If unexpected things come your way, then most of the times they turn out to be good..at least for me!
Before the disappointment of cancelled new year plans got to my head, here i was preparing for a
roughly planned tour to Dapoli( a beach town in maharashtra) and Mahabaleshwar(strawberry country).
It was a 3 day tour. we were supposed to start at 9p.m from our college by bus on 3rd Jan. But the bus we were about to travel eventually turned up at 12 a.m! As it usually happens with a bus filled with 40 odd youngsters, we never slept and the fun continued till we reached our first destination at 6 a.m (thanks to some exceptional and adventurous driver we had!)
Let me tell something about this place Khed where we were put up. It's a village with houses made of clay,
fresh air, people still waking up at the cries of a cock.. The bus was unable to reach our rooms so a couple of MUVs were provided to drop us. But as events turned out, 6 of us were stranded on the road with no street lights or any other light source. We thought of reaching the destination on foot..that was one of the best decisions I had taken, we walked through the gaon ki galiyaa, when we looked up, we could see whole lot of constellations in the sky, the last time i saw them so clearly was 15 years ago.. I felt choked, I realized how much I missed my grandma's place..the houses were made of brick, each household had cattle and tractors or an MUV, as their main source of income was either farming or tourism.
We were given accommodation in cottages. We thought of exploring the village and asked a local on any significant spots in the village.But were really surprised when a local told us that the beach was right behind our cottage!!, because for nearly 4 hours we were driving through ghats!, since it was six anyway, some of us thought of spending some time on the beach for getting a glimpse of the first rays of the sun. We were all excited, as we being engineering students, rarely are awake at such time in the morning!
And our patience paid off. What we witnessed as the first sun rays met the sea, was absolute magic...Whole of the beach was red, the waves were red too! no wonder where the beach got it's name from-Tamboos Tirth
To our left was a typical koli village which we had explored.. it was an awesome experience peeking into the lifestyles of the kolis, which I longed to experience. We watched as the fishermen ventured into the sea for fishing in their boats. At one time the entire horizon was littered with the boats. We had the luxury of sipping tea while strolling down the beach. For some time none uttered a word. I was wondering if I was with the same bunch which never allowed anyone to sleep the day before. But the serene surrounding, the calm occasionally broken by the ways beating on the coast could calm down anyone. After going click crazy for some time, it was time for beach football!! After some crazy moments we headed for our baths..
One thing I must clear here is, you must be ready to live in a single room with a bathroom attached, without the comfort of any star hotels and the only way to approach this place is either by our good old State Transport bus or by a private vehicle..but it's a rich experience if you need a change from the monotonous and polluted city life. After munching on a sumptuous breakfast(overlooking the beach again!) we moved for local
sight seeing. We visited a chemical factory as a part of our Industrial tour and then went to another beach. It
was bigger, better and cleaner! We spent a good 3 hours at the beach and as luck would have it, in absolute silence and in awe, we saw the sun going down on the beach. It really put a ROCKING day to a close quite perfectly..
We reached our rooms in time for dinner..after gorging on the yummy dinner it was again time for fun..all the card games were out and so was the time for dumb charades. We then retired to our rooms, ant then started the actual fun. We realized that 10 people were supposed to sleep in a room designed for a maximum of 3!!!
But being engineering students, we were, we managed to pull up a design for seeing the night through, but again we could sleep only for 3 hrs when we were rudely awakened by an enterprising friend in the morning..
But that story is for another day :)