Given that Delhi weather becomes similar to inside of an earthen tandoor in the month of June, for the second consecutive year I did what every middle class Delhiite does: go to a hill station in Himachal Pradesh decided after a meticulous procedure of research with special emphasis on affordability and number of leaves sanctioned from the office. Last year, I went to Shimla, and this year, I went to Dharamsala to enjoy a sudden drop of temperature from a burning 38 degree Celsius in Delhi to an icy-cold 33 degrees in Dharamsala.
Dharamsala is a green, hilly place in Himachal Pradesh famous for the fact that his holiness the Dalai Lama used to live there for some time during his exile, and that now there are a lot of restaurants serving good Tibetan food with names like Thenthuk and Gyathuk which formed the basis of a marathon of lame jokes on the same. I went with three other male friends, and we decided for Dharamsala because we found an affordable hotel with a great view from our balcony to enjoy while having a drink (or may be two, or any random number onwards of ten) in the evening when it’s totally dark outside and we realise that view ke naam pe toh kat Gaya BC.
We survived a 12-hour back-breaking sleepless bus journey in a Himachal Roadways bus (with seats which oscillated back-and-forth making squeaky noises for minutes together every time the bus ran over a speed-breaker) to reach our hotel. The first place on the list was Bhagsu falls, which was more of a running water tap than a waterfall, though the pool at the end of it had balls-numbingly cold water, although we didn’t decide to verify that particular adjective as me and my friends still have hopes of getting married and having kids, so we went only knees-deep into that. There was also a free common over-crowded swimming pool in the Bhagsu temple premises, and we had a gala time playing in the water, only to come out at regular intervals to wipe off the pubes and insects from our oral cavities.
The evening was reserved for the real purpose of the trip: getting wasted with moderately-priced whiskey with the feeling of ‘being on a vacation’. Of course the conversations took amazing twists and turns with increasing blood ethanol levels, and I won’t be able to recollect and write most of the things we talked about, let’s just say that it was a 7-hour long session involving cuss words, women, more cuss words, confessions, and random moments of clinking glasses with either “ispe to cheers banta hai!” or “abey ab har baat pe cheers karoge?“.
The final morning of a two-mornings-long trip, we went to Bir-Billing, the highest paragliding destination in Asia. There is a vertical descent of around 1100 metres with a parachute, and obviously excited, we discussed what we would say before the jump so that the selfie camera would record it as we had paid 500 rupees extra for that. I decided on ‘Volar Morghulis‘, although something sounding similar to “Aeeeggghhh Mummmmyyyyyy” came out, because darr ke aage jeet and obvious wetting of pants hai. Nevertheless, it was a breath-taking sight from the top, and I had a perfect walking-on-the-ground landing too.
So, paragliding was obviously the best part of my weekend getaway, but I can’t help but wonder, what did the first person smoke up before having the thought “hmmm, nothing could possibly go wrong if I jump off this hill and descend down a kilometre with a parachute. After all, Volar Morghulis!“.
That, and also, did his selfie camera have audio recording feature?