On my way to work today, I passed a supermarket and I saw an aged man coming out with a huge bag in one hand and a Jim Jam (Biscuits with jam in between them) in the other. He could hardly manage to carry one bag and was struggling with opening the pack. He finally opened it and the smile on his face was the same as a kid who had found his favourite toy after a long day of searching. He opened it and licked the jam before eating the biscuits separately. Not only do some habits die hard, but some people always remain a kid at heart. ❤
Day 1 – 21st October
I make my journey from JNU to North Campus, to meet the people who are going with me. Our bus leaves at night from Majnu ka Teela. It is a little awkward since I have met most of these people for the first time. At night everyone packs and we leave after a delicious dinner of homemade khichdi. We wait for the bus, it keeps getting delayed but it finally arrives. And the journey towards Parvati Valley begins.
Day 2 – 22nd October
Almost half the day had passed until we reached our destination but the journey was beautiful, with mist floating down the valleys when the sun began to appear. There were tall trees and I knew we had reached when there was an evident chill in the air. Our hungry souls directly made way towards Cafe Bhoj. We ate to our heart’s delight and then looked for a hotel. After getting some rest, we decided to have a bonfire and we started walking towards the campsite with torches in our hands to ward off the eeriness that the mountains possess by default. We reached the riverside where we sat on a round table and talked and laughed and drank and smoked. Then we walked closer to the river, so close that our voices were drowned by the sound of the flowing water. It was cold, very cold and the fire didn’t do much in warding it off. It was finally time to sleep.
Day 3 – 23rd October
I woke up before everyone else, except S. The first thing to do was take a bath and dry your hair in the mountain sunshine. We had delicious lunch consisting of schnitzels, falafels, lafas, oreo shakes, ginger-lemon-honey tea, etcetera. We then made our way towards a place called Chalal but were never able to reach it. Instead we found a place beyond the bridge, among the rocks where hot steam rose like mist from mountains and I wasn’t afraid of feeling cold again. The moon was high in the sky, all around us there were mountains – snow capped. And even when nothing was visible, the snow was shining bright, reflecting the moonlight. The rushing pristine water of the river, threw up water droplets which shone like diamonds when they caught moonlight or light from a torch held by a passerby on the bridge. My words can never do justice to what I saw that night.
(The night was spent deciding who wanted to stay for one more day. 4 of us decided to stay back and then 3 hours were spent cancelling and booking tickets)
Day 4 – 24th October
Yet again, S was the first one to wake up and we once again made our way towards Chalal after everyone left post a hearty lunch. This time it wasn’t our lucky day. The police caught us but let us go without much hassle. We went to Jim Morrison cafe and the sandwiches there were to die for. The trek was totally worth it. I was too happy to register much. Happy because it was Kasol, for another day. Once you go there, you never want to leave.
Day 5 – 25th October
We went to Magic View Restaurant, didn’t really have the patience to look at the view because I was too tired from all the climbing. Who wants to work on a vacation anyway. This vacation was so much different from the last time when I was all sober and the weather was not so good. This time the water had completely changed its color and you could almost see the water-bed. It was a “good trip”. Can’t wait for the next one. Will put up the pictures soon.
Day 6 – 26th October
Back to Delhi. It was like some other world. Definitely not a good one after the serenity of the Valley. Well, all good things come to an end.
So I have been really busy for the last few days. Going out with friends, drinking, etc. Happy Friendship Day by the way, if you believe in all this. Went out with friends for a meal today. I had Mutton with slow cooked Yoghurt and Saffron Gravy with Tawa Paranthas and Chappatis. It was a Bengali restaurant named Boda in Mumbai and I have to say it is ne of the best mutton dishes I have ever had. It tasted like home. 🙂
I swear I wasn’t much of a foodie before this, but it could be because of the background I have had. No one in my family is obsessed with food. They believe in eating plain and simple food, neither many spices, nor much oil. Sometimes I wish I had grown up in a place where I was exposed to a more diverse culture. Not that I despise whatever I have now but being exposed to another culture is always a delight. I guess shifting from one place to another compensated for that. It all comes back to the same thing, I don’t want to visit a place to know about it, I want to live there!
It is amazing how a simple thing like food leads to the unfurling of such a vast thread of information. But isn’t food one of the basic necessities of life and so, extremely important? I guess every civilisation is described to an extent by the kind of food they make. People spend years perfecting this art and I must say, this is one of the most underrated kinds of art.
I am digressing way too much now but isn’t it what this is all about! I would really like to mention a few movies here which you must watch if you love food:
- Ratatouille: Pixar works its magic yet again!
- No Reservations: Even though food is not the main theme, it will work as something much more bigger, as love and so much more. Well don’t they say, the way to someone’s heart is through their stomachs.
- Chef: A light-hearted movie about a literal journey, of a chef and his food-truck.
- Jiro Dreams of Sushi: My love for Japanese culture will find repeated mentions in this blog. This beautiful documentary will show you the efforts that a person could make to achieve perfection!
- Cloudy with a chance of Meatballs: Another animated comic movie about food and as the title suggests. The impossible imagination of a filmmaker turning into reality