Unforgettable Tour – I am Sorry

I am Sorry

It’s another marvelous day at Simla. It became a habit for me and Kavya to meet at the breakfast and have a walk to the nearby places until the bus starts. The bus started at 11:00 in the morning. Though its 11:00 it’s pretty cold outside. I wondered how it would be in winter if it’s chilling at 11:00 in the mid summer. The guide told us that we are going to watch a nearby place in Simla where we can see some beautiful valleys, have some horse riding etc.

“Can you give me the window seat?” She asked.
“No way…” I said. “I never gave my window seat to anyone in my life time”
She was disappointed.
“What’s so surprising in it?” I asked.
“When a beautiful girl asks you something you are not even caring about it”
“Did I miss anything? I did not see any beautiful girl asking me anything…”

She gave me a punch. Boy she was really strong.

I was immersed in my own world with my walkman and enjoying the beauty of the nature. She was talking to her roommate Swati who sat behind us. I know that she was angry with me. After we reached the place she went off with her new friend Swati.

It’s again another place with nature doing magic with its beauty and making feast to your eyes. Horse riding over the hill was a marvelous experience. The place where we went was so high above the sea level that we can feel the clouds passing through us touching our body. I bought some apples. Those were fresh apples plucked from the jungles over the hills and were very tasty. I never got that taste in the apples that we buy here.

After a few hours we got back into the bus.

“So how was the trip?” I asked.
She did not answer.
“What happened?”
“OK… I am sorry… You are beautiful. I was just kidding. Now don’t be angry with me…”

She just smiled. She looks really beautiful when she smiles.

“By the way where did you go yesterday night when I came to your room” She asked.
“I was in the room. I was tired yesterday and was sleeping”
“OK… “

And she started her as usual non stop talk about all the things in the world which are completely unrelated to us. I don’t understand how one can speak completely useless things continuously and yet make them look interesting. Yes… You will never get bored talking to her. She makes even most trivial things in the world interesting.

It was 6:00 in the evening by the time the bus reached the hotel. She came to my room at 9:30 while I was watching the highlights of the match between West Indies and Pakistan.

“Let’s go for dinner” She said coming into my room.
“I had my dinner with my parents. What are you doing until now?”
“Nothing…I was just trying to complete my novel. Come let’s go”
“No… You see I am busy watching something. You go…”
“Shut up and just come. I am not going alone”

I don’t have any option. Yes I have an option but again I am not at all interested in saying sorry again. We went to the restaurant nearby.

“Are you going to sit here like that” She asked.
“What am I supposed to do?”
“Just order something for yourself. It looks awkward if you are sitting there idly and staring at me while I am eating”
“What shall I order? I just had my Dinner”
“Order some Ice Cream for both of us”
“Ice Cream… Its damn cold here and you want to order an Ice cream!!!”

But she did not listen. She called the waiter and ordered Ice cream for both of us. She is such a kind of girl that if she wants to do something she will do it. She will not wait for you. After that we went back. Now the highlights are over and Pakistan won the match.

The next day we did a little bit of shopping and had another great day in the tour. By this time we became good friends.

She bought a gift for me. It’s a Key chain with my name beautifully carved on it.
“Thanks” I said. “But I am sorry… I did not buy you any gift”
“It’s OK”

I felt guilty and next time whenever I went to shopping I thought of buying something for her. But that next time did not come. Whenever we went for shopping I used to forget to bring a gift for her.

Now after spending 3 days in Simla it was time to move from Simla to our next point Kulu-Manali. Simla had been a great experience. Now I am waiting for our holiday in Manali.


Unforgettable Tour – Simla: The Queen of hills

Simla: The Queen of hills

Simla, the city of hills and the Capital city of Himachal Pradesh always has a special mention in the Indian History of tourism. The splendid hills, the chilling weather, the scenic variety… One can’t describe the beauty of it.

The Great Simla welcomed us with a cold breeze even in the mid summer. I woke up lazily. The bus is moving slowly and it is now reaching the hotel. I could see the deep valley and the floating clouds which are very much parallel to us now through the window. I wondered how high above the sea level we are. I could see small houses deep in the valley. There are boards here and there indicating the danger points. It’s now 8’O clock in the morning. I felt a little bit shivering inside me.

‘Its a bit cold here’ I thought. Some people forget themselves while they were sleeping. Kavya comes under the same category. She was sleeping happily occupying half of my seat and leaning over my arm. I thought of waking her up. But the guide in our bus took that duty. He started announcing that we have reached Simla and will be reaching the hotel very shortly.

She got up and saw herself leaning on my arm. She immediately took her head off.

“I am sorry” She said. “I was in a deep sleep and did not notice it…”
“Its OK” I said without looking at her. I was enjoying the scenic beauty of Simla. It’s really very beautiful out there. The valleys covered with greenery are making a feast to my eyes.

The bus reached the hotel. The guide gave us three hours time to get ready ourselves. The ‘Southern Travels’ – It is the one which has arranged the tourist package. They have a procedure. They gave a single room with a double bed for every two persons in the family. And if a family has odd number of people, the room would be shared with another person from another family with odd number of people. As we are three of us in the family my parents got a separate room. Now I need to share the room with someone. Fortunately the total number of people on the tour was odd. I am the last person to get allotted to a room and I got a room all for myself as there was no one left to share the room with me. I went into the room. I have got three hours time. I thought of sleeping for a while.

I don’t know how long I slept. Someone was knocking my door. I opened the door. Mom was standing there. She told me to get ready soon as they were going for breakfast and were waiting for me. I asked them to carry on and told them that I will meet them at the bus. I tried to sleep again but again there was someone knocking the door. I got up and opened the door. It was Kavya. I don’t know how she managed to find my room.

“Hi… Are you sleeping???”
“Oh! Sorry… I’ll come later” She said.
“It’s OK” I said.
She has already disturbed my sleep. There is no point in coming back and disturbing once again.
“Just come in” I said “By the way what are you doing here?”
“Just feeling bored…”
“What about your classical novel” I said winking at her.
“No… It’s getting bored. The beginning was interesting but eventually it’s getting bored”
“I know… I know… All these classical novels are of the same type” I said. My observation has been always correct in this regard.
“Shut up…’ she said.
“Go… Get ready… I am feeling hungry. Let’s go for a breakfast” She ordered.

It took half an hour for me to get ready. Later we came out of the hotel. The great view of Simla took off my early laziness. From the point where the hotel is situated the scenic view of Simla city is fabulous. There are hills covered with greenery all over.

We have still some time to get into the bus. So we thought of seeing the nearby areas around our hotel. Its 10:30 but still it looks like early morning.

We talked about lot of things from movies to music, Cricket to Caroms all along the way enjoying the beautiful and marvelous nature around us. We reached just in time before the bus started.

It’s an hour ride from Simla to the place where we were going. The place was so beautiful that I could not wait any longer to take as many pictures as I can with my camera. The beautiful valleys, the long trees that covered the valleys, the rope way, the special chat that I ate at the shop nearby, everything is so great that even now I can remember each moment I had spent there.

It was 7:00 in the evening by the time we returned back to Simla. I was too tired to go for dinner. I went to the room and took rest for the rest of the day.

Unforgettable Tour – On the Way to Simla

On the Way to Simla

Early to Bed and Early to Rise – I am not that kind of person. I like late nights and late mornings.

The next day I woke up at 10’O Clock. That day was the first match for India in the World Cup 1999. South Africa won the match chasing the Indian total of some 250+. I was really disappointed. India lost its first match in the WC 1999.

In the evening we packed our luggage and moved on to begin our tour. The first halt would be Simla. The bus starts at 5:30 from Delhi and reaches Simla by 7:00 the next day morning. I got a window seat. I always liked traveling. I thought of having a window seat while traveling would be nice especially when you are on a sight seeing tour. I settled down in my seat with my walkman and a few Audio cassettes.

“Hi…” I heard a voice calling me. I took off the headphones. It was she whom I met yesterday night. She was sitting beside me.
“Hi…” She said again.
“Hi…” I said. I wondered what she was doing here.
“I am Kavya…” She Said.
Kavya – I never heard that name before. I just thought what the meaning of that name would be.
“Hello…” She waved her hand towards me.
“Yeah… I am Ganesh” I said. Then I saw that she was carrying a book. Now I became very curious about the book.
“Sorry…” She said.
“For What”
“Yesterday I knocked your door and asked you to reduce the volume. I am sorry for that” She said looking at me.
“Hmmm… It’s OK” I said. “By the way what were you studying at that time over there…? Preparing for any exams”
“No” She answered. “I was just trying to read this novel”
She showed me the fat book which she was carrying in her hand.

“A Novel…” I thought. “And she asked me to reduce the volume for concentrating herself on a stupid novel.”

I took the book from her hands. It was one of those classic novels. I don’t like the word ‘Classic’ when it comes to novels. “Now…” I thought “one needs lot of concentration and patience to read these so called classic novels”

Coming to novels and books my taste is completely different. I like fiction, Suspense thriller novels. I feel that one needs a lot of patience for reading those classic novels. And I don’t want to waste all my patience on such novels. There are more things in this world to apply your patience at.

I returned back her book and she went into her own so called classical world. Now the bus has reached the outskirts of Delhi. Now the guide of our tour stood up and explained the details of our tour. After that they started showing some movie. I wondered what she would do now, go and ask the guy out there to stop the movie.

“Now… Go and ask the guy to reduce the volume or switch off the TV… Will you???” I said winking at her.
She laughed and closed the book as she could not read the book now. Now even the lights are put off.
“So what do you do??” She asked.
“I am doing my engineering first years in computers” I said taking pride in my voice.
“That’s not bad. I am doing B.Com… By the way what were you watching yesterday night with that much volume on your TV?”
“Yeah… Nothing Big… Just watching the match between England and Sri Lanka”
“Oh… Do you watch Cricket??”
“Yup… I Love Cricket and don’t you watch Cricket”
“I just see matches in which India plays. I like Azhar, the captain of India”
“I like Sachin Tendulkar. You know I am always proud to be a great fan of him”
“What’s so special about him? I think it’s the media which is making more hype of him…”
“Just shut up” I said.

I become mad whenever anyone questions the capability of Sachin.

“Oh Sorry…” I said realizing the rudeness in my voice. Now I have decided to tell her the greatness of Sachin. I wanted to prove her wrong. And I started telling her about Sachin Tendulkar, his greatness, his commitment, his attitude, his character, his influence on Indian team, how he inspires others and so on. I was telling about Sachin Tendulkar to her all night until she fell asleep. Maybe I went too far…

The bus was moving towards Simla. I was still thinking of Sachin. I planned to talk more about him and prove to her that Sachin deserves all the Laurels and appreciations coming on his way. “This world cup is going to prove what Sachin is…” I thought. I don’t know when I went to sleep.

But when I opened my eyes, we were in Simla…

Unforgettable Tour – The First Meeting

The First Meeting

Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans. New Delhi, the capital city of the Biggest Democratic Country in the world, the city where major and crucial decisions about the country are taken invited me. This is the city where the tour I never forget has started. I never thought that I will be going to Delhi in the near future. But Life has different plans for me…

The flight landed in the Indira Gandhi International Airport. We headed straight to the hotel. The room was already booked by the travel agent as a part of their travel package. Its 10:00 AM in the Morning. The bus for Simla starts at 5:00 the next day evening.

We booked a cab and went on to have a sight seeing in Delhi. We watched the Parliament where the leaders elected by the people always fought among themselves for various reasons except for the people. We saw the Rashtrapathi Bhavan and the India gate where huge parade depicting India’s glory happens every year on 26th of Jan. We paid our homage to the great people who sacrificed themselves for our country. The Red fort stood there firmly representing the Independence of a Great nation. Then we visited Raj ghats – the Samadhi of Mahatma, the lotus temple, Qutub Minar and many more… Boy Delhi has got many places to visit.

Its 9:30 PM when we returned back to our room. We headed to the restaurant in the ground floor for dinner. The restaurant was crowded. All the tourists who booked their package were given boarding in the same hotel. There was no place to sit. Mom and dad said that they would come back after some time and went back to the room. I was feeling hungry and so I took a place in the corner where there are only two seats and one was already occupied by someone. They have placed a hand bag there over the chair to indicate that it was occupied.

The waiter came and took the order. A girl came over to the table. She took the bag from the chair, took her seat and called the waiter. She was reading a book. She called the waiter and ordered something without even taking her face off the book. She was completely immersed in reading it. I wondered what might be the book she was reading.

“That might be a very suspense thriller novel” I thought “Or she might be preparing for some exam the next day early in the morning”

I went back to the room after having my dinner. The highlights of England vs. Sri lanka are coming on TV. That’s the first match of the world cup. It’s really hot inside the room. The summer heat was showing its effect. I opened the door for some air to let in. Sri Lanka batted first and then England was chasing the total in reply to it. England was in a good position.

Suddenly I heard someone calling me. It was the same girl whom I saw in the restaurant. She was standing at the door of my hotel room. She was carrying the same book.

“Hi” She said waving her hand at me. “Can you reduce the volume?” She asked.
“What? Come again” I asked.
“You see… I am trying to study out here in the corridor” She said “and the sound is disturbing my concentration. If you don’t mind can you please reduce the volume or close the door”

I heard a huge noise. The crowd was cheering England. Someone must have hit a six. I need to wind up this soon. Otherwise I will be missing all the action arguing with someone who is trying to study some book at this time of hour in a hotel corridor.

I don’t have any options. I don’t want to argue with her right now. I said “OK” and quickly closed the door. England won the match with 8 wickets. After that I went to sleep thinking of how India would take on South Africa in their first encounter in the World cup.

That was our first meeting.

Unforgettable Tour – The Beginning

The Beginning

An Unforgettable tour – This is the tour which haunted me for the years since it started. It makes me nostalgic, it makes me laugh, it makes me cry and it has taught me the lesson of life. This is the tour which I can never forget in my life time and this is the one which has given me the most unforgettable gift of my life… the most unforgettable gift.

I was so excited when my dad told us that he is planning for a tour to North India. I never thought at that moment that it would be the tour I would never forget in my life time. Never!

It was 1999; I was studying B.Tech First Year at that time. How can I forget those good old college days? Sleeping in the classes, Mass Bunks, group discussions in the canteen, the endless arguments about Sachin Tendulkar, watching late night movies with friends… the list goes on. Oh God!!! Please give me back my college days.

It’s April. The summer has started. The temperature might be around 43 Degrees. On that day we were having a hot discussion on the composition of the Indian Cricket team for the coming World Cup in the canteen. Canteen always used to be our place for discussion. The thing I like about the discussions in canteen is that if you start a discussion people come and join you automatically whatever may be the topic. And boy it’s the hottest topic of that time – India and the World Cup. That’s the last day of our college before summer vacations.

After I reached home Dad said we will be leaving for Delhi the next week. Dad booked a tourist package from Delhi which covers Simla, Kulu Manali, Chandigarh and Agra. I felt very happy. My summer vacation is going to be great this time. After a week I called up my friends and said that we are leaving for Delhi the next day and I promised them that I will get some presents for them.

We started the next day to Delhi. I still remember that day. I am great lover of Cricket and I am proud to say that I am a great fan of Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar. The tour started on the day on which the Cricket World Cup 1999 started. It means that I am going to miss some action of the world cup. I am going to miss the master Sachin in action.

But Life has some other plans for me. I never thought at that moment that I am going to meet someone in Delhi… Someone whom I could never forget in my life… Someone who made this tour a precious and unforgettable one… Someone so special… Someone…