" A trek group is being formed in the apartment" said Aditi and it all started from there.
An enthusiastic trekker, my ears opened up and wasting no time, I joined the group. The group formed, ideas shared and plan was prepared in a jiffy.
At 6:45, we all met at our apartment gate and packed ourselves in two cars ensuring social distancing is maintained. All faces were masked, opened briefly to take a snap and here we go!
A cup of Kasaya added to the flavor of morning, which was foggy, cloudy and wet by night rain. The mist in the air added to the mystery of the place. As we started climbing the stairs to the temple, mounted on the hillock, we realized that the rocks may be slippery. Thanks God, I had my trekking shoe on. A brief discussion on shoes and their application gave way to the different conspiracy theories surrounding pandemic. Our self-appointed conspiracy theorist, Amar, was in full flow giving plausible reasons why Covid is spreading and why masks are being made compulsory.
Having talked about masks...where were they? We realized that the masks were not put back after Kasaya. Is Kasaya such immune booster or was it just the seduction of the nature?
While we were on our way, we met two folks, who were on their way back. They had the information that at the end of the trek, there is an Idly shop. Wow! we have another reason to brave the wild. The fear of tigers, lions and sloth bear was shrugged off for the lure of a plate of hot Idly.
But lo! there was a dead end. A quick consultation with locals helped us find the another way and we were once again looking forward to the idly shop. Oh! and this time, we had another pathfinder with us - a dog. I am yet to understand how on each trek, we find a dog to accompany us. Also, every time the story of, Yudhisthir walking through the gates of heaven with a dog, crops up.
An open space in the mid of the trek is always a good photo shoot opportunity and if that place has a hill as a backdrop, it is worth some time.
Some snaps taken, we were on our quest for the illusive idly. The sound of a bike and honks gave us confidence that the road and the shop may be round the corner. The problem is when you are on a curvy roads, the corner never seems to end.
With some twists and turns, we were at the road and the shop was really round the corner - literally. The flow of saliva seemed to have broken the barrier.
The food was hot, salubrious and healthy. The shopkeeper informed us that they do not mix any chemical in idly, not even soda. The taste corroborated to the claim and second serve was in order. A cup of coffee followed and we were on our way back. The pathfinder 'dog' was still with us. and we trekked our way back albeit with a break in between.
These days, whenever there is an all-men group and the discussion happens without any hesitation, the analysis of Modi, Raga, Trump etc is unavoidable. The same happened with us. A flat surface in the middle of nowhere, the desire to sit in the lap of nature and the inherent urge to break into an animated discussion came together. The short break on a flat surface resulted in stories, jokes and claims on world situation and the political leaders.
Oops! I forgot, on the way back, Ganesh did not forget to bring a piece of the jungle to our apartment. I hope forest department does not claim it back :)
Overall, we look forward to the next trek. Hope it comes soon!