Posted in Nomad's Diary

Saga of Shillong (6.1)

This was the final day of our Shillong tour. It was the shampoo day. A creature who had lived in a hostel doesn’t take bath regularly during winter. For me, I don’t bath for 7 days during winter. On that chilly morning, I dared to wash my hair so that I could take nice selfies.
After having a nice breakfast, I asked Moon, “What’s the itinerary for today?”
With a smiling face, he replied, “At first, we will head towards Tagore’s house followed by Elephant falls, Shillong viewpoint, Umium lake and then back to the hotel.”
I said, “And what about the cherry blossom festival?” He replied, “After completing the trip, you should freshen up yourself and then I will take you there.”

The day was shiny
Tagore’s Abode

Rabindranath Tagore, the first Nobel laureate of Asia is an icon for Bengali community. Mention any genre, any celebration, any season, any human emotion, you can find a song regarding that. He hailed from a very rich family. The Tagore family had a vacation house here in Shillong. Rabindranath wrote his famous novel ‘Shesher Kabita’, here in Shillong at that vacation house. To my uncle, that novel was the epitome of romance. So he was the most excited to see that house. Surprisingly he didn’t doze off a little bit this time.
Upon reaching the house, I found out there was signboard stating ‘Beware of Dogs’. I was hoping a fierce German Shepherd will come out; instead, some local people came out asking what was our purpose for intruding into private property.

We were shocked to have such welcome. Dad asked, “This is the home of Rabindranath Tagore. We came from Kolkata to visit this place.” They replied, “We know that, but recently a businessman has bought this house. So please leave.” I was stunned. We quickly took some pictures and left. Before leaving I saw the name of the house is ‘Jitbhumi’. Literally means ‘A land of Victory’. But the Bengalis lost a gem to some businessman.
With a heavy heart, we headed to Elephant Falls. There’s nothing special happened. We just trekked down the falls to take some pictures. It was a crowded area. So if you are going down, please mind the moist weather and wet stairs. It’s dangerous.

The Elephant Falls
The Honeymoon Couple
The Final Blueprint
Posted in Nomad's Diary

Saga of Shillong (5.1)

Chapter 5: Scorching Sun, Clear Water and Living Root Bridge (Part 1)

It was day 3. I was sleeping like a sloth under my blanket. I could hear, my father was shouting, “Get up rascal. You need to shower. At least go to the potty. I can’t manage a bathroom this time.” I could hear mother was asking, “Yes, bring three parathas and tea too.” Now folks, if you visit the hilly regions, you must try the parathas (stuffed bread). upon hearing the name of paratha, I finally got up. Brushing the teeth, I was looking at the frozen snowflakes on the window sill. Whoa! Was it snowing all night?

By 8:30 am, we were ready to leave for the day. While travelling, I always carry a small bag containing, my phone, wallet, charging battery, umbrella, earphone, comb, lipstick, eyeliner, necessary medicine and a mirror. My father calls it grandpa’s mitten. This time also was no difference. Moon was a very punctual man. As promised, he came by 8:00 am. I said, “Brother Moon, good morning. What’s today’s schedule?” He replied, “Today we are going to have a long journey. There are only two spots to cover, Dawki river and living root village. But if you guys don’t hurry up, we can’t be back by 8 pm.” Suddenly, we heard, “Be careful. Did you forget about my knee replacement surgery?” I smiled, “Moon Dada, buckle up.”

Journey to Dawki was long. Dawki is a river which has crystal clear water. If you search for its photo, I am sure you will be amazed to see its beauty. It seems like the boats on the river are floating in the air. So when I asked my mom to visit the site, she immediately said, “Yes.” It took almost 3 hours to reach there. But the road was really interesting. We crossed many hills of limestones. Moon said, “This area exports limestones to cement factory. Many people even smuggle them. You know, as the Bangladesh border is nearby, smuggling is easier.” After one and half hours of driving, he halted twice for a few time. Each time he said, “Click some photos if you need.” And each time, I said ‘cheese’ until my mother was satisfied with photos, worthy of uploading on social media.

I know that I’m a fashion disaster
25°23’13.6″N 91°52’17.6″E
Posted in Nomad's Diary

Saga of Shillong (4.2)

Chapter 4: We became Cavemen (Part 2)

What attracted me most about the garden of caves was its serene nature. After this place, We headed to Nohkalilai Falls viewpoint. According to legends, there was a widow named Ka Likai. She had an infant daughter. To survive, she had to work hard from day to night. But unwantedly she had to leave her daughter unattended. So to have an easier life, she remarried. But the second husband hated that infant. One day when Likai was out to work her husband killed the child and decapitated it. He cooked her flesh and offered that meal to Likai. As Likai was too tired due to hard she ate it all. Later when she went to take betel leaf after the meal, she found a little finger.

The Bamboo Bridge
Nohkalikai Falls

Her husband explained it all to her. Horrified with the incident she ran away from home and jumped into the lake where her baby daughter’s bones were left. This heart-breaking story dad was explaining on the way. I asked, “Ma what was your experience in your time?” She replied, “It was not so great tourist spot. It was just a viewpoint.” When we reach the point, it was almost a very small market place. Girls were selling handmade wooden crafts. They were selling wild cinnamon barks along with black peppers and other spices. I was focusing on the emerald green lake; thinking about the poor mother and her daughter who are resting together there. Moon said, “Around this time the falls is not so big. It’s real beauty blossoms at the rainy season.”

The Table-top at the side of Sohra-Shella Road