Traveling, exploring, visiting new places, new people has been an essential part of my life. By travel I don’t mean to say just visiting foreign lands or an alienated place, but visiting to all those places where you haven’t been to and intrigues you is traveling, for me atleast.
Being an English (Hons.) student I have studied quite a few essays like “Of travel” by Bacon, “Walking tour” by Robert louis Stevenson and many more imparting the significance of traveling, it’s educational value and the impact it has on thoughts and working. But never in all these periods of my traveling and exploring did I write something about my experiences, adventures and most importantly what I learned. The reason I guess is that I hadn’t experienced something as thrilling and mesmerizing like I experienced few days ago.
It’s been around 6-7 months since I first visited this heaven, called Varanasi or rather Benares. Benares is an entire world in its own, the people, the dialect, the food, the narrow yet lively alleys and not to forget the affair of ghats and the mighty Ganga, everything here has a sense of uniqueness in it. The simplicity that dwells in every nooks and corner intensifies the beauty of this gem.
Not fond of modern marvels, the natural and historical beauties seduce me more. The amalgamation of natural textures and the ease with which they have adopted mordern complexities inspires me.
If you ever have been in Benares, then you are ought to know the Ramnagar bridge, the nosering that adorns Ganga, which during sun set appears to be draped in shades of red and orange like a long flow of Banarasi saree. On one side this bridge is Ramnagar fort and to its opposite are the Ghats aligned like a crescent.
That sunday could have been just like all other Sundays, which I used to spent sleeping but this time around it was something different. I wasn’t alone and wasn’t spending my sunday in solitude. I had got myself a companion which my other friends already had, a ravishing beauty, who was going to satisfy all my needs and pleasures. I had got myself a brand new and glittering cycle!!
I was itching to do something adventurous now. Park, one of my two friends along with Sucheta, who were also my partners for the forthcoming ride, suggested an idea to go to the Ramnagar bridge riding on our companions. It matched my adventurous instincts and then I convinced Sucheta to come along with us.
Moments later the three of us were riding together frivolously, swirling and dodging around in traffic. The real ride still awaited us, the adventure was going to begin.
While pedaling against the slope to reach the zenith, there came a point in the midst when our legs had given up, the din of horns increased, we were hindering their drive and pace. Each and every pedal was an excruciating task. Our body now also had given up, the mind had already announced it’s decision to return back but inside our bosom, was a burning desire to reach on the top of that bridge. I was recollecting my memories of the last scene of “Joh jeeta wahi sikander”, and in that moment of invigoration, I raised my figure and started pedaling. Soon I realised I wasn’t Aamir khan and this wasn’t a cycling track. Slow pedaling was all that I could do or rather my legs permitted me to do.
Now station of our cycle train was getting closer. Just the imagination of the picturesque motivated us and made us pretermit all our pains and problems.
Moments later when we reached our destination and got down from our cycles, our legs were shaking and visages glittering.
The mind had abruptly refused to believe what the eyes were viewing. The ginormous bridge standing atease against the reverential Ganga. Each and every drop of Ganga whispered the secrets it had gathered across all the Ghats, to the fort of Ramnagar. Ganga like a younger sister chirped and played and the fort like an elder brother purred to every utterance of her. The setting sun was displaying it’s array of different colours. The bridge gave this scene a perfect frame to capture. Every city has its heaven, Benares had its here, right now.
The clock kept ticking, we in tranquility didn’t even realise that we had already surpassed our time limits. We picked up our cycles, though not ready to part away from this vista. The call of our clocks had to be heard. Turning our cycles we bid our adieu.
The path which earlier had offered all sorts of hurdles now embraced us with open arms. The wind that was against, now kissed our foreheads. The wheels were rolling and the sun was setting, we were ready to elope together in the hustle and bustle again.