Sole-Tales from the Himalayas: Day 4 - Finding Serenity in Solitude

Sole-Tales from the Himalayas: Day 4 – Finding Serenity in Solitude

13th May 2022

I woke up to the sound of silence. It was 7 in the morning, and the sun shone brightly. The rays were peeping into my room through the curtains. I went out to see the rays falling on the snow-capped mountains. The mountain top looked gorgeous! I stood there and counted my blessings to have had this opportunity to open my eyes and see the Himalayas.

I did not know what I would do today. I got ready and left, wanting to wander around. I asked a local guy about what’s nearby for me to explore. Online research said Kheer Ganga is about 2 hours from where I stay. The local guy told me about a waterfall nearby, about a 45-minute trek. I was confused. I stood there looking at the path on the right that would take me to Kheer Ganga and the path on the left, which would take me to the waterfalls. It felt like a difficult decision to make. I decided to take a right and started walking. A cute little dog started following me from nowhere. I walked for about 3 minutes, and the dog kept following. When I was about to take a turn, the dog stood before me, blocking my way. It felt like it was almost telling me not to take this path. I stood there looking at him, and he stood there blocking my way, looking at me. I decided to turn back and take the other path towards the waterfalls. Felt strange. The universe wanted to answer my question and help me decide. This incident made me believe more in what Guruji from Tapovan told me. Start walking, and the path will unfold. Listen to the signs from the universe, and be aware.

I started trekking towards the waterfalls. There was greenery, mountains, silence, and the sound of waterfalls from somewhere far away. It looked like the path was made by the people who kept walking there: no roads but just some rocks, steps and slides. I enjoyed the walk. It was serene. I found a small cafe run by an old uncle. I stopped by to eat my breakfast. He offered me yummy veggie Maggie and chai. I relished looking at the snow-capped mountains. I firmly believe that lord Shiva is somewhere walking in the Himalayas even now. The energy it oozes is mystical. I wanted to feel him. I sat there talking to him and asked him to make me feel his presence.

I reached the waterfalls. Somewhere at the top of the mountains, snow melts, and the water gushes down the mountains and joins the Parvathy River. Nature is magical. The banks of the riverine give birth to many lives. The water keeps flowing until it reaches its destination. It makes its path amidst hard rocks and harsh terrain; nothing can stop it. I looked at the waterfalls and thought about the famous quote: where there is a will, there is a way!

Waterfalls in the Parvathty Valley

There was no one near the falls. It was me and Mother Nature. I sat on the rock, listening to the gushing waterfalls and meditating. I started chanting ‘Om Namah Shivaaya‘ while imagining ‘Aatma Linga‘. The sound of the water and the chanting took me to a trance. I went through all that was troubling me. I touched and felt it. I looked at it straight eye to eye. Maybe I was running away from it for quite some time. When I encountered issues troubling me, my mind started telling me to overcome them. It began clearing the fog. Though the path to overcome that seemed quite far, at least I felt like walking towards it instead of running away from it. I sat there just staring at nature for some time.

I walked ahead like a wanderlust, searching for something. I stood silently in many places, just listening to my inner voice. While writing this, I sit under a tree next to the stream. I had never imagined travelling alone to an unknown place and being with myself. I thought I would never do that. But look at me now! I travelled to a remote place, sitting alone and feeling good about it. I realised the power of solo travel. Nothing can stop you from taking less travelled roads if one can travel independently and be comfortable and peaceful. You are a universe inside you – Aham Brahmasmi, sages, they say!

After spending some time there, I trekked ahead to find a place in the valley with abandoned chairs and tables. I sat there in silence again. After some time, I started listening to music. Got introduced to Merlin Babaji and Rajju Baba. Such diverse music and musicians, but both create music to let their thoughts out to the world. They say they use music to tell things that they can never express otherwise. Music sometimes makes my soul ache but, at the same time, keeps my heart beating. Mountains, peace, music and me – that’s all I needed.

I started trekking back towards Pink Floyd Cafe, where I was staying. After a long trek back, I found a cafe for lunch. I ordered Hakka noodles and Snickers chapati Nutella. I’m not even kidding – the dessert was out of the world. They put Snickers inside chapati, rolled it, fried it, and added Nutella. I relished it and catered to the food soul inside me. I started talking to the guy who manages the cafe. His family is in a place called Bhuntar. He goes twice a month to visit his wife, kids and parents. He lives in Tosh and manages the cafe. A couple of boys who work in the cafe were playing cricket. They all seemed happy and lost in their world. I was amazed at the adaptability that these guys have. Maybe the harshness of the climate, the mountains or the uncertainty of life make these guys different. After all, survival of the fittest is one hundred per cent apt in this region. I ordered a brownie and was lost in my world for some time, looking at the mountains, saw these boys playing cricket, and felt the thin, cold air gush through my face. I was in a trance; I returned to my room, tucked myself in the quilt, and knocked off.

Rain in the Himalayas

I woke up to the sound of thunder and rain. I came out to see the entire snow-capped mountains mystical. Rains showered on them while clouds passed through them unabashedly. 7 degrees and rains definitely call for a hot cup of chai! Again, it was a moment where I was lost sipping hot Himachal chai, starting at nothingness and wondering what tomorrow holds. A voice in me said to live in the moment and let tomorrow happen on its own. With the constant quest to forget yesterday, ignore tomorrow, and just live in the moment, my inward journey continues.

Vinay Bharadwaj

Vinay Bharadwaj

Filmmaker I Talk Show Host I Ex-Banker

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *