Near Fagu Valley : Shimla
Off-course I want to confess this…that I have never loved…anybody…anything…so deeply…and admiringly… as I love Shimla! Yes I do!
As far as I could remember it was a love at first sight. It was 2002, when a college trip allowed me to visit you. I remember there was a girl in our trip and we were kind of getting comfortable with each other, till I started developing a feeling for you. Rest is a story…that girl was not able to understand that how can a guy love to watch hills more than curves? But it was actually a choice. A preference of life long commitment over teenage infatuation…and I made my choice.
Shimla in 2002
Since then it was never ending desire to visit you again and again. Sometimes in a group sometimes alone, but still… I didn’t have enough of you.
I love you for hundred thousand reasons but most of all I love you ’cause you are you!
Shimla… I love you for your narrow alleys…winding roads…victorian architectures and mesmerizing environment…
I am in love with your innocence, your fragrance and the beauty that bestowed around you
I love the lone walk…a joy…and also a kind of luxury…which I miss the most when I am away…
I love the freedom in the air…that liberates everything…
You might have too many admirers but I am the one who truly cares for you… who feels your pain while seeing you turning into a man’s zoo. I saw you adapting and accommodating…so many of your visitors…with the same love and affection…this sometimes makes me miserable as I am still nostalgic about those days when there were few takers of your charm.
You saw the empires bending knees to your beauty. Then you witnessed the struggle to drive your occupants away, for a greater cause. You were the center of many high profile activities and visits. The site of viceroy lodge up on the observatory hills are refreshingly pleasant. It was designed and built by the PWD (Public Works Department) department, which are otherwise synonymous to the ugliness to its structures. In the late 1800, this was the only building with electricity and central heating system. This is the place where the decision was made to partition India. You saw the pain but then rejoiced with the site of freedom.
Coming back to present…the path that leads to you are extraordinary, and my favorite too…
First time when I was visiting you with my friends this piece of wonder used to be so isolated that we occupied a whole cabin for ourselves…and made it our little kingdom…where we sang, ate and had lot of unforgettable moments.
I still remember we used to visited a nearby charm called ”Kufri” that was so peaceful with spectacular view of high hills in the midst of pine trees. Ponies were there even then but it was a mere facility and not a completion.
This time I was so sad seeing this little paradise turning into a commercial nightmare. There was a fun world…which actually snatched all the fun and the pristine nature of this place.
The trees otherwise laden with mist are now used to hang bottles so that one can take the aim to conquer the peace of the surroundings. Everything was at stake…off-course for a price…something which is payable…and few things which can’t be recover now.
For someone it is more developed…with better facilities…eating joints…shopping venues…but for me something is missing. I tried to find those missing chords this time which compel me to visit you again and again. And I find few…
So, here I am feeling as fresh as dew. I can’t find you always like I want to…and also my pain is less than yours. I am also a part of this fight…fight between conservation and development…fight between growing expectations and nostalgic movements. Nothing can change my love to you. And I thank god for giving me Shimla.