The Little Birdy in Narghota

Naddi, is a beautiful small village close to Mcleod Ganj in Himachal. This place was where I stayed during my visit to Himachal. After a couple of days in Naddi, I came to visit my friend who stays close by in another small village called Narghota. Narghota is situated in the southwest of Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh. I reached here by a local bus from Naddi. The bus rides here are thrilling and feel like you are on an adventurous ride in an amusement park. People here are very sweet and are always ready to help. The guy from the hotel where I stayed, helped me get a bus to Dharamshala, the conductor told me where exactly to get down. I was thankful I asked him to tell me when my stop came. I would end up way ahead of my stop if he didn’t tell me where to get down. While travelling locally in a place that you are little or not familiar with, it is always best to ask people for a little help beforehand.

I finally met my friend at a mall called ‘Maximus’ which was a small but pretty mall. The mall was clean and well maintained with a lot of outlets to shop and dine. But what caught my eyes was that, there was also an open corner for a sunset viewpoint, which I obviously did not miss.

Maximus Mall, Himachal Pradesh

My friend’s house is a 15 minutes’ walk from the mall. She asked me if I wanted to take a cab but I chose to walk. It was dark, about 7 in the evening. There were hardly any people around and the walk was fantastic. I was surrounded by the beauty of the mountains all around me. Even though I could not see the mountains clearly, the lights shimmering about from the villages close by in these Mountains, was a beautiful view that made my heart feel light from all the chaos inside my head.

As soon as we entered her village, a familiar smell made my nose tingle, the smell of cow dung it was. The sounds I heard were familiar too. The birds chirping, the cows mooing and their bells, the whistling wind and the green fields, all these reminded me of my native, Udupi. It is beautiful how nature is one and the same and yet so different at the same time. We reached her house and her Nani was the sweetest! I really enjoyed the food that she made as everything she made was like a party for my taste buds. I ended up eating Dal rice, Khadi, Thil ki Chatni, mango pickle and an authentic Himachali dish called Bhadi which is made out of sun dried dal. My Morning was again another party for my taste buds with Mixed veg paratha, dhahi and butter along with a strong tea.
All geared up for work after all the amazing food, I now sit here at their balcony which has an amazing view of the Dhauladhar ranges and greenery all around. I could not help but write about this moment that I am experiencing..

I hear the whistling of the cool breeze, sensing the touch of it on my skin. I also feel the warmth of the sun kissing me Good Morning. It is a feeling of gratitude that I feel towards nature, that I can sense these two things at the same time.

I hear the chirping of the birds, the rustling of the leaves as they depart from the trees and fall down to become manure to the ground for more trees to come, I hear people talk from far down the mountains and kids running around carefree. Occasional sounds of the vehicles that are far away along with the humming of the bees all around me. It is a feeling of gratitude that I feel towards nature, that I can hear all these things at the same time.

I can see the hazy snow covered mountains far away, which marks the last layer. The layer before that are the rich green mountains with buildings here and there. I can see trees that look like broccoli far away, I can see the trees with all their details close by. I see a birdhouse hanging by the tree beside the balcony. I am unsure which bird it belongs to. It could also be a beehive, I cannot be sure, but all I know is that it is beautiful.

I see a sparrow is interested in me. She comes by the balcony and sits on the rail. As soon as I look at her she flies away. She comes back again and looks at me. I look at her from the corner of my eye and write as though I cannot see her. She continues looking at me as I write here at this moment. I wonder what she is thinking of me. Is she thinking what is this stranger doing here? Or does she think I look familiar? Do I look funny to her? Does she think that I am a threat perhaps and is studying my every move to safeguard her family? Or does she want to be friends?

I do not want to look at her for at this moment, I like her company. She makes me feel welcomed; She makes me feel like she can read my mind. On beautiful days like these, a birdy’s company is all I need. All I feel is gratitude towards Nature that I can see and sense all these things at the same time.

This article is dedicated to the little birdy that kept me company that day. I will never forget the comfort of her presence that day. Life is all about little moments like these. I hope to make many many more to fill in my box of happy memories.

Do you have such simple and small but very beautiful travel moments that you can never forget? Do let me know in the comments below!

Coastal Skies & Musical Nights!

Every summer, when I went to my native with my family, it used to be one of the best feelings ever. Surrounded with forests, rivers, fields and the sea itself, this place has a beauty that will take your heart away in a glance if you are a nature lover.

The houses here are not many. Mostly around 3-5 houses scattered here and there surrounded with coconut groves and forests. Since this is a coastal land, there are hardly any other seasons except summer and rainy. People here seldom experience any winter at all! As the sun sets and the stars come up, the village goes quiet and dark. People here mostly sleep at around 7pm since they will have to wake up early for their everyday routine at 4am. The main occupation here being agriculture.

I have been obsessed with the sky since my childhood. Every night in my native, there would be a mandatory power cut. The whole village would become dark and there will be chimney lights lit up in all the houses. That is when you listen, listen to what the night here has to offer you. The nights here, have a music of its own. There will be sounds of the waves hitting the shore back and forth, there are crickets humming all night long as if to sing rhythmically along with the waves, the wind coming from the sea makes the tall coconut trees dance steadily making it look like nature throws a party here every night! Occasionally, there will be disco lights added to this party when the fireflies decide to join too! Along with them, there will also be guest singers sometimes if you are lucky, the frogs grumping along for a karaoke night and the beetles joining them as chorus singers! Overall, when you are in coastal places like these, close your eyes and listen. You will be surprised how all these little sounds will be in harmony with one another.

You might be a little creeped out to set your foot out here during the nights if you are afraid of snakes. I should warn you, there are many! However, if you do come out and look up at the sky, all you will see is a dazzling pretty world over your head! There are two kinds of views here that you can savor, one is the village view and the other is the sea view.

If you are inside the village, your view will be a number of coconut trees and areca nut trees looking down at you as if to ask you why you have not been looking up all this time in surprise. The Moon will be peeking out through the coconut leaves. You will see him hide away and come back in sight as though he is playing peek-a-boo with you. As if, all of a sudden, you caught him looking at you! All the stars around him will twinkle at you as if to testify and mark this beautiful night, in your name!

If you are by the sea, the same moon who was shying away from you, will be calling you, grabbing your attention boldly. Looking at you directly, with all his charm as if to tell you why were you so late for this meeting! All the stars around will shimmer while the waves of the sea touch your feet, welcoming you to a world where you are the only dancer and where the music plays according to your moves, as per your wish! Every step you take will feel like a beat. Every breath you take will make you feel like you are complete!

I wish for you to experience these nights, when you can listen to the nature talk to you. When all those voices in your head go shush! I hope that all that you hear there on, is the quiet of your soul, singing to the music of nature! For in these moments, you will be in one with yourself. For my friend, these moments that will count!

Have you experienced coastal nights? What are your thoughts about these nights and how different was it from what I experienced? Do let me know in the comments below!

Look out this space for the City lights, coming soon!    


Coastal Skies, City Lights & Mountain Nights!

Have you ever wondered how different day and nights are in different places? I come from a small village called Padukone. Padukone falls under Udupi district and has its own different lifestyle, which I will be writing about in detail in my upcoming blogs.

Since I come from this small village, live in the beautiful Bengaluru city and recently went for a trek to the Himalayan ranges, I decided to write about how different nights felt like in these different places. Even though, it is the same night sky!

So, after wondering for a long time on what my first blog post should be about, I have decided to break this down and write down my experience about how different but beautiful they all are in their own ways.

Watch out this space for more!