|Monsoons hitting Pune was a great relief from the relentless and harassing heat wave. The hi-tech city’s 4-hour daily power cuts made us only just survive the summer season. With the monsoon, the climate cooled down. “Power Crises 2005” concluded to make way for an even severe “Power Crises 2006” – same time, same place; next year. The ministers can now breathe easy and continue to enjoy no-responsibility. Now, enough with my last rant on this issue for 2005. Let us get back to the main topic.|
When it rained outside the office windows, everybody’s hearts went out to Khadakwasla dam or Mulshi dam. After some longing for a soaking-wet experience, all of us decided to ride to Mulshi dam to enjoy an uninterrupted downpour.
Last week, we made the trip. Mulshi is approximately 50 km from Pune. We, in Pune, know Mulshi for its untouched beauty and off-course heavy rains. After much discussion, all of us agreed to leave for Mulshi at 10.30 a.m. IST sharp. Yes, IST means 2+ hours and we left right on time at 12:30 p.m. or so. Riding two on a bike, with helmets, rider and pillion, we safely started towards Mulshi. The initial few kilometers were meaningless with hardly any rains. When the first village arrived, after about 15 kilometers, it started pouring and we shed our jackets.
We made our first halt over a half-submerged bridge and gazed at the muddy waters for some time. With another halt at Tata’s winding roads, we reached Mulshi’s breathtaking waterfall – the main picnic spot. After parking our bikes, all of us walked on the banks of rushing waters towards the waterfall. Far beyond, there was a bigger waterfall making its path across the greens towards us. Filling our lungs with refreshing air, all of us savored the scene for a while.
Midstream, we saw a boulder jutting out. That had to be the spot. We balanced ourselves while walking towards the boulder. Soon, everybody got excited and started splashing water recklessly. Sahadev was the best at it. Ajay tried wearing a helmet to fend off water attacks. Nevertheless, we found ways to counter it and Ajay had to do away with the helmet. Mr. Prince used his cap to direct water at Sahadev. All of us enjoyed and later left the spot.
We then thought of the mouth-watering “Kanda-bhajis” we had on our earlier trip to Konkan. To find the same spot, all of us rode our bikes in the mist further away from Mulshi. Soon, the mist thickened. Enshrouded with heavy mist, we tried finding our way for a further 20 km. It was not to be. Our destination was still quite far. We made a halt at what appeared to be the topmost spot looking down a deep valley. Under the canopy, it went quite dark and we enjoyed a sudden barrage of increased downpour.
On our way back to Mulshi, Kamlesh’s keen eyes spotted a cottage over a hilltop. He enquired and to our blessed luck, we found ourselves waiting for hot “Kanda-bhajis”. Four plates were not quite filling but very refreshing. The person making the “bhajis” ran out of material and we had to return.
Back from Mulshi towards Pune, it was around 4.30 p.m. and our stomachs started rumbling. Fortunately, we had pre-decided the lunch spot. We quickly rode towards this hotel, parked our vehicles and went inside. Kamlesh and Ajay slipped into dry T-Shirts. Mr. Prince and Sahadev took off their jackets and revealed that they were still dry. That left Roland and me to shiver out the cold and wetness. We wondered how it would be to get wet again.
While ordering, Gaurav emphatically declared that "Egg Curry is the best". The food took time to arrive and when it did, it arrived in batches. When we ran out of “Bhaji”, the “Rotis” came and when the “Rice” went cold, the “Bhaji” came. We managed to fill our tummies and started back to Pune. After one and a half hour of riding and quick halts, we reached “Chandni Chowk”. Everybody dispersed after having a quick talk about how great it had been.
Thursday, July 07, 2005
at 11:52 PM.