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The wish to delve deep into something but not knowing what often leads you to do strange things, visit stranger places and indulge into the strangest and the most socially inappropriate behaviour. Yet, the crazier, the better, isn’t it? Just how we landed on a 2 day trip to Panchgani! A 10 hour long haul to Panchgani main market didn’t disappoint us.
Dreaded paths are treaded paths as we were soon about to realise. Lunch and a stroll lead us to a haunted house. As I write this, I am jittery and I hope I shall get to sleep. Along with a haunted house or two, we also come across a children’s garden that can only be accessed from the back gate. Now, I am actually wondering if the child I saw in the garden was real or not. A bakery that has been operating since 1901 and everything strawberry, chocolate and chikki is all our trip consisted of. Or did it?
It was a lot more; it was a feeling of peace and contentment accompanied by curiosity. Yes, in curiosity we found peace. In an era, where all the activities are subconsciously conducted for social media, the only usage of internet was to fulfil our inquisitives. For instance, what was the temple of a devoured, religious Indian goddess doing inside what looked like the property of a French, catholic family? What is the story of the bakery of 1901?
Why couldn’t we ask around? Well, everyone was clueless. Yes, from the lady of the bakery to the locals around Mon Plaisir (the house that was haunted), no one knew a thing. We brought home loads of new information, strawberry products, chikkis, hazelnut products and memories. Memories that we shall cherish!
Musings over wine and breezer,
Wonderings over the solar geezer,
Silences those were comforting,
Donkeys that weren’t,
Our own selves confronting,
With the others current...!
The trip came to an end but the journey of the universe continued, the soul wandered into a distant land, the mind wondered and the heart couldn’t help but longingly ache for peaceful curiosity.
4000 feet above sea level, humility, humanity and heritage resided in scenic harmony. The wish to reside with them existed but the need to get back to the chaotic island city was acute. Imprints were left behind, mandatory selfies were clicked, and a desi Sherlock was discovered along with the feeling of sitting in a CCD on a hill station.
Moments and milestones were made along with delightful and gleeful purchases. The movie maker saw the making of chocolate and cheese without touching her camera. Oaths were taken, promises were made, some were kept, and some were broken.
Life went on, the Panchgani trip a token, a break from the monotony of chaos. A chance to relax your mind while tiring your body. Yet, the urge to delve deep exists, unaware of the next strange thing, it lingers on and on...
Picture Credits - Ranjini Maitra