Archive for the ‘Exploring India’ Category

Beautiful view in the morning, never realized sky is so blue. I was happy too, finally I could poop, it was so relaxing I never felt I could feel that way. Some of them still couldnt poop “Still no luck, I am worried now. I eat so much wonder where it is piled up”. 🙂 I didnt dare to laugh. Meanwhile no one cared about the night fart sound. I giggled whenever I heard them but never dared to fart in public. 

Our darling kitchen boy. Water was icy cold wondered how he manged to wash all those vessels.

Fresh and energetic, yep that’s how we looked at the beginning of the day.

MouLee’s oxygen was very low and he was shivering mildly. Previous evening when Pawanji check his oxygen level after the soup, it was below 70. 

“Do you want to continue or go back?”

Moulee just looked, he didnt answer. He didnt had the proper trekking gear, no stamina and no previous trekking experience not sure why he opted the trekking in first place. He looked very much unprepared but group always encouraged him, motivated him.  “He can make it:,”No he should go back”, everyone had their own opinion, MouLee had to decide because it was his call.

Most of the time due to drop in Oxygen level , trek guide send the trekker back and its painful site to watch . They would have dreamt  the summit, would have exercised and spent a lot of money to be there. 

When Pawanji checked Mou Lee’s oxygen level after the breakfast, that day it was very low, so to avoid the future complications Pawanji decided to send him back. “Take this bar, take care of yourself ” I said my good bye so did everyone in their own different ways. As he was occupied he couldn’t join us for the group pic one last time. We started our trek without saying formal bye to him, Rigzen was leading and Pawanji stayed back to look after the arrangement to send MouLee back

It was almost 11 when we could see Pawanji catching up with us “I sent him, my god, his oxygen level was very low, had to give him emergency oxygen. Hopefully he will reach back safely ” He explained us everything in one breath. 

Mountains, mountains and more mountains.

You can find all sorts of colors, pink, purple, white, yellow, blue…

DO EPIC SHIT, stranger from the trail.

Sri never sat he always leaned to one or other thing with his monster bag. As Stupa is holy he was requested to move from there, Sri apologized and found another place to lean on. When you are visitor be like and visitor and respect the culture, peoples sentiments.

Ever cool Chandhar sir.

Kitchen staff and mules always started after us and reached before us 🙂

Ever energetic kitchen staff.

We were told we have cross couple of streams in upcoming days and have to keep slippers handy, when we saw the stream we were like “wow”

When mules go wild in wild.

Eating Musk melon on the trail, it was totally a different feeling. Thanks to Rigzen and the kitchen staff.

The cute little munchkins from the mountains. 

“Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.” Math 6:29

One of my favorite my-click.

Once left

Once right

And then Straight up.

There was a old school adjacent to our camp side in Markha. When we reached the camp side, all curious kids came to see us and Rigzen chased them around. 

I asked his name and he said something which I couldnt get it so to keep it short and sweet I started calling him “Chingu”.

Renu had got some nice, yummy bar chocolates which were not very sweet, Chingu picked one, took a bite, made a weird face and throw it to the ground and jumped on it while Renu watched with horror. She had taken lot of pain to carry those chocolates, in no time Chingu just kicked the chocolates butt showing its no big deal.

Markha School

You are always “WELL COME”

Dining tent. There is one craziest chair, no matter whoever sits on it they topple and we laugh our lungs out.

Its acclimatization time.

Markha Village view from the top.

Shomonata Monastery

Pawanji posing with his friends.

The curious mules

“Look, the mountain goats” Pawanji shouted, all could see them bearing the same color that of mountain except for me. I have to put finger inside my eyes rub and ask “Where?I cant see them”.

Killing mountain goats is prohibited, government have installed cameras and if any body gets caught are prosecuted as per Leh’s law .

Most of them could spot right away,  “Where?” I was still searching “There, see, right front of you”. When I almost gave up I spotted them, happy ending for my 4 eyes.

Our kitchen tent, the food was always delicious and yum, we could serve n number of times only on one precondition “no wasting”.

Some mule riding in the evening.

As soon as we were back from acclimatization all started playing cricket which ended with Tiffin’s “Bumro Bumro with heavy steps. I never felt I am away from home even for single second.

Soup, oxygen level check, dinner, camp fire and then bed, it was a long day

To Be Continued


A crazy mule was crying whole night like it has possessed with some mountain daemon, keeping us awake most of the night. It was almost dawn when the tired mule shut its mouth and let our eyelids close for a brisk hour or so. Otherwise it was like paradise, quiet and beautiful most of all peaceful in midst of nowhere surrounded by mountains ,streams and humble people.

As our ritual, we clicked group pick before starting our trek to Sara, after having ravishing breakfast with multiple serves. Kitchen stuff was so good and humble, they were always looking after us.

We kick started our trek, Sara called me aside and said “lets pray”. So it begun, Sara’s and mine ritual, Sara would say few things about how the trek has been so far  followed by watch over us, protect us, our father and three Hail Mary’s. I was glad I had someone with whom I could pray. Yes, we continued this till the last day without fail.

Ladaki women are so pretty and down to earth.

Pawan said she isnt keeping well so she had to cut down her trek, we didnt ask her, its painful when you have drop the trail ahead of you and come back.

Looks like they are already bored of us.

Pawan have completed Stok Kangri so many times, still he leads trek groups on regular basis. One of the best TTH, trek leader. On other hand Rigzen is mountain man, fearless, strong.  He have climbed almost all near by mountains Kang Yatse, Stok Kangri and many more. He organized Chadar trek as well in winter. He is your man if you are looking for a fun loving mountain man in Leh.

While Rigzen was leading the group Pawan always followed us at the end, making sure all are doing ok.

Bunch of old but crazy folks. It was one heck of a trek with them. If not for them it wouldn’t have been the same.

Alibaba and 40 chor is all I could think about it.

The Shaggy dog followed us and was very happy to see us.

If you want to destroy the evil you need to fight and defeat it.

Then pray for more power to almighty so that you can be a superhero.

Sri was total fun, I found a great millennial friend who is learning machine language in his free time.

Mou Lee followed us with his own speed, Pawan was always with them making sure he is doing ok.

Apparently this place is cafe run by women only, it wasnt open for the season yet.

The four best friends for life. They all had a different but unique bond. We couldnt believe Raju was leading with Subhash, looked like he was back in his form. When Tiffin and Kishore lagged behind Subhash stayed back and encouraged them. I loved his jokes and laughed like crazy all the time.

Our boiled-potato break spot. 

Mules carrying kitchen items and our bags. They always started after us and reached before us

No it doesnt look like the mountains is farting the white gas,rather it looked like mountains were smoking Maui-wowie early in the morning.

The crazy lad wanted do push-ups on the rock,nonetheless  we captured the epic moment while his dad just watched, how cool is that.

Sara smilingly said “Sara welcomes you all to Sara “


Camp site

After having hot lunch, bless the kitchen staff, we were sun-bathing with Fench Babe as Sri called himself at the moment.

Acclimatization was always fun.

Pic talks itself, PC: RS

Toilet tents few feet away from out tents. I used the open nature to wee whenever I could, hiding behind the bushes and disappearing behind the trees. It was my second day without pooping, I was restless like many others. After having the dinner when I walked towards the toilet, so one was singing so I called out. Sri was in may be constipated like me.

“Hey Sri, you gonna take long time”.


“May be I will wait here “


“We had such a lovely day today “

“hmmm”. it  sounded like he was in pain

“Hey Sri, you ok .”

“Dude, let me concentrate and finish my business”.

“My bad Sri, see you later”

It was cold that night but peaceful so could catch up my beauty sleep right away.


To Be Continued 



Markha valley trek day 1 kick started with light gyan and the group pic. Couple of hours drive from Leh and then couple of hours walk to Skiu, which was our final destination for the day

Photography is prohibited 🙂 yes, I am that annoying Indian tourist who once in a blue moon break the rules.

That is Indus flowing as lazy as possible.

The best bees. Luckily Raju recovered and was able to make it, in fact we was leading the trek with his friends cracking jokes and laughing all the time.

Mogli as Sara used to call him.

Our super fit trek leader Pawan

Sexy and sleek. All you have to do is be there and roads lead you wherever you want

Magnetic Hills.

Sangam where Indus, pretty, quietly glowing with green meets vigorously flowing dirty Zanskar. In winter Zanskar will be frozen and people trek on the frozen surface famously known as Chadar trek.

“BRO At Your Service”. When we read this we felt Leh is so cool. Cool people have so cool encouraging statements. “Its like Indus joins Zanskar and they flow together to Pakistan , Indian saying coolly  “bro” at your service”(some Sri logic) this is what Sri had to say after reading this for 5 times. With their mind blowing road signs I felt Leh is super cool and totally YO. It was later, when I was my extended trip I realized BRO stands for:Border Road Organization. When I messaged and told Sri about his incorrect cooked up story he laughed. Some stupid logic for stupid people which makes that stupid moment epic.

Pawan is hard core trekker, mountaineer with our gorgeous ladies.

River rafting in Zanskar. I soo wanted to try.

Starting point of river rafting

Many more to go. Coolest road sign you can find are all in Leh

Leh’s Super Man. I think nothing can stop Regzen. Born in Skiu, I havent seen anyone who can carry so many bags and walk. Down to earth, he is very smart and judging the trekkers. Very humble and helpful. If he is your trek guide, man your trek going to be LEGENDARY!

Our first stop for the day. Museum where craftsman still use old traditional ways

Sri had complained that he is running short of good profile pictures and I solved his problem in no time.

Mountain goat horns

And the skilled craftsman

Its toilet:). They dug a deep pit with a hole, over which you have squat and aim it making sure whatever business you do it goes down through the hole and then dump little mud on it like cats.

Our packed lunch for the day.

Yummy yummy lunch and tummy full.

And it begins

First break of many  🙂

With his crazy-monster bag Sri was always lying down type wherever we stopped for break

The colors will lift your spirit in no time.

That’s tiffin aka fart king. One of the coolest person I ever met. He got famous nick name “tiffin” becasue no matter where we was he always carried his tiffin box(lunch box) filled with rice, sambar, curds and veggies and spread it over a plate without caring anyone.

Our trek leader and trek guide. They are smart and always observant. Rigzen picked up the plastic bottles he found on the way.

And finally we met the trekker who enrolled at the last minute. We used to call her army girl as her dad is serving Indian army. She have completed mountaineering course couple of years back. She is very passionate, strong trekker who was always second in line.


More stupa’s

They say whoever comes to Leh becomes a professional photographer and is so true.

Shaggy Dog

Some catching up with school teachers

And then some catching up with the three pupils:)

Pretty Dolma

Like her dad Dolma started walking and never stopped but she was observant. She always maintained the pace

The shaggy dog followed the guy in yellow.  He was always in the lead. Whenever his friends were tired he stopped with them and encouraged them. He is the glue which held all four them them very tightly. I laughed my lungs out listening to his jokes while others just smiled.

Our camp site.

Against everyone’s warning “You will wet your shoes, break few bones, its just first day of the trek” zup  Sri leaped crossed the stream. “So how you gonna come back now?” his dad was asking him in all his mighty coolness while I was imagining if my dad was in his place by now he would have whacked and I would be busy wailing from top of my voice.

No Sri didnt lose his calm. He listened to his dads instruction while we all waited to see whether he will wet his shoes or not.

no he didnt

Meanwhile tiffin started building a bridge saying “I will build and show, this stream is nothing”. No he didnt finish it.:) 

And then acclimatization.

Our DSLR guy who captured one of the best portraits.

Rigzen took us all to his home and we went all so crazy seeing it. It is one of the coziest place you can find in the Leh.

We met his pretty mom and we knew then from whom he gets his looks.

Dolma was busy with her video game.

What I liked the most is the view from the window

Our pooping tent. No we didnt the latch. One had to sing or be attentive and scream when heard the footsteps.I did that twice. More than that pooping in the adjacent tent was stressful.

After having our soup Pawan checked our oxygen level. As many of them had taken Diamox(I didnt) oxygen level was well maintained. Except Mogli’s, which was at the border, plus his walking phase was very slow. He was hopeful so as we. After having our delicious dinner we went to bed. Some could sleep peacefully while some couldnt. It was drizzling , bit chilly except for that crazy mule who cried every single minute it was perfect night

To be Continued…


Some catching up in the morning

We had hired a taxi for the day or plan was to cover as many monasteries as possible. With our ass up by 8 and lots of talking, giggling over stupid jokes it was almost 11 when we, 6 of us squeezed into Tani’s Omni. As one of the guy in the gang 4 chaddi-buddies wasnt keeping well, best-bees decided to stay back and take care of their unwell friend. I was pretty surprised by their close bonding.

First one was Hemis Monastery

It’s just mind blowing

Dont fall for the look we were just fooling around. Best part was even though we were of different age group when it came to having fun and living in the moment we were all 9 years old.One behind the camera, one yelling change the pose and rest posing, smiling and making sure they look pretty in the picture.

There is so much to talk about Sri and his intelligent IIT dad. It was a dream a meet a IIT guy because I always wondered what their look like. Chandhar sir proved me wrong, first of all he was way too much normal than us plus his coolness was un-measurable. The things the duo discussed started from badminton auction, next trek, learning machine language, sending Head mistress of their house to the trek with their work-out freak other brainy who at the age of 17 have ripped up body. They never stopped they went on talking and whenever I could I eavesdropped not because I was interested in their conversation but because I was taken aback seeing the closeness, there werent any barriers .When Sri told me that his dad have completed his Ph.D my eyes were almost popped out of my socket. So down to earth, caring father and most of all a great human being.

The ladies need no introduction, chilled out , humble, go-getters I met. They were the energy booster to the whole farting(stories for later) group

She is a awesome photographer!. I had reached Leh a day earlier. What she did was gave me a call(which I missed) and then dropped me a message asking if I need anything. Dumbstruck, yes I was and was touched deeply.

After spending couple of hours in Hemis monastery we had our lunch on the way to Thiksey monastery

Thiksey monastery

I found a small little tigress posing

If I am around you can bag some cool pics for your Insta about which you can brag from morning till evening  except the photographer (that’s me 😦 ) .

I found Sri to super cool like his dad. He was the only one I believe who used to laugh at my stupid jokes as he says. He was little evil(little brat) as I used to say but I found a great friend in him. He was a great listener like me may be that’s why we just hit it off. He is really smart because he picked same kinda earring to his mom and girl friend, not giving any of them option to choose.

Then I found a little Bunny Rabbit with his parents trying to please them, posing as they instructed him

You need lot of time to take in all of the surrounding especially the gigantic beautiful Buddha statue. The annoying Indian tourist will be in queue to click ‘n’ number of pics (like us) and other tourist who will be busy admiring the art, smiling and clicking random pictures.

Thats Moulee. He is a sweet guy who can get lost without your supervision. No he didnt utter a word when I gave him a gyan on being punctual and being attentive. He simply smiled and said “ok”. Sadly second day of the trek his oxygen level went pretty down and he was instructed to go back. His was having his breakfast on the third day while his hands shivered. All I was manage to tell was “Take care Moulee”.

Later we got to know from Pawan that his oxygen level dropped very low and he was given oxygen. Somehow he was able to reach back Leh. This focuses around one more important thing, treks cant be planned at the last minute like how he did, without prior preparation and trekking gear.

More pictures and more poses.

One more thing which I liked about our group was even though we spent lot of time clicking pictures, no one utter a word. If they were bored they just sat and waited without complaining!

And finally when were done clicking our crazy picture we were on our way to Shey Palace

I was able to capture them from top of the Palace and I am sure they were deep down in some intellectual conversation .

I told the shy couple to sit and pose. I helped them to capture a memory and I made them a sweet orange-full memory.

That’s us, crazy us.

And then checking like 9 years old

So true

When we reached back we were tired. Leh was almost getting ready for bed. Sun seemed careless about his bedtime even though it was 7 in the evening

Ladakhi’s are hard workers, they dont even care the time. Its was 7:30PM and I found this couple working side by side without fighting 🙂

More to Go…

Hit The Road

Posted: August 20, 2019 in I Got Leh'd, Motion Picture
Tags: ,


Posted: August 18, 2019 in I Got Leh'd

I was up quite early the next day, thanks to my current job, I am a fucking rooster no matter where I go. Night wasn’t that bad and luckily I didn’t have the agonizing headache. Dhruvin was up already and packing, he was going sightseeing in a shared taxi. After freshening up and not to forget after pooping(it’s a biggest achievement if you are able to poop in a brand new surrounding) I was getting ready, I had to check out from the hostel and meet up with my trek group, at a homestay round the corner. On my way out I happen to see Kelvin rushing to the washroom in nothing but his black underwear. I know it’s no big deal, at least not for foreigners but for most of us Indians hmmm… “Good Morning”, I gave him a broad smile, you see it was a beautiful, scratch that, it was a heavenly day. “Good Morning “, he said giving his morning lazy smile. Darn I love hostels.

Having breakfast with Ladina made me realize she is an encyclopedia, she had so much to share and I there was so much I wanted to listen to, nothing she said seemed dull or boring, everything was just fascinating, a riveting account of her life. Through our conversations she implied she wasn’t the same with everyone, meaning I was among the chosen few and I couldn’t be happier. After bidding farewell to Ladina and Gharghi, the one who assured me a woman can travel solo in Leh, I was on my way to the homestay where my other trek members were waiting. I got a ride from a guy who had studied in Bangalore. He explained to me the good work he is doing for Ladhki’s, like counselling and stuff. He wasn’t ready to take money and but I wasn’t in for a free ride either.

Meeting Renu and Sarah, our gorgeous ladies from the trekking group changed my perspective towards life. This was my first time meeting them but thanks to the WhatsApp group, all 9 of us felt like we had known each other for ages, specially the gorgeous ladies. With their incredible wit and wisdom, they kept the group alive. Renu’s audio message on what to pack and her comprehensive view on just about anything trek related was so impressive, it simply blew my mind.

When I saw Renu and Sarah I was dumbstruck. They were so graceful, vivacious and just easy to be around with. Their down to earth attitude caught my heart and in absolutely no time we hit it off.

Just a while later we went on a brisk walk, on the way posing of pictures, click some, talking about this and that, turning the prayer wheel and swallowing lot of dust, just creating memories. When the sun started to burn our skin we decide to walk back, just then a white SUV stopped by, windows rolled down in style and a lady in yellow sweater politely asked  “Do you ladies need a drop? ” like how it happens in movies. Without a second thought we hopped in and it turned to be quite an exhilarating ride. The ladies conversed between themselves while I sat there listening in, all the while coughing up dust. With my limited abilities to listen in, all I could gather was, the  lady was a local celebrity of sorts and her name was Geethanjali. She dropped us in the market and suggested a good restaurant for lunch.

Renu and Sarah were college friends and had known each other practically their whole lives, they were the true ‘besties for life’ I would say. Even though we had bit of an age gap I never felt out of place . They were super affectionate and so easy-to-talk to, I couldn’t be more thrilled to have them as my trek partners . After having lunch, Ladhak’s local food, we walked around in the market, picked souvenirs and then got going, we had a trek briefing scheduled at around 4 back at the homestay , time when we would final meet the whole trekking group face to face.

After quick power nap we assembled in a common area. Our trek Leader Pawan and Trek Guide Rigzon were already there, eyeing us, doing a mental calculation whether they could carry if we fall on the trail. Funny but strict, the two started the trek briefing, explaining about do’s and don’ts while we all listened. Unlike my previous trek group, this was a fun group most of them in their mid-40s except for few young chimps in late 20’s and mid 30’s. Looking at the group I hoped when I hit that age I would be as fit and jovial as these guys were. “The Tiffin” already cracked us up with his stories. Subhash’s stupid jokes, Raju’s cute smile, Mouuli’s dumbness, Chandhar and Srikanth’s wise discussion and not to forget our gorgeous ladies “Pee-in-pants” jokes I couldn’t have asked for a better trek group. As Rigzon had to organize things for our trek which was supposed to start the day after tomorrow, he left early, but not without a word of warning – “be ready and well prepared for the upcoming trek” and of course a sweet farewell.

Pawan was still with us, explaining what can happen in the mountains if we don’t listen to him. Finally when he left it was 6. As we had to do last minute shopping and get the fitness certificate from a doctor, we hit the road in Tanis taxi, a cab driver whose number we saved from noon’s trip.

“Jullay” , ladhaki way of saying “hi”

I wished everyone who would take a little trouble of giving us a warm little smile, an experience you never have in big cities.

The evening consisted of me giving gyan to Mouli on punctuality while we were separated from our herd, looking for the group, more gyan to Mouli, final finding the group, doctors fitness report and last minute shopping followed by an amazing dinner. All 9+1(Mouli who joined our group previous day) of us seated across, chatting, passing the dishes, smiling on stupid, silly jokes, it was then that  I knew ,  I would be going back with more memories than I intend to, it’s probably true what they say , “The best things in life are the people we love, places we have been and the memories we make along the way”


                                                                                       To be continued…