I woke up into the light, Life had diminished for me. The mundane, repetitive life made me feel numb. The numbness in the mind made me weak, the potential to do more than what I can was beyond my control. I was starting to realize my eagerness in life seeping away. But then the thought of sprouting, the smell of earth was just too much overwhelming for me to quit.
Ooty is a place for lovers, the chilly and bright weather is a haven for every ethnic cultures who’ve found new love or has already found. What makes Ooty different from other honeymoon destination is that the accessibility and wide array of activities hustling up in the small town. To be honest this place is not for us, Trekkers. But the interesting thing about this trip was that we made it feel like trekking.
It was a 3 day trip. We boarded a train from our hometown to Coimbatore Jn. It was a 10 hour journey as we picked a fast passenger as our carrier. The train had less people traveling in. It was quite a pleasant journey. We were astounded to see that the other part of our state was so beautiful and we could see peacock’s nearby the track like domesticated ones. Finally we reached Coimbatore Junction. The station was vast and clean. I became a fan of the infrastructure as soon as I saw it. We got out of the station to see a different world covered by people of different thoughts, tradition, ethnicity and finally the “language”. We were like sitting ducks, there was no trace of English. It was better for us to reach Saudi Arabia than this. I started asking for directions in my broken Tamil. And we found different opinions on reaching our next destination, Mettupalayam.
We were to go to the New Bus stand to catch a bus to Mettupalayam. We waded through the ocean called Coimbatore. Finally, god forbid the place we reached the bus stand and we stopped to have food. Then Inquired about the buses to Mettupalayam. We freshened ourselves and hopped on to the bus. It was about a hour journey to the place. It was about midnight when reached and we asked a security guard about the whereabouts of our next journey to Udhagamandalam (aka Ooty).
The security guard was a malayali and he helped us about getting to Ooty. The fun thing about traveling to Ooty is that we get to travel in a Toy Train. In literal sense its not a Toy train. Its so named because it can seen in many cartoons. The Loco was a steam engine, An X Class Steam Locomotive. The journey in it was reminiscent, a million dollar journey. The train travels around 10 kmph. But time flies by so fast because the view en route is amazing. We were exhausted by taking pictures on the way. There was brief stops on the way to fill water for the engine. Then there was a 20 to 25 minute stop in Coonoor.
Then we reached Udhagamandalam.
The procedure to get tickets to Udagamandalam is sleepless attempt. First We are to be queued next to the Station Master. First come, first get policy. Then the Station master gives a token for number of people willing to travel, in our case it was four. Then we are to buy the tickets producing the token. The fare is unbelievably small, 15 rupees per person.
But the journey is worth more.
After we reached the destination, we were chased by brokers to hook us up with Hotel rooms (not a good bargain). We weren’t sure where to start. The list of places to visit was “big”. We then entered a cycling arena. There were tracks and the experience was awesome.
Then we saw Thread Gardens and the Ooty lake on the way. Then we decided to visit the Doddabetta Peak just 9 KM from the Ooty bus stand. We boarded a bus and then we reached the bus stop. To reach the peak we had to walk about 2 KM. We started walking and found company. Two people Shivam and Pankaj, they were on their way to the peak as well. We introduced ourselves to each other. We became friends and started to walk. We took a diversion on the way. To the jungle, It was dark, and we saw footsteps of unknown animals. We move forward and found ourselves in a dead end. The other side of the jungle was a cliff and a different place. We retraced back and moved along road and reached peak entrance. The place was swarming with shops, mainly eatables. We walked past them and then reached the ticket counter. The entry fee was 5 rupees. We walked towards the end of the fence and the view was good and our heart was filled with immense overflow of emotions. The idea of trekking was a god gifted one. From the telescope house we could see the Avalanche peak, Ooty town, Mukurty Peak. After staying staring in to oblivion our hands were numb and cold. We ate a lot. We had to eat to keep ourselves warm. Then we hired a car to Botanical Garden.
The Botanical Garden is a home for different types of flora and the place is well maintained. The place is perfect for a good evening walk.Then We exited the garden at around 7 PM. Then we wished luck to the two people we met. And we were off to Coimbatore jn and then to our natives.
Never wish to die, we have a lot of ground to cover.