Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Simply East -- New Year Celebration at Nagala

Simply East...

                              As far as i remember all my New Year used to start with a beautiful dream of  something happening with a great surprise.... this time it  was not a dream... woke up with the sound  of gushing forest streams... hearing the alarm sound of birds, opened my eyes  realizing  that this time its not a dream... opened my eyes  to see the beautiful Nagala filled with clouds....

The phrase “Luck Favor’s The Brave” is one simple line that suits the 14 brave souls, who said a big yes to face the after effects of “Thane”,

experienced a dream trek where they got the opportunity to see some extraordinary form of nature.
                                              On 31st early morning we left Koyembedu and reached the dam at 9.00A.M. The first surprise of the day, the DAM WAS OVERFLOWING and a stream of water separated us from climbing the dam’s wall. Impossible is never in the dictionary of CTC, we crossed the stream one after the other and started the journey. As soon as we entered the forest we realized that Nagala is filled with water and we gonna have some tough time crossing all the streams and so was the truth. The first crossing path had enough water to cover half of our body and the best part was the speed at which the stream was flowing…. Core trekkers of CTC was busy finding a way to cross while the Non- Swimmers and the fresher’s  were waiting eagerly for the next surprise J. The strongest chain ever in this world… “”HUMAN CHAIN”” was formed and we crossed the stream successfully. Meanwhile Kalirajan lost his footwear in the streams flow and Om dropped Narendar’s Digi cam in to the water while trying to capture the human chain. The owner of only SLR of the trip(Ofcourse its me ;-) ) was just thinking of taking out his camera to click these moments, but the moment Om dropped Naren’s cam  all the doors was shut for SLR to pop out .
                             After crossing the first stream we trekked for about an hour to reach the first pool which was filled with rushing water and we decided to take a break for breakfast. A separate group of 8-10 people were already there and thinking of a way to cross the pool. We had cakes and chocolates for breakfast meanwhile the organizers were as usual busy finding out a way to cross. After 20min of break we decided to climb up the hill and cross the first pool to reach the dead end pool. We started climbing up hill and slowly the path was becoming steeper and filled with rolling stones. With few slips and twists we reached the ridge which was the real test for our patience and stamina. Like a bouncing ball our heart’s started popping out as one by one crossed the ridge and finally we took a little break after the ridge and meanwhile the ever tired less organizers started looking for the path to reach the dead end pool. After ten minutes of break we decided to climb further up and started the journey again. Now came the jaw dropping view of the Nagala hills as we reached the top of the hill, the grass was above our heads in the top and the view was stunning. Finally we managed to find a trail to get down the hill and reached the stream after about one and a half hour of walk.  Again we took a break and meanwhile Sankar and Shon decided to check the path for dead end pool. The day was already half passed and all were a bit physically tired coz of climbing the hill up and down. We filled out our bottles there and took some rest till Sankar and Shon return back. After almost an hour they both came back to say that reaching dead end pool is gonna take more time and there is no place to camp. So we decided to climb up to the sliding pool.
                                        Skipping the dead-end pool and camping at the sliding pool was the best decision and turning point of the day. As soon as we reached the sliding pool Sankar jumped in to the pool from somewhere around 10m height. It almost stopped the heart of all new comers and once all the swimmers jumped in to the pool we realized this is what enjoying the nature is all about.
Open sky, free flowing water, exploring mind, adventurous heart and god’s crazy creations…. What are you waiting for friend go and have fun!!!!!!!
                                                       Sankar (The organizer) didn’t even showed sign of tired ness and started cooking. While others are having fun in water, Sankar and Sethu preparing the vegetables for cooking, me and Nithya went in search for fire wood. Everybody was getting ready for LUNCH. After making everything ready for cooking me and sethu went for a dip in the nearby stream. Even before we came back people started the lunch L the hot hot Bhel puri was getting over quickly. I and sethu got our share. The North Indian chef will have to seek some advice from Sankar in making Bhel PuriJ. Meanwhile Sankar quickly realized that this will not be enough for all and with no time the “avul payasam” was ready.

Kudos to Sankar for his presence of mind and the quick decision and executing it in no time…. I mean it was a high quality leadership attitude which he showed it at the right time. The group was really gifted to have Sankar as leader in the troopJ.
                                          Now the troop regained the lost energy after the lunch and then started the photo session. Finally the SLR was out and people started to pose for their profile pic.

The place where we camped was surrounded by hills and with an open sky above us, reminded me of the old type village home where there will be an opening in the center of the homeJ. While everyone was busy taking stills….. Anand was busy vomiting coz of little sickness… Soon his vomiting news became the talk of the day and his name was rewritten and “THE VOMMITTER”. After all the fun Sankar said it’s time for camping and everybody started to help Sankar and co to build the camp. Then came the dinner time and once again its Sankar’s magic with hot hot maggi noodles. Nithya and Lavanya were helping with cutting the vegetables while me, Vishal, Kali and Vijay was busy stealing the carrots. We did contribute for the dinner by holding the torch lights J…. Lavanya was an expert in cutting carrots for noodles, she did took some lessons to Vishal for cutting carrots and tomatoes which Vishal will never forget J. While dinner was being prepared, Mani opened the extra noodles packet and mixed the masala and prepared an appetizer for which all the remaining 13 hands reached for a share and the inventor of the appetizer was left only with the masalaJ.  At around 7.00p.m the dinner was ready and everybody had stomach full of tasty-tasty Maggi. At 8.40 it was time to get in to the tents as the clouds started to show signs of rain. Everybody except Vishal, Shon and Narendar went inside the tent to have a tight sleep while these trio was out discussing the Lokpal’s  futureJ. After an hour suddenly these trio came inside both the tents and shouted Happy New Year guys…. Wake up wake up!!!!  As everybody was trying to wake up just then Sankar shouted “Vishal its only 10.30 now, please go and sleep”. 
                                                   Then it was pin drop silence as everybody slept in tiredness…. suddenly some movement in the yellow tent. Someone was trying to get out of the tent and started having the left out Maggi at early morning 1.00A.M. Wondering who the guy was… none other than our VommitterJ. It was not just once in the night he again went out at 3 to play his second innings. At 3.30 it started to drizzle and slowly the drizzle became heavy down pour at 4.00, everybody woke up and was covering their own bags with half of the mind still sleeping and half of the mind enjoying the forest rain inside the tent and welcoming the New Year’s morning in Nature’s styleJ. At 5 the rain stopped and we were back to sleeping business and the vommitter back to eating businessJ.
                                                The New day started with lovely clouds covering the Nagala hills and the fully recharged troop getting ready for a dip in the sliding pool. It was shon who started the first slide and Narendar the second and one by one followed him.

After an hour of fun and group pic in the sliding pool, we entered the mighty magic pool. This was indeed the nature’s magic.

Had some good fun time teasing everybody, Shon showing some of his diving skills, Narendar trying to learn diving and got some nice water massageJ. Some jumped up from the top, experiencing the once in a life time opportunity. Then it was tea time, Sankar was ready with Tea and rusk for the fellow troopers. Had the left out Maggi and Tea for breakfast. Soon the rain started and we once again went inside our tent and this time no body was in a mood to sleep so it became the tea talk period. Taking pics of some funny expressions from Shon and Vishal, Sankar trying his best with the SLR, slowly our friendship bond between us grew and within an hour we were having fun with each other like we are all childhood buddies. The vommitter still eating the left out maggi and some posing for the camera in the rain and some wanted to jump again in the magic pool along with the rain, it was all happening in the middle of the forest forgetting all the city noise, work pressure, family issues, girlfriend problem, boyfriend torture…., all the day today activities was in a hold outside Nagala. Once the rain stopped, we decided to walk along the stream towards the 7 obstacles since we didn’t trekked much in the previous day. We packed our bags inside our tent and started the march towards the seven obstacles and this time the SLR guy decided to take his machine out and walk with the stream. Within few minutes of our walk we found the first water fall which was a jaw dropping scene and a gift to my third eye.

After a fun dip in the fall we continued our walk to find the second fall which was higher than the first one and more beauty as well.

Then came the final one and the heart stopping one. Falling from about 15m height with silver shine waters, this was a treat to the eyes friends.

 Our enthu to have fun and explore things got popped up after crossing every water fall. The stream from the fall… the trees covering the sky completely just allowing the sun rays to pass through the gaps between the branches was like a dream guys. It was a dream trek for everyone. Thane blessed Nagala with so much water which gave us extraordinary once in a life time experience. Time was the only reason we returned back to our camp site and prepared our return journey. We packed our bags and with 45 min after our start we reached the first pool and had our lunch, once again it was Sankar’s magic spell making Avul with pepper and ghee. Had some chit chat time and some had a dip in the first pool as well. After lunch we started back our return journey and reached the dam at 5.30 and had the final group snap.

The day ended in a loud laugh when Vijay enquired about the van with the little children in English and in BBC slang “There is a van in the village right???......”.
                    We all headed back to our van bidding bye to Nagala hills and started the van at 7, reached uthukottai where Vishal, Narendar and Om said bye to all to head towards Bangalore via Tirupati. We had tummy full dinner at uthukottai and started our journey back to Chennai. Just when we thought all the fun is over Sethu and Kalirajan said no guys it’s time for a dance. With Sethu and Kalirajan starting the dance party with Osthi songs, myself  joining from kalasala and Nithya joined from Evan di unna pethan… till Chennai it was a mix up of Kuthu and hip hop dances . Finally from Koyembedu, one by one gave farewell to the trip and to the co trekkers.
 End of the day it was the best day of my life, experiencing the nature’s beauty, having fun in god’s craziest creation ever, increasing my FB’s friend list, improving my clicking skills… it was fun fun and fun. More than a trek it was something special on a special day.
I would like to thank Sankar, Vishal, Shon and Mani for organizing this once in a life time opportunity.  I was really shocked when Sankar said this was his first experience in organizing a trek. The kind of care and responsibility he took was amazing and his leadership qualities were on top like of all.

Looking forward for lot of treks and fun in this great year :-).