toddlers in the snow and pushing each other; this trip bonded us all in ways we cannot imagine. Companionable silences punctuated raucous bouts of giggles, screams and long bantering sessions made the lengthy drives through the winding mountain roads an absolute joy.
These moments, experiences and people that made this trip what it truly was – quintessentially amazing.