Anything you already know is an understatement
The serene calmness that invades the soul, following a particularly treacherous bout of examinations is unparalleled. My euphoria knew no bounds when my father announced a family trip to Kashmir. I couldn’t imagine a happier end to an otherwise unpleasant set of events!
We boarded the flight to Srinagar, giddy with excitement. And as the plane neared the state capital, the snow-capped peaks made for a stunning breath taking view. I remember forgetting the worries of work undone and impending results. There was something in the enormity of its beauty that made your woes pale in significance. We deplaned to the biting icy wind of Kashmir, cheeks already crimson.
The next few days were spent in shameless awe of the beautiful structures of Chashme Shahi, Nishat Bagh and Shalimar Bagh. The weather was perfect, a light drizzle setting just the right tone. As far as the mammoth Dal Lake is concerned, it continued to render me speechless as I marvelled at the gigantic body of water, alive with shikaras. At night, when the shikaras were lit up, the twinkling lights would have my undivided admiration. I would sometimes shake my head and wonder if we were in India at all!
We also planned an excursion to Pahalgam. Unlike Gulmarg, which had become a huge tourist trap, Pahalgam was a literal delight. Fresh unadulterated snow, several inches deep lined the town. My childhood fantasy of building snowmen was soon realized. A snow fight ensued and I would like to add that I emerged victorious. Next, we gorged on goshtaba, minced meatballs prepared with curd, and mutton rogan josh, a delicate preparation of the most exquisite meat.
The few days I spent in the scenic locales of Srinagar, will forever be etched in my mind. Not only because it was respite from the sweltering examination heat but also because it left me in perpetual awe of the Kashmir Valley. The beauty so deeply ingrained in its wonderful people, cuisine and places will thaw the coldest of hearts. Since then, whenever someone mentions Srinagar, I can’t help but passionately extol its many virtues and recommend it excitedly to anyone who listens. In between the chatter and the buzz, I find myself returning to the Dal, reliving just one more bejewelled evening, on the water’s edge.
This entry has been shortlisted for Holidify’s Travelogue Writing Contest in association with Linger. The content and pictures may not be used without prior permission of the author.
Submitted by: Sabhya Kumar