Meghalaya: The home of clouds-for endless delights
We were excited and nervous about Ri Kynjai: the resort where we were booked for the next many days. (a) We didn’t know anyone who had been to this resort or even the state of Meghalaya! (barring one colleague who absolutely loved Meghalaya) (b) Were very nervous about the service and expectations at the resort if the online reviews were anything to go by. On the other hand we were very excited and looking forward to being far away from the city chaos, in mysterious Meghalaya which is also known as Scotland of India – in the lap of cool climes.
Ri Kynjai, the resort which was to be our home away from home, was delightful! Serenity by the Lake - ‘idyllic’. Once we were shown into our cottage we were left alone to enjoy our haven! Ensconced in the beautiful large cottage, sitting out in the spacious balcony overlooking the lake Umiam (also known as Bara Paani) – watching clouds gather, I wished for rains. As if on cue a light rainfall seeped through gently from the clouds at first, soon the sky darkened, and serious unabashed rains took over the evening. We were happy to be bound indoors, enjoying the glorious new experience- the feeling is indescribable –almost spiritual – a peace, calm and stillness had taken over.
BY nightfall we stepped out for dinner to a rain drenched earth. Windows rolled down, moon light in the sky, the air cold, crisp and refreshing! With anticipation we headed towards Centre Point Cloud 9 (central market area of Shillong)
To our delight the 60year old maverick musician Lou Majaw (who is to Meghalaya what Madonna is to America) was in the house and that evening cannot ever be wiped out of our memories. What energy! Not for nothing is Shillong known as the rock capital of the country. Many International and homegrown bands perform here and we now understand why : )
Over the next many days we experienced delightful places. Lady Hydari Park was pretty, Ward Lake was blooming with vivacious colorful flowers, we even spent some time sitting on the well manicured gardens and sipping coffee. Joyous! Cannot remember the last time I must have sat in a park like this in Mumbai- hang on do we even have such parks in Mumbai?!:)
The Elephant Falls were touted as one of ‘the sights’ in Meghalaya! We reached there to realize they were small trickles flowing through ridges, but marketed well by Meghalay- after all tourism makes the world go round! We folks living a tired life in the urban jungles are never mindful or ever appreciative of our natural surroundings. Its people living away from the humdrum of city life who take delight even in the smallest waterfalls ( this was’nt like an ‘o-my god-sight’) they have amidst themselves – but it is most definitely was a tourist spot! Small streams accumulate at the pinnacle of the hill and come trickling down the terrain to rebound again, only to cover a short distance and once again leap into a daunting gorge. It is a natural pandemonium that one witnesses – and the joyous part for me was the surrounding basin sheltered by the sky like green vegetation providing a perfect backdrop to this enchanting picnic spot.
One of the other disappointing views which was touted hugely by the locals was at Lire Kor – a beautiful winding long drive to reach the highest point of Shillong. One gets practically the whole view of Shillong city from here. It was a dump a far as I was concerned. Filled with tourists, buses, cabs etc- if you are looking for serene alone time then please stop short of this touted view. Because the view from many parts of this drive- affords one the whole of Shillong city- panoramic, pretty, nestled in the mountains-minus the crowds.
Shillong the city was a slight surprise by day time. A hill town, with narrow winding roads meeting big city with its buses, choked traffic and teeming office goers. We were delightfully surprised to realize it is a big centre for education (boasts of IIT & IIM) –but the traffic jams are so so so not pleasant! There is no way of avoiding the jams as there is just one road to cut thru to go in and out of the city.
Evenings would see us soaking in the golden sky from our perched balcony above the Umiam lake - bird calls resounded in the natural amphitheatre while butterflies fluttered here and there. We’d be transported to Alice in wonder land; completely lost in our own world once again.
One post is simply not enough to speak on Meghalaya- so the next one coming up soon I promise.
Posted by Mee at 04:02