We often visit 'Sarahan' in Himachal. Not so long ago was my first time; mesmerised with the beauty of everything green and pure, the whole town was covered with clouds above and I could see the holy peak of Shrikhand Mahadev lit with rays of the sun. As I was exploring around - shooting a time-lapse, a bunch of kids from the village encircled me wanting to pose and get clicked. In course of a day we grew a bond, they took me to their secret places, shared wild fruits, chitter chattered, played around till it was time to depart with a promise to meet the other day after school.
The first time I had been there I was clueless about getting buses, where I'd go and how things would be. Nor did I know a thing about the place except the famous "Bhimakali temple", where Dusshehra is celebrated grandly.
On my way to Sarahan people asked me the purpose to travel solo from so far the answer to which was entwined in the beauty and energy around me that kept me company all the while.
Now that I think of this trip I feel glad not to drop the plan to solely travel which I once doubted. Now the thought of seeing them is always a bubble in my thoughts.
"A place where someone still thinks of you, thats a place you can call home" - Jiraya sensei.
Last year once again, Sonali and I traveled to Sarahan with lots of memories and excitement to see everyone. We went intending to spend Diwali and handover the prints of the photos I clicked during my first trip. Sonali framed the pictures beautifully by hand. ( I must say she is the best when it comes to craft and giving aways ). The spirit got doubled up seeing the sparkle in their eyes.
The weather took a flip - it had been raining a several days in line making it chilly, I felt like there was a chance of seeing the first snow of the season and so it happened the next day while we started for Khanash to meet everyone.
The rain kept us waiting all morning. So in the drizzle we left to roam the uphills. While saving our butts from the rain, here's a perfect frame that captured me.
We realised everything is uncertain in the hills, depending on the weather conditions and nothing else could have an upper hand, so we started for Khanash with no hard feelings for nature.
Being a child-like that Sonali is numerous times, she waved at an old couple soaking sun outside their house ( the weather ! I told you ), intrigued they called us over and we couldn't hold ourselves back to meet them. We shared our purpose of travelling and showed them the prints we had for the kids. Lucky we were that their grandson was in one of the frames, out of excitement Granny called everyone from the near by houses to introduce us.
With love they offered tea and food after which we moved forward to the next house where other kids lived. Euphoria - the smiles on seeing themselves in the pictures !
During our stay in the village we shared so many stories, helped Granny - Grandpa in preparing for Diwali, making garlands to decorate the house; cooked food with them, lend a hand in gathering stock for the winters to come and moreover shared a sweet - never-ending bond with all of them.
All the time Sonali and I were surrounded by kids who wanted to show us around. We played different games, laughed like maniacs teasing each other. Sonali still has the paintings she and Gungun did together in her diary.
I believe we are just a call away to the other person. How often do we greet each other ? or smile at a stranger ? Even though it can turn out that the person is a weirdo but, believe your instincts. They lead us to places - beautiful, bump us into souls - wonderful.
Let's open our doors and welcome every soul in our life and be kind to each other; for kindness is the most powerful possession.
How to Reach ?
Hop a bus from Chandigarh ISBT43 sector to Jeory which departs in the morning around 6 and evening as well. After a long "Roller coaster ride" to Jeory, take a bus and run to Sarahan which is just 30mins away from the Jeory bus-stand ( if you are alive after the breath-taking ride ).
What to do ?
Don't miss out the beautiful mornings. You can be lucky enough see clouds all over the town and fresh snow every hour on the peak of Shrikhand Mahadev of course if in the months from to.
Trek to Khanash and upper Sarhan. There are plenty of trails which goes from the bird sanctuary.
Ever heard of Bashal peak ? Its a sacred snow covered peak where no trails lead, only a local can be helpful as know to safely climb without getting eaten by bears. If you have time and will to explore do not miss the Bashal peak of Sarahan. They say there is a Cave where people live and stay for long.
Eat ! Eat ! Eat !
Rajma rice is the common food served as sumptuous meals. We still crave for Sanjay bhaiji's the momos and thukpa .
What to carry ?
Don't think of camping as risk of getting attacked by bears is more in this region. Carry warm clothes for night as it gets cold at night. ( Cuddles come in handy always ! ) In the month of November its freaking cold so do carry warm clothes and layer up to be at comfort.
Best time to travel ?
April to July September to November
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