Saturday, November 8, 2008

Chilling out at tilari (Sachin we missed you and you missed this one!)

In the darkness of the evening of 25th Oct, Raju, Donald (Don) and I pitched the tent near the edge of a cliff in Tilari ghat. The memories of two years ago came flooding, Sachin had come down from US of A then, and the same trio along with Sachin had spent the night with Dhangars at the very same spot. The dinner that night was dal prepared in goats milk, chicken curry, fried chicken and rice all in dhangar style. We slept in their tent and it had rained heavy later that night.

This time the trip was a special one for us; we had driven 100Kms from Ponda (Goa) to put to test the tent that we had designed and Raju had built. It took us 45 minutes to erect the tent in heavy cold wind that blew across the plateau. The tent was yet another example of Raju’s excellent craftsmanship, 8 pieces of 2 inch PVC pipes with elbow joints forms the skeletal structure of the tent. The tent body is made from thin and tough plastic sheet (the type used to cover truck cargo).

As we stood there in the dark of the night admiring and scrutinizing the structure, we realized how cold and heavy the wind was. The tent looked robust enough to withstand the wind but we were ill prepared for the cold.

The vast open space around and crystal clear starry night transformed the mundane into special, For, Raju’s Kaju (Feni) tasted like premium malt whisky and Don’s beer like Champagne. Even the dinner of Bhaji and bread (Courtesy Don) was like a feast.

By now the chill had penetrated to our bones, after cleaning up and scanning the surrounding grass land with the LED torch (yet another of Raju’s avishkar) we hit the tent floor and called it a Good night.

The wind brought the tent to life, the plastic sheet made funny rustling sounds through out the night, a slightest of our movements added to the fluttering sounds and the whole tent seemed like a live creature that had engulfed us. We slept lightly, only entering deep sleep very early in the morning.

Don was first to wake up followed by Raju and then me, plastic bottle filled with water we went in search of a hide out to answer nature’s call. Freshened up we managed to dismantle the tent in flat 15 minutes. Our mission was a success!

Loading our belongings into the car we headed for Tilari-nagar village. The whole of village life seems to be concentrated at a junction on Tilari - Belgaum highway. The junction comes to life every time a bus or a truck takes a halt and driver and passengers rushing for quick bite at one of the two hotels. We broke our fast savoring the hot and spicy Usal pav, Upit and Sheera.

The rest of the day we spent walking around on the plateau. We had a mid day bath in cold and clear running water at the top of the water fall.

For lunch we were back at the junction, with full stomachs we headed for the dam where we had a power nap that energized us for our return drive.


junktunes said...

awesome camping it must have been..!

Anonymous said...

Hey Ajay, Your post reminded me of our last trip to Tilari. I will never forget the Dhangar Dinner. The next time I am down there we will have to go camping. Duh!!!!! what am I saying ..... of course we go camping every time I come over there. Cheers and keep camping.


Myndscape said...

Hey Sachin, waiting for you to come down!!!!!!!!

साईश वि. सीनाय खांडेपारकर said...

thanxx for rock-lyrics commentss sir..!
I'll try my hardest to improvise my work..

Kaustubh said...

Mind-blowing! When are we getting the entry in the tent???

Myndscape said...

Hey Kaustubh, you are welcome anytime. The tent can hold only 4 though!!!!