Life Lessons from Dental Materials

Since childhood we have been asked to Find the Moral of the story. Our Language teachers especially would tell us the Implied Deeper meanings of the poetries over and above their apparent meaning (and this made me love Languages even more). And then I am a student of Yash Sir😅- who would bring up the best of Analogies between Chemistry and Philosophy! So now, I guess, my mind is tuned to think a bit deeper about things and it always amazed me how everything in nature can teach us the way of Life!

Last week while I was reading Dental Materials, I realized that it also teaches us some lessons for life.

  • Noble one Gains:

The more active Metal becomes Anode and gets corroded, while the Cathode is the metal that is more Noble and Gains the metal deposit.

But one important thing to note is that a Cathode cannot do anything alone. It is the Anode that produces the Positive ions and enables the Cathode to gain anything. So, Everyone is Important!

And being Anode or Cathode is a relative thing. With respect to one metal you may be Cathode but tomorrow, in front of some other metal, you may be the Anode! No position is permanent. Always treat others well and learn something from everyone!

  • What is Stress?

In the section about Properties of Dental Material, we read the Definition of Stress which goes: “When a force acts on a body, tending to produce deformation, a resistance is developed within the body to this external force. The internal resistance within the body to this external force is called Stress.”

Maybe an object cannot control the Physical Stress it undergoes, but we Human Beings surely can control the Mental stress that We Produce in our heads against any external situation.

One more thing I noticed here was that such thoughts come only when I am reading subjects like DM which I find quite boring😅. Because I do not remember learning something like this from Pathology because it itself hooks me enough to not think of any philosophy😂.

Yes, it is not the right approach, I need to stay Focused. But help me out here. Tell me something you do to Stay Focused. But this does have one advantage. Now, I will never forget the definition of Stress! Connecting new facts with ideas that are already clear in your mind, helps you to Remember things Easily.

Usually, I keep such thoughts to my diary but this time I wondered why not share it! Tell me honestly, did you like this blog or found it Wierd? Tell me you do this too! If you also learnt something from Normal things, do share it with me in the Comments!

In The Big Bang Theory, Dr. Sheldon Cooper shares in his show ‘Fun with Flags’ that “If our friend the Flag has taught me anything, its to Go where the wind takes you. As long as you remain firmly attached to a rigid pole.”

Thank You!

Learnings From Eucrasia

Eucrasia is the Annual Sports Week and Cultural fest of my college. This year I participated in Food Stall, KhoKho, Debate, Dodgeball and Anchoring. All of these taught me the following different lessons: 1.Food Stall You can’t always do everything alone. Understood the importance of a Team and how to delegate work. One’s weakness should […]

Learnings From Eucrasia

Appointment with Snow? E-06 Manali Memoir

After coming back from Solang Valley, we played some group Games. One of which was Maggi Making Completion!

We were divided in 3 teams. The team to make it Fastest and The Tastiest won.

We had to do something creative with Maggi with the limited things we had there. Some added Onions to the tadka while some added a Chilly and Garlic flavor. My teammate had Mayonese that her Mom had given her to eat with her Theplas! #gujju. So we used it for decorating along with Kurkure and Chips which added a very crispy touch. I can go on an on about this as 1. Its about Maggi💗 and 2. It was a dream-come-true activity to Make Maggi with a group of friends on a Mountain!

But you remember I mentioned that ordering those Brownies was a big mistake?! That’s because my stomach had been upset after we returned. Due to the strike, the crowd was much less than normal, so the brownies I got must have been stale, or I guess so. Even though Maggi is my favorite food and I got to make it on a Mountain, I could eat just 2 spoons of it..

Next day we were supposed to go to the Bhrigu Lake. But to get there, half way has to be covered by Taxi. But as all Taxi drivers were on strike, they took us to one other place where we could play in the Snow.

When we just started walking, someone told us the news that Maggi had been banned in India! (Remember the Maggi ban of 2015?) This was a heartbreaking news.

All this while I was not feeling my 100%. My stomach was still upset. And as the sun rose overhead, I felt weaker. There was one other girl who was much more ill than me. At one point she got nauseous and vomited. So the camp leaders arranged for a car to take her and her bestfriend back to the camp. I also decided to go back with them.

We returned and took rest. I felt really fit by the evening. There were 2 lovely dogs at this camp. The fierce female was named Laila. The other one was not actually Majnu but he did behave like one😄, so we spent some time playing with our Laila-Majnu!

We also played Sattodiyu after everyone returned.

My friends told me about the fun they had playing in the snow. Apparently it was quite a difficult trek. Very narrow and slippery paths had too be crossed. I was already regretting my decision of not making it. I told myself that I had acted much weaker that day and that the main attraction of coming to Manali was to get to play with snow and I did not do it! I hate it when I get sick on trips! One overpriced brownie costed me my first appointment with Snow and probably my Last one with Maggie!I regret that decision till date but I also know that I had to listen to my body in that moment.. If there is anything positive about it, I would say that it gives me a reason to visit Manali again!😅

There are reasons to visit Manali in every Season! With perfect weather in Summers and Springs, it plays host to Trekkers. In monsoon, everyone headed to Ladakh and Spiti passes through it. And Winters, they bring out the best of Manali. It is most appropriate for Skiing in winters.

That was the last day of the Camp. The Camp fire that night was the most special. After the singing, dancing and joking like everynight, we took contact information of the friends we had made there. The camp fire is incomplete without a mug of Hot Chocolate! Drinking the warm chocolaty milk in the cold of the night under the stars, was an absolutely delightful experience!

One of the most vivid memories of the trip was this: Every night, after the lights-off Kenny would shout “Goodnight Baju Wali Tent” to our neighbours and then they would reply back the same way😂. Kenny had the Energy, Naughtiness and innocence, perfect balanced in a way, that she had won everyone’s heart at the camp. On this trip, she taught me that there is a lot more fun in singing songs in a Besura manner rather than singing it the way it is supposed to be sung!

Return Journey in Train:

This time the whole Desert part was covered at night. So weather was not a problem. But there was another, more serious, problem this time.

This time the booking of seats was such that all our camp participants were divided among many Boggies. In our dabba, our group of 7 was the only compartment related to the camp. All others were strangers. The camp leader gave us many tips- keep most precious luggage on Upper berths with you while you sleep; most responsible ones should take the lowest berth; do not keep phone on charging near windows when the train has stopped and many more. The camp leaders kept coming from time to time and made sure everything was okay. Above everything, they made us trust ourselves and reassured that nothing bad would happen and in any trouble, they would be just one call away.

The one thing you miss the Most while you are on the Mountains is Pizza. And we were Surprised by a treat of pizza for dinner on the Train! (Most memorable Pizza I have had!)

So,from taking care of our Luggage, our seats and dealing with Vendors and beggars, there were many Challenges but that has what has made it very comfortable for me to travel alone in trains today.

“Its always the same with Mountains. Once you have lived with them for any length of time, you Belong to them. There is no escape.”

– Ruskin Bond.

Links to the previous blogs in this series:

E1: https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/22/reaching-manali/

E2:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/24/meet-manali_-e-02-manali-memoir/

E3:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/26/jogini-falls_e-03-manali-memoir/

E4:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/27/old-manali-town-and-shopping-_e-04-manali-memoir/

E5:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/30/river-crossing-at-top-camp_e-05-manali-memoir/

Planning for Trek:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/18/planning-for-manali-trek/

My other Travel Blog:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2019/09/18/wanna-get-lehd/

So, when are you going to Manali?! Plan it as soon as the Lockdown ends! And when you do, don’t forget to bring Cherries for me!😉

Thank you for reading!

River Crossing at Top Camp_E-05 Manali Memoir

Good Morning! The first thing to do today is to fold the Sleeping Bag and keep in its cover. If your sleeping bag is like mine and if you have done this before, you know how tough and painful this task is😭. But for me, my next task was equally difficult- that was to wake Kenny up😂! After these 2 victories, I took my brush and went to the Stream to sit there peacefully for the last time.. We had our Breakfast and got ready to leave for the Top Camp.

When we started walking, we were greeted by many groups of pink cheeked Mountain kids going to school! The road was beautiful.

We sang songs, played games and enjoyed our way to the top camp at Kulang which is at height of 8000 ft.

“Out of the city and over the hill,
Into the spaces where Time stands still,
Under the tall trees, touching old wood,
Taking the way where warriors once stood;
Crossing the little bridge, losing my way,
But finding a friendly place where I can stay.
Those were the days, friend, when we were strong
And strode down the road to an old marching song
When the dew on the grass was fresh every morn,
And we woke to the call of the ring-dove at dawn.
The years have gone by, and sometimes I falter,
But still I set out for a stroll or a saunter,
For the wind is as fresh as it was in my youth,
And the peach and the pear, still the sweetest of fruit,
So cast away care and come roaming with me,
Where the grass is still green and the air is still free.”

-Ruskin Bond

The location of this campsite was also very Beautiful. A river with its freezing cold water was flowing parallel to the place. This is how it looked from above.

Our camp leader here was a strong young Lady! What is amazing about women here is that they love Knitting. Our camp leader would knit a piece of woolen wear even While Walking!

River Crossing:

In the afternoon, Adventure activities were scheduled. First we had a meeting where we were instructed what to do while River crossing. They guided us on how to hold the rope, at what angle to walk etc.

Then they made groups of 5-6 people and numbered them in sequence of going. Safety belts were tied. The time each team took to cross the river To and Fro would be recorded. Those who did it fastest won.

No matter how many swimming pools you have lapped across in your life, putting the first step in river water is definitely scary but its Thrilling! The water was very very cold and flowing with great force. We had to hold the rope and walk across the river. The activity did need more Team Coordination than I had Anticipated!

I really enjoyed crossing a river (like this) probably for the First time in my life!

Flying Fox:

In the evening, was the most fun and adventurous activity, Flying Fox. A rope was tied from a higher place on one side and a lower height at a tree on other side.

We climbed up to the starting point, got the protective gear on and took off, sliding along the rope to the opposite side where we had to jump from a little height to land on the ground.

Solang Valley:

Next day, in the morning, we left for Solang Valley. The Solang Valley is supposed to be the most enjoyable place in Manali as it offers the best Paragliding experience along with other activities like Horse Riding, Parasailing, Zorbing and Ropeway.

But unfortunately some strike was going on and all the activities in this tourist attraction place were closed. Only the ropeway, which was probably run by the Government, was working but the only attraction it provided was to see snow from far- the Fare and the queue for which was way too much!

Anyway, we had to have our food at this Valley which offered 2 restaurants. It was a bit disappointing. But we placed our orders. My friends ordered burgers and hotdogs and I chose a Brownie.

I chose a Brownie. This proved out to be the Worst Decision I had ever made!

Why? Read the next blog to find out!😄

Links to other blogs in this series:

E1: https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/22/reaching-manali/

E2:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/24/meet-manali_-e-02-manali-memoir/

E3:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/26/jogini-falls_e-03-manali-memoir/

E4:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/27/old-manali-town-and-shopping-_e-04-manali-memoir/

Planning for Trek:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/18/planning-for-manali-trek/

My other Travel Blog:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2019/09/18/wanna-get-lehd/

Old Manali town and Shopping _E-04 Manali Memoir

In the last blog, I talked about the difference between Trekker and Tourists and in this one we are going to do all the Touristy activities, ofcourse by walking.

Today we are headed to the Old town of Manali, we will visit some famous spots and then do some shopping at the Mall Road.

You wake up and the Mountains greet you Good Morning!

Manu Temple:

As we start walking towards the town, we first stopped at the Manu temple. It is such a beautifulWooden temple with intricate carvings. This is the only temple dedicated to Sage Manu.

The peace when you enter the temple has Divine Energy!

Outside the Manu temple, there are many fruit vendors who sell Fresh Cherries. And by Fresh, I mean just-plucked-from-the-trees-fresh! Those were the Yummiest and the Juiciest cherries I have had in my life!

The man you see here was plucking the cherries when I clicked this picture!

Vashisht Kund:

The Vashisht temple is around 4000 years old. The Vashisht Kund is believed to be created by Lakshmana. Lord Rama’s younger brother did not want his Guru Vashisht to walk long for a bath. Hence he shot one arrow in the ground and the hot water spring emerged.

The water of the spring is rich in minerals like Sulphur and is good for the skin. There are separe rooms for males and females.

Our initial plan was to just dip our feet and wash our face. But one of us dropped a pair of sunglasses in the Kund😂. So, had to get in and search them underwater!😅

Near the Vashisht temple, there are many shops but one thing I found amazing was Fish Spas. Small fishes eat away the dead skin from your feet thus providing you with Pedicure! (Today this is a fairly known concept but 5 years ago, I had not heard about it.)

Hadimba Temple:

The temple of the Godess of Nature- Hadimba Devi is rightly located in thick Cedar forest. The temple usually has a long line of devotees from all over the nation. Even with increasing commercial activities in the town, Hadimba temple remains the Heart of Manali.

Hinduism comes closest to being a nature religion. Rivers, rocks, trees, plants, animals, and birds all play their part, both in mythology and everyday worship. This harmony is most evident in remote places like this, and I hope it does not loose its unique character in the ruthless urban advance.

Ruskin Bond

Mall Road:

After visiting all the places and walking so much, the first thing we did on reaching Mall Road was Eating Lunch! You get a lot of variety here. Momos are a must try!

Manali is known for its Handicrafts especially the Handloom products. The traditional multicoloured Himachali caps are my Favourite❤!

People also get Embroidered Kinnauri shawls as Souvenirs. Woolen kurta with their tradition prints are also really nice.

Other popular items sold are inlaid Silver jewelry, antique items and Tibetian art pieces.

The soles of my shoes got damaged. So I had to buy waterproof Sandal shoes from there. They were very tough and lasted 3 years!

The Leather and Woolen products are of good quality.

Fruits, fruit products, Saffron, Dry Fruits, Apricot oils and Honey are among the Must buys from Himachal.

I also got wooden keychains with my name written in Calligraphy.

Back to Camp:

After visiting all these places and now after buying a lot of stuff, walking back to the camp was really Painful! We were completely drained and took the maximum number of breaks on the way.

After reaching the camp, we freshened up and then had a freshly prepared, hot dinner which was real delight!

We sat under the stars for a while. Then repacked our bags with all the things we just bought because this was the last day at this Beautiful Basecamp.

Next we leave for the Top camp where a lot of Fun, adventure activities are waiting for us. Be prepared!

Links to the previous blogs in this series:

E1: https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/22/reaching-manali/

E2:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/24/meet-manali_-e-02-manali-memoir/

E3:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/26/jogini-falls_e-03-manali-memoir/

Planning for Trek:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/18/planning-for-manali-trek/

My other Travel Blog:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2019/09/18/wanna-get-lehd/

Jogini Falls_E-03 Manali Memoir

Hello! In today’s blog, I talk about a visit to a local village in Manali on the way to Jogini waterfall, then my experience with Rock climbing and how Trekking is a different experience from traveling.

The morning started with a Yoga Session admist tall trees! After that we got ready, kept the Camera on charging before Breakfast. Everything else was delicious but the 15-year old me did not like to finish the compulsory portion of Traditional, Manali- special Porridge. (Today, thanks to Rujuta, I understand its value and would probably Devour it!

After getting ready with Raincoat, Sunglasses and water bottle in a small bag, all the participants got ready in line for the trek.

As we started walking, we crossed some beautiful local farms with local varieties of Spinach and Cabbages etc. in them.

A local village:

On the way, we crossed a beautiful village. The people there used the Energy from flowing stream to run the Chakki that grind their Grains! How amazing is that!

Most people of Manali are into Farming and now into Tourism and Handicrafts.

The women there wear a dress called Pattu. These are colorful woven pieces they wrap around their shoulders. You will see a lot of women carrying baskets full of grass or cattle fodder etc. on their backs. Their cows and buffaloes are huge!

That day we had a local group leader-Louis, who was like a real life version of Krishh. He had trekked the Jogini falls atleast 100 times by then and watching him jump from one rock to other was just astonishing! Getting to know such people and talking to them during the small breaks in between the trek is the best part about Trekking!

Jogini fall is named after Godess Jogini whose temple at its base is considered a Shakti Peeth.

Can you see how tiny the humans look in front of nature!

As you walk through the foliage and Finally reach the Fall, the sound of the water gushing down from a huge height has the power to cut you off from everything else in the world. You look at the water wetting the rocks while beautifully creating small Rainbows! It’s a delight to feel the cool air coming from the fall, bringing small droplets of water with it!

After a little photo session, we walked back to the campsite for Lunch.

In the evening, we went for Rock Climbing session. We were divided in 2 batches. Then the instructor showed how to place our feet on the rocks while climbing and Rappelling. While watching, rappelling looked scary but when my turn came, I realized that even climbing was not as easy! But it was amazing. And it felt great after it was done!

Trekker v/s Tourist:

That day, our instructors told us about the difference between a Trekker and a Tourist. Both are different and each has it’s own beauty.

Tourists come here to relax and for vacationing while trekkers come for adventure and to toughen up. We are here to live a life without many luxuries. When you walk all day, you realize how big a luxury a car or even a cycle is.

Trekkers get to know the deep Interiors of a place. Trekking takes you through the small villages and farms where you meet the locals and understand their lifestyle. These Interiors are not even sometimes accessible to normal tourists.

This aunty was very jolly! She talked freely with us and after we clicked pictures with her, she asked me if she can put on my sunglasses and get herself clicked!😃

And once you become a trekker, you develop a kind of dislike for places that are “the main tourist attraction spots” 😅 mainly because of the crowd these places have!

Tourists travel on roads in hired vehicles while you learn to find your path, which rock to step on and which slope to leave.

While most tourists eat out in restaurants, trekking requires you to eat Healthy food that too as hot as possible.

The best part is, trekkers get to stay in Tents, very very close to nature while tourists stay in their 3 or 5 star hotels.

The friends you make and the memories you create with them during each activity is an added advantage!

Live close to nature and your spirit will not be easily broken, for you learn something of Patience and Resilience. You will not grow restless, and you will never feel Lonely. “

– Ruskin Bond

How was this one? Are you ready for shopping and Masti in the Upcoming blog?! See you soon.

Link to the previous 2 blogs of the series:

E-01 https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/22/reaching-manali/

E-02 https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/24/meet-manali_-e-02-manali-memoir/

Thank you.

Meet Manali_ E-02 Manali Memoir

The Base Camp:

Manali is a place where probably every nature lover wants a Retirement Home! Even crores of worth of Flats in cities can not give one the Tranquility and Pleasure of staying in such a place! When I got to live in this freaking Apple Orchard, I was the happiest! Let me give you a quick description of the Campsite. And then read on about some interesting facts about Manali.

Its an Apple Orchard (yes I said it for the 4th time!) and between the trees are the Tents. A huge stream flows behind the tents and the sound of its flowing water can be heard at all points😇! Water in it is coming directly from the Glaciers and it is Freezing cold!

Whenever we got time, my friends and I would go and sit on the rocks over this stream and enjoy! Moreover, we even started having our Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on the stream! That is an experience I will exactly remember my whole life!

Orientation:

The first Orientation meeting is the most important. It is addressed by the Camp Director, Dr. Madhusudan who was a scientist at ISRO, Ahmedabad! He founded ANALA- Ahmedabad Nature Lovers Association, initially to protect the trees at Law Garden and eventually they started many ecological activities, including these camps.

Every year, for some months, he would come and stay in Manali with his beloved German Shepherd named Vasu! (#goals)

Madhu sir talked about many interesting things related to Manali.

  • Manali gets its name as Manu’s Aalay i.e. homeland of Sage Manu. The writer of Manusmriti- Manu Rishi, saved the Vedas and rehabilitated the Earth after a massive Flood. There is a beautiful temple to worship him in Old Manali.
  • Manali and the surrounding areas are believed to be home to the Saptarishi.
  • What we today know as Manali is made of 3 adjacent hills each with their own temple: Old Manali- Manu Temple; Vashishtha- Vashistha temple; Dhungri- Hadimba temple.
  • During the British rule in India, Manali was a favorite destination of the Officers especially during Summer. Eventually many of them stayed here, married locals and now Manali offers the experience of a Global Village. Some of its riverside cafes offer every cuisine from traditional Himachali food to Italian, Thai, Chinese, British and Tibetian.
  • The people of Manali speak Mandiali version of Western Pahari language, derived from Sanskrit and Prakrit. Many people of Tibet have made Manali home. So Tibetian, Hindi and English can also be heard.
  • All locals own atleast one Apple Tree.
  • Manali has a lot of interesting plants. There are trees like Fir, Deodar, Rhododendrons, Maple, Oak, Kail, Spruce, Pine, Eucalyptus, Fig, Apple, Walnut, Cherry etc. This plant with Snake like appearance called Nagapushpa is commonly seen here.

  • But the most Amazing of all plants is the Bichubutti – Stinging nettle (Urtica). People, see this picture below and never forget this plant because if you touch it, it can cause Paresthesia- Prickling,burning, numbness on the skin. When we used to get breaks after walking long, people would sit wherever they found place. And when they sit without examining, many of my friend got a sting from a Bichhubutti that had grown around the rock they sat😅. Phir kya, aadhe ghante tak khujate raho!

The Roses of this region are particularly Large and bright!

To Nehru Kund:

Later that day, we went on a small walk to the Nehru Kund. On the way, there were these beautiful houses with Colorful gardens!

Nehru Kund is a natural spring of cold water located on the Manali- Rohtang Pass Highway. This is the area around which some parts of the film Krishh were shot.

In the serenity of the place, one can sit for hours enjoying the Flowing Beas! Photography enthusiasts will also enjoy clicking at this place especially during the Golden hour.

This was the highlight of my 1st day in Manali. It still feels like a Dream!

I hope you had a great time reading or atleast seeing the Photos! Stay tuned to go on our first Trek of the Trip in the next Blog!

If you haven’t read the previous blog, here you go:https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/22/reaching-manali/

Like, share and follow the blog of you enjoyed reading. Thank youu!😊

Reaching Manali_ E-01 Manali Memoir

On 22nd May, 2015, the Journey starts from Ahmedabad with an amazing bunch of people at Anala Outdoors. In this article I talk about the most memorable train ride to Pathankot, the fun and the challenging aspects of it, and then the entry to the Valley of the Gods that Manali is!
Ahmedabad to Pathankot:

I was going with my Friend, her Cousins and my Cousin and her Friends!
Apparently, I and my friend Kenny were the eldest ones in this group. So we were bombarded with a lot of Instructions and Responsibilities regarding safety of ourselves and our Luggage.
As we got to the platform at Ahmedabad Railway station, we met our Camp Leaders and other people on the Camp.
The train was scheduled around 11 am.
Very excited for the Fun waiting for us!
“Oh! It’s my First Trek! And now it Begins!!”
Despite all the excitement, Waving Bye to Parents is always Difficult. And suddenly, minutes before the Departure, you suddenly become aware that this is the first Long distance journey without Parents. “Will I be able to enjoy?”, “What if something gets lost?”, “Will I be able to mix with the group?” such thoughts start flooding the mind.
But that day, I was too excited to let any of these bother me. As we left the station, there was an Awkward Silence in the compartment. A few attempts at initiating a talk and soon we were laughing and mocking at each other’s Accent 😅!
At this I realize that it was the first time that I was traveling with my friend without it being a School Picnic. And as we were meeting people from different regions, their accents seemed Interesting.
Our Camp Leaders were so Chherful! In seconds, they made us forget our homes. First they came to check that everyone had comfortably gotten their seats. During that small interaction too, they pumped up everyone’s mood!

The whole Boggie was reserved for Participants from our Camp. So we could move around to other compartments. Introduction conversations began everywhere and it was all very Comforting!

It was around a 27 hrs Journey to Pathankot! And as most of the Path went through the Desert of Rajasthan, it was unbearably Hot! That must have been the day I purchased the Maximum number of Water Bottles!
Water seemed to be doing no effect on the thirst! In the initial hours, we had Cold Water, but soon that was over..

But what was making it bearable were the Games that we were Playing throughout!
We played all the usual “Train Games”, starting from Antakshari and Dumb Charades, to Playing Cards. A lot of Variety in that too. And then some even exhibit Magic with the cards!
In the afternoon, I went up and read my book (ofcourse a Sudha Murty book) for a while- journeys are incomplete without that😅!
Oh did I forget to mention about the fights for Window seats?! When Luscious green fields of Punjab are what you can see through the window, aren’t such fights bound to happen?!But,from fighting to sit first on the Window seat to fixing turns and then honestly giving the seat up once our turn was over- we Matured up! And even after all this our Kenny Madam chose the Foldable dining table as her Asana😂..On the way, came many interesting Stations! They were Interesting particularly for the Famous Food they served! Lipsmaking Rabri at Abu Road station is a Must have! Then comes Jodhpur and Bikaner and Bhatinda! How can you not get down, unnecessarily, at Bhatinda if you are a Jab We Met Fan?!😄 (even if it is 7 in the morning, you get down just for the sake of it and get back in a minute).
We reached Pathankot Cantt at around 3 o’ clock. It was the First Cantt I had seen and all the army trains loaded with Tanks on them- was amazing! The idea that this whole city consisted mostly of Armymen as its residents was amusing!
We slept at a hotel in Pathankot for the rest of the night. When we took a bath with the Cold water in the morning, it was like the Best Feeling Ever after that long, hot Journey!
But our camp leader laughed and said, “After this, you are gonna get even colder water and you would all be denying to bath with it😄!”

Pathankot to Manali:

The bus Journey from Pathankot to Manali was the most scenic!  As you come closer to the Mountains, the Beauty increases. Ofcourse we slept half the way. But for the part I was awake, the song Hum Jo Chalne Lage, Chalne Lage Hai ye raste- kept playing in my JabWeMetCrazyHead. The whirling roads running parallel to the Beas river leave you admiring the beauty of its Blue! View of the colorful hill Houses of Kullu made me want to get down and just sit and stare at that.
For better view of the Mountains, sit on the right side of the bus😉. Honestly, it does get a bit scary when you look down as the bus turns but that’s the Thrill!
We reached Manali and got down at a Dhaba on the mainroad. While we had our Breakfast-with-the-view-of-the-mountains there, our luggage was transferred to a smaller Tempo and taken to the camp. 

Across the road, into the Greens, is an Apple Orchard where we would be living for the next few days!! To reach there, you cross 2 wooden bridges over a stream gushing with full velocity and your Heart also tries to Pick up its velocity as you walk over it the First time! A few more steps on rocks and grass and you land Finally at the Campsite.More description of the Campsite and Orientation to Manali in the Next Blog!

I hope you enjoyed the Journey till here! There were many ‘Firsts’ in this one and that is why, it is special..If you haven’t read the blog about how I prepared for this trek, you can read it here:
https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2020/05/18/planning-for-manali-trek/

Thanks for Reading! See you in Manali in the Next Blog!

Planning for Manali Trek

Namaste!

5 years ago, around this time, I went for a Trek to Manali with Anala Outdoors. Those 10-12 days with my Friends and Cousins turned out to be the Most Fun, Memorable days of my Life! A lot of Good and a few Unfortunate events happend during that trip. But what all it Taught me will always be Cherished. Hence, I wanted to Document my experience in form of this Blog Series. I hope you will enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed Writing it😁!

So, let’s begin with Preparation for the Trek!

TYPES OF TREKS:

According to Facilities:

  • Camping Trekking: Organized and fully supported with Stay, guide, Cooks.
  • Guide and Porter trek: This includes expeditions like Everest where a Porter Carriers luggage for you.
  • Lodge Trek: Food and accommodation is provided.

According to Difficulty:

  • Easy Trek: Easy terrain, most treks in Maharashtra ( Sahyadri Range)
  • Moderate: Involve steeper terrains and need more stamina. Includes Hampta Pass, Bhrigu Lake etc. Himalayan treks
  • Difficult: Streep terrains with Challenging weather conditions. Like Everest Base camp.

According to Season:

  • Summer Trek: Har Ki Dhun, Kauri Pass etc.
  • Winter Trek: Kedarnath Trek, Chadar, Zanskar Trek, Chopta Chandrashila trek
  • Monsoon Trek: Valley Of Flowers, Markha Valley trek
  • Spring Trek: Dzongri La( Sikkim), Dodital trek.

Now a days, there are Yoga Treks, where people go for Spiritual and Physical Rejuvenation.

Around Manali itself, there are number of different treks one can opt for: Bhrigu Lake, Hampta Pass, Beas Kund, Chandratal Lake, Sar Pass, Pin Parvati, Chandrakhani and more.

Mine was supposed to be a Trek to Bhrigu Lake. But did I make it? Read the upcoming blogs to find out.

If you are Trekking with a Group/ Camping, they will give you a list of things you need to carry, but when it comes to buying accessories for Trekking, there is a lot of Confusion. If you go to a local shop, it is likely that the shopkeeper doesn’t even know that Capacity or Size of a bag can be described in Litres! This literally happened with me. A middle aged shopkeeper got annoyed at me when I asked if he has 40L or 60L Rucksack😅.. And here you wouldn’t even find a lot of Variety. While if you land up in stores like Decathalon, they will have so many options in one Product that it becomes difficult to choose which one is best suitable for you🤷‍♀️!In that case, I found that even small tips become so useful. So, what I have written here is what I was advised plus what I learned from my experience.

1: Trekking Bags/ Rucksacks

Honestly, if you are a going on a Trek with a group, as I did,- where they arrange for your Stay etc.- you will not need to carry all your luggage a lot. Such groups usually have arrangements of Vehicles that will carry your Big Bags. In that case a rucksack becomes really unnecessary.

But if you intend to go on solo, tougher treks in the future, then a Rucksack is not a bad investment. Good quality rucksacks are designed in a way that they Distribute the weight of your luggage evenly and properly over your Back, Hips and Legs and not just Shoulders, making it a lot more comfortable that a normal bag.

Some also have a net that allows for Air to reach your Back. Some come with Rod in centre that also aids in Weight Distribution. You can go as Advanced as you want.. but keep following points in mind:

  • Choose materials that are tough but Lightweight.
  • Wider Shoulder straps and Hip Belts are better for support.
  • Straps should be Padded and Adjustable.
  • Height of Rucksack should be in accordance with your Height/ torso Length.

2: Trekking Shoes:

Investing in proper shoes is Very Important.

  • You would be walking on Rocks and uneven surfaces. There is a huge chance you could twist or injure your Ankle and get a Sprain. To prevent this, wear shoes that provide good Ankle Support.
  • Check the Size. While it should provide enough room to be able to Wiggle the Toes, it should hold your Heels in Place. Floating Heels are main cause of Blisters.
  • Try them with Socks and Insoles and proper Lacing technique before buying.
  • You might step into some puddles or get in snow. If water enters your shoes, it makes feet uncomfortable and cause Blisters and Odour. To avoid that buy shoes that are Water Resistant. Don’t get Water Proof – they won’t let your feet breathe or let Perspiration out.
  • Definitely wear them around for a while before you wear them on the Trek. You don’t want a Shoebite.
  • To prevent Shoe Bite, apply Petroleum Jelly (Vaseline) before you wear your socks and shoes.

On such camps, you would Not need Professional Mountaineering Shoes. These have an extra insulating layer to protect from the snow and are tough and durable but also quite expensive.

3: Sleeping Bag:

Sleeping Bags come in a lot of Shapes and Insulations. Mummy shaped Sleeping bags are Warmer. Rectangular one are wider and provide a room for tossing around. 3 season sleeping bags, rated -10° to 0° Celcius are commonly used. Also, Light and Compact ones are better.

3: Sunglasses:

Sunlight on Mountains is harsh and has more UV rays. So having proper eyewear is important. Do not go for fancy reflectors which have only Aesthetic value. Polycarbonate Lenses are best suitable for mounting treks. Polarized lens will cut off Glare and intensity of Light entering your eyes.

4: Sunscreen:

If you do not want a Sunburn, APPLYING AND REAPPLYING of Sunscreen with SPF 50 (atleast) is recommended.

5: Clothes:

It is best to Layer Clothes. Carry light weight, preferably Cotton clothes, with Full Sleeves, that you can layer. You can add Woolens and Jackets on them. Getting a Waterproof Jacket would be nice because then you won’t have to carry a separate Raincoat (and it does rain there frequently).

6: Water Bottle:

You have to carry that bottle the whole day while you walk. When one takes a Steel Bottle, the Bottle itself is quite heavy plus you have to carry it even after it is empty. Instead if you have a Foldable Water pouch, it is Light, you can Clip it to your Bag, no need to Hold and after its empty, you can just fold it.

Drinking water from Steel Bottles is lot more healthy, and you should do that in your normal life,but it can get inconvenient on a trek.

Tip about Drinking Water:

In the Mountains, in such camps, the water you drink is coming directly from the Glaciers. While its rich in Minerals (and is Heavenly 😇), it can be too Cold. It can damage your Throat and your might catch a cold. You don’t want that on this Fun Trek. So gargle the water in mouth for few minutes till it comes to body temperature and then Gulp it down.

Miscellaneous Things:

  • Take Woolen Headcap, Handgloves, Pair of Slippers, Torch and essential Toiletries.
  • Quick Dry Towels come very Useful as every morning, you don’t get enough time to dry them. But its completely Optional.
  • Consult your Physician before leaving. Take medicines prescribed by them, motion sickness meds and Sprays for Sprain etc.
  • Inhaling Camphor will be useful if you feel difficulty breathing at High Altitude.
  • Don’t forget to Carry your Novels, Diary and Pen!😅

PHYSICAL FITNESS:

The Fitter you are, more likely you are to Enjoy the Trek completely. It’s not advisable to be like Naina from YJHD ki kal raat ko Packing ki aur aaj Trek pe Chale gaye! (She could be Fit even in her normal life, but people like me and you, my dear friend, need some Physical Training before we get into so much Walking that too on rough terrain).

  • Aerobic Fitness: To cope with less Oxygen density at Higher Altitude, we should train our Cardiovascular system by Aerobic exercises like Cardio, Jogging or Running. It will build your Stamina.
  • Strength and Endurance training: We need to strengthen our Shoulders, Back, Legs to walk on Steep Slopes with Heavy Bags. To begin with, you can do Squats, Lunges.
  • Stretching your Quadriceps, Hamstrings, Hip Flexors and Lower Back muscles regularly, relaxes your Tissues, reducing strain on your Back. Gaining Flexibility will prevent Injuries. (Stretch even at end of actual hike each day.

Mental Preparation:

I will be talking about this throughout the Series, but one Important thing ( for first timers) is that You will have to Walk a lot. But it’s all gonna be Worth it. You Can Do It. Oh yes, you would Probably not be allowed to take your Phone, so stay prepared for that!😂

I hope the World normalizes soon and then my tips come useful to you!

Are you ready to come with me on this Virtual Trip to Manali?! Stay tuned for the Upcoming Blogs!

Till then, if you wish to read my Other Travel Blog on Leh Ladakh, you can read it on the Link below:

https://diniwriteup.home.blog/2019/09/18/wanna-get-lehd/

Like and Share the Blog of you like and comment below your thoughts about this one! Thank youu!😊