Thursday, 14 April 2016

Rishikesh with DoaRians

"Friendship is born at the moment when one man says to another "what, you too?" I thought that no one but myself"
As the time flew, donate an hour flourished into a large organization from a petty amount of volunteers. People from different educational backgrounds and idiosyncrasies joined their hands together to hit a common goal but the crux of the situation was that we were still, unexplored or let me say, nameless.
Donate an Hour gave all of us an opportunity to know each other via a small trip and come out of our chassis.
So here, I am briefing my experience to all of you.
It was more of a catch-22 situation for me, as I hardly knew anyone. Day before the trip, I was quite apprehensive and vigorously tossed the coin, as if the whole verdict of my dilemma lies on head and tails. Vaguely, I packed my bags and like a sweating bullet waited for the day ahead.

DAY 1:
We were divided into small groups, each having a group coordinator whose sole priority was to wake you up and lead to the railway station. Well, to call a person like me in the morning, whose phone goes on and off continuously because of lack of backup or should I say because of hefty amount of technical apps installed, is a challenging task. Surprisingly, my friends are used to it but my group coordinator was not and hence, he had to face the consequences. I was lost. Indeed, he was able to find me and the mission "Finding Neha” was assuredly accomplished on time.
We reached the railway station at around 6:15 AM and enduringly jostled through the monotonous security check of Delhi railway station to get across our platform .We all swarmed into a place where we could count ourselves. Damn, we were 23 in number. I could recollect few of them from the pictures posted on whatsapp group. About half an hour later, we boarded the train. I rushed as fast as I could to get the seat near the socket point. As we all settled down, we realized that something was missing. Who could travel for about 5-6 hours in a quiet mode? We ought to do something eye-popping and grooving, distinctively when we have a handful of guitarists, actors and comedians. We had Gujjus , Bongs , Punjus (including me), Telugu all together under one roof.
Before, disclosing the train scenario let me brief you all about my acting skills. I had a poor record of making a winning team lose because of my disastrous acting skills and embarrassing my best friends through my god-awful mimicry and yes, I had even forced my seniors to throw me out of the stage because of this skill.
So we, played dumbsharads. I had made the best of the efforts to hide myself behind the seat but alas! All went in vain Umm..I guess, I am not that lean. Certainly, I displayed my pathetic artistry audaciously.
I may sound witty but it is entertaining to irritate the people around you in the moving train with all your noise and games. Although there were some horrible interruptions in between, like a monstrous TT, whose sole objective was to snap out someone who did not carry his or her ID card. Reiteratively, I was in the list of defaulters. Delightedly, I had a copy of my DL in my email. And bang on it was a narrow escape. Although, I had alternate plans of hiding myself in the washroom, till the whole checking process completes, but I was relieved to see that there were few others to accompany me.
At around 12, we reached Haridwar, the yoga capital of the world and geared ourselves to march towards laxman jhula via tempo ride. Unlike, a normal auto, tempos ensure that you don’t get sandwiched and have a comfortable polluted fun ride.
From Laxman jhulla, we headed towards our camping destination. Amid all this excitement, my mind was continuously meddling as to what was camping all about? So I enquired one of the guys. I was tantalized and transfixed to a whole new world when he told me about camping.
The camps were spacious and knocked around a river .The place was exquisite. But the can of the worms was, we were still strangers. A foxy place to entice but obliviousness of the situation butchered the whole frenzy. Gratefully, we had an introductory session at the bonfire where we got to know each other. The melodramatic part was that everyone had some covert green thumbs. I was surprised to discover the occult know-hows of everyone. One was a good writer while the other was a fantabulous guitarist. One had a knack for flute and the other cherished writing poems.
Admirable weather, modish songs and dance added pep to the trip. I, being a drowsy laggard of all, went to sleep early. However, I heard someone waking me up saying there was a bunch of lizards in my tent but I was too lazy to even get up and scream.
DAY 2:
Towards the next day, we had plans for White Water Rafting. We were clefted into small assortments and were directed about the commands that are used while rafting. It was 16 km long journey, starting from Shivpuri with 9 peculiarly named rapids. I mean who names something as “Double trouble” or “Butterfly”. I had only one command to follow "GO AHEAD AND DOWN" as I was the balancing beam of my raft. It was a spine-tingling experience, giving an adrenaline rush to my veins.
After two hours of demanding water sport, we docked to a cafe for lunch. We ordered everything which looked pleasing and tempting on the menu and thereafter, realized that we should have given a third thought to it because the second thought just kicked the first thought saying "Let it be”. Subsequently, relishing the scenic view of Ganga from the café, we finally marched en route to Parmarth Niketan ashram, the spiritual haven built on the banks of Ganga. The beguile environment of the ashram is merely appeasing. And an icing on the cake was a blunt glimpse of Baba Ramdev..tongue emoticon
The whole journey to Rishikesh was bang on titillation to my stimuli. I not only learned new things but also had a jaw dropping experience which shall linger throughout my life and yes of course, I made a lot of cool friends

Writer- Neha Arora, April 14, 2016, Gurugram

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