A trip to remember
Khuub Jamega Rang, Jab milenge teen yaar... (There is no Bagpiper involved here). There are times when you just plan and plan and plan. Very few of them get executed. About 4-5 days ago, I called Anup A.k.a Ak, from Mumbai asking him to come to Pune so that we could roam around Pune. I was off to Pune for a change after my CMA final exams. Another friend of us Pankaj aka Pk (no resemblance with the movie Pk) was already out there for his studies.
Meeting your friends in a new city is always fun. And in our case, it was me who knew nothing about Pune; Pankaj who was there for his studies but was equally new to Pune and Anup from Mumbai who always shook his head saying, “I don’t understand a dam thing about Pune”.
Even after all of this, we decided to go to Sinhagad. We decided to meet at Swargate, a place from where we could board the bus to Sinhagad. Anup had to take a bus from Mumbai at 6 AM. I messaged him, ‘Are you sure you are going to wake up so early?’
To this he directly sent a screenshot of his alarm set at 5 AM. I was still not sure whether he will make it or not. The chilling winter was one reason and second but obvious his laziness.
On the day, I woke up just to check whether he had boarded the bus or not. To my surprise he was on his way on time. It was going to be a three hour journey for him. The temperature in Pune had dropped well below 9°celcius. Swargate was more than an hour journey by bus for me and for Pankaj it was a half hour distance. Accordingly I left. Being from a city (Aurangabad) which has nothing called public transport, a city like Pune tests your patience while you wait for a bus. After a long wait I boarded the bus. Meanwhile Anup had already reached. Soon I reached the decided place. Meeting a friend after a long time from another city in some another city gave us a feel from the movie ‘Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara’. And why not, all of us were strangers to this place and arrived at the meeting point from our respective places. Soon Pankaj also arrived.
We headed to the bus stop from where we could get a bus to Sinhagad. We were already late and after enquiring, we came to know that was bus will take more time to arrive. Then we decided to go by a six-seater or Tumtum or Dugdugi as it is popularly called. Anup’s head kept hitting the roof of the vehicle and I made fun of it throughout our journey. On the way, we saw the Khadakwasla Dam. And then we headed to our destination, Sinhagad.
As we reached there, we were hungry. While looking for where to have our lunch, a board caught our attention. The name was, ‘Aaplya Balucha Dhaba’. We decided to have lunch there. The view from there was awesome.
Well I am not endorsing the dhaba, but I really liked the way they interacted with us. It was a practical example of how customer relationships should be managed. We ordered Dahi(curd which comes in a pot) and Pithla Bhakri which is very popular out there.
After the delicious lunch, we headed to the fort.
While on any fort, one is always surprised that how such a huge fort must have been constructed hundreds of years ago. Same was the point of our discussion.
The respect towards Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and his empire gets doubled as one discusses the various events from the life of Shivaji Maharaj. Especially in Maharashtra, Sinhagad has a special place in history because of the sacrifice made by Tanaji Malusare. We were awestruck when we saw the cliff from where he climbed up the fort.
There is also a house of Lokmany Tilak who resided there. Mahatma Gandhi and Lokmany Tilak met there once during the independence struggle.
Even though it was 3 PM, there was considerable amount of fog because of which we were unable to see Rajgad, Torna and Purandar forts which are visible from there.
On our return journey, we decided to go down by a vehicle as we were in a hurry. The jeep service drops the passengers. There was a group of college girls in the jeep. Me and Anup sat beside the driver. Pankaj, fortunately or unfortunately had to sit in the last row with the girls. (I think no more explanation is need why I used ‘fortunately or unfortunately’).
Later we again took a Tumtum(Dugdugi) to Swargate. On our way, our tumtum’s engine stopped. The reasons not know to the driver either. We literally pushed it away from the road to clear the traffic behind us. After endless efforts it started. And this way we completed our one day trip to Sinhagad.
To all my friends reading this, we missed you all the whole day. Hope someday we arrange something similar to a new place.