Once you have traveled, the voyage never ends, but is played out over and over again in the quietest chambers. The mind can never break off from the journey.
– Pat Conroy
…an excerpt from the diary that I should have written earlier…
4th July 2015
Today marked the seventh day of this trip. Last night, I was trying to learn long shot photography from Maddy, this guy has real skills. If we had a proper tripod, god knows what would he had clicked. All the other guys were busy drinking or smoking “maal”, so won’t go into details. But, all in all slept late and still woke up early.
It was one of the most beautiful mornings and I am glad that Akarsh – pony tailed Hitler permitted us to have a proper breakfast by the lake, we were in no hurry to leave this beautiful place. Pangong looked quite calm this morning and sun rays were scattered over the surface, I am still in awe of that place. The bikes were arranged orderly. The flags were waving in unison. I tried taking some pictures but they didn’t come out good – I wish I had a good camera or necessary skills. Well, I will borrow the pictures from Sunil uncle after the trip.
We made our way back to Leh today and it took us about 6 hours and we got to climb Chang La again…last time it was snowing on the top and I had slipped on the ice and the locals taught me to ride the bike (only in the muddy area) and avoid the ice. Strange, water seems to be the lesser evil here. The road is full of bumps and Subhash uncle and his wife got injured yesterday. Hanvant already had his wrist broken and David bumped his head and also had his arm swollen.
So we got back to Leh safely by lunch, and I got Sonesh to click my pictures in the snow once again, but I am severely sunburnt and looked hideous, so won’t share them. We were told that tomorrow we will be leaving for Nubra Valley and had the rest of the day for us to do whatever we want. So, I head out to nearby places. Madhav and Sumant aka Lalaji stayed back to get some rest, and I was accompanied by Somesh for the monasteries – Shey and Thiksey. We were joined by Sunil uncle and Sooraj on the way and had lunch together and afterwards, enjoyed the peace and little bit of knowledge from the monks there. Apparently there is a monk school in Thiksey and it also houses a big statue of Future Buddha there, that is the reincarnation of Buddha that is yet to be born, in case evil arise again.
After roaming around in the city, I got the fuel tank filled upto the brim as it will be needed tomorrow and also have prepared the jerry cans. After dinner, they registered for people who want to go river rafting in Zanskar, but since I already did that last to last week in the mighty Ganga, I am passing this opportunity.
We are joined by a group of Rajasthani people for the rest of the trip, and one of these has his birthday today and his friends didn’t leave any stone unturned to get it celebrated among us.
Overall, today was one of the better days of the trip, where no one got injured and everyone was properly rested. I am calling it a night early as I still have to catch-up with yesterday’s sleep.
P.S – For the SRK inside every Indian out there –