Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Togetherness

You plan a trip to Ladakh and take all your cool tech gadgets along with you. The first selfie with ice, high definition videos, check-ins, tags, nothing should be missed, sharing with everyone else. I went to Ladakh bike trip from Manali along with fifteen other motor enthusiast. I knew just two of them and met everyone else on the dinner table at Manali. With exchanging names and profession we had a quiet dinner often disturbed by vibrations and short ringtones. Everyone of us were talking but to people we used to talk everyday, on our cellphones.

It would have went the same way had there been network for the rest of the trip. As we ascended ahead in Kashmir, the network was gone. The next thing to do was to look at the mountains, clouds, glaciers and greenery. We were mesmerized and wanted to capture them as a souvenir for our loved ones. With almost everyone owning a high-tech camera or a camcorder we tried all kinds of shots and angles. I laugh at the videos, stare at the images and cry at the memories.

The batteries started running out, memory reaching its limit but thankfully everyone had brought back-up. We stayed in tents with nothing to do. Useless cellphones with no network and nearly dying for lack of charging points, were left in the tents. We had nothing to do so we talked. We talked in general about the 1st day. It somehow lead to Mohammed Rafi songs. I remember having bonfire, sitting around in a circle and singing for straight 4 hours. Yes, most of us were harsh and tuneless but we loved it. Everyone shared the loads of food they had brought and the snacks turned into dinner for most of us. 

Travelling for eight days on a similar location will finally bore the photographer in you. The next time we stopped for a break, we cared to admire the beauty. Pics were rarely taken and people could be noticed taking deep breaths, enjoying the breeze with their eyes closed. Some stayed motionless for minutes and others smiled watching them. The four shades in the mountains, ice at top, brownish mud rocks just below, patches of green mush here and there and grayish pebbles all along the bottom. The cold crystal clear stream, the clouds in the valley, the rock just ready to fall from the mountains and herds of horses and yaks grazing around. The place is really beautiful and we all had captured it in our hearts now.

Every night a talent would be discovered. A comedian would pop out from a fifty year old manager. Someone who was kind enough to assemble everyone for dinner. Everyone shared their life and we all laughed and admired them at some point. We were no more strangers but family. There were mishaps too. People got sick and injured too. We all tried our best for their recovery. The compassion was found again. We were far from the rush of the city life and we all loved it here.

The terrain is tough to travel and even tougher to make living comfortable and easy for you. That's what made us realize the importance of each other. Time spent with people for a few days can often turn out to be the best memories.

Kissan has taken an initiative to make people realize the real togetherness. Visit http://www.kissanpur.com/ for more. Also have a look at this amazing video.