Monday, January 11, 2010

Pondicherry

Supposed to be a travelogue!





Pondicherry - One of the seven union territories of India. I had developed interest in this territory since I read about it during my school days that French is one of its official languages. Moreover, it was under French rule until 1963(as I remember). Had planned to go there from a long time. The plan materialized when my friends arranged for a trip to Pondi.
Five of us - myself, Ranjith, Ankur, Utpal and Iqbal decided that we go on a weekend to Pondi. We went via Chennai through the ECR. One could see the seashore all along the ECR. It was a wonderful view - brown and blue colors were demarcated as if someone had drawn a line. There were many beautiful beaches on the way. Some were owned by resorts which have come up in recent times. It was about noon when we reached Pondi. It was a hot and humid day; with perspiration all over the body. Our organiser, Iqbal had booked a guest house. It was a modest guest house with air-conditioned bedrooms. It was only after switching on the AC that we felt the weather conditions that we had accoustomed to in Namma Bengalooru. We got freshed up, had lunch and took some rest. It was planned that we would visit the beach in the evening.

There was a funny incident. Iqbal wanted to watch the sunset in the evening. It was very difficult to convince Iqbal that we could not see the sunset (near the horizon adjoining the sea). Even after explaining to him that sun sets in the west and we were on the east coast, he was still optimistic of viewing the sunset.

It was about five in the evening when we went out to visit the beach- it was called "Paradise" beach. We reached there on two wheelers which we had rented from the guest house management. It was a scenic beauty. Fine grains of sand, some ships in the horizon, the light house a bit far away. It was a wonderful place. The sea was taciturn. It was strange for the sea to be so silent on a Full moon day. We were able to see some fishermen returning to the shore with some good yield. They had caught varieties of fishes, lobsters, crabs and prawns. Their nets had many other kinds of creatures which I suppose were not edible because they were just being removed by the net and thrown away. As we were watching the fishes and the fisherman, Utpal who had been observing the sea came running at us. He told us to look at the sea.

We were awestruck to see what was visible. We were able to see huge waves on the horizon. Even the fishermen were taken by surprise to see the giant  waves. It was wonderful to watch; but it wasn't very difficult to realize what was about to happen. The fishermen screamed at all of those present at the beach to vacate the place. All of those who were present at the beach started running away from the beach. We too ran towards the two wheelers and as we started the vehicles the waves were very near the sea. The height of the waves was about 30 feet, near the seashore!! It was huge by all measures.


We started our vehicles and went riding towards the city to find some high place. The vehicle that I was riding had some problem and it stopped all of a sudden. Murphy's law had once again proved to be true, that too at this point of time. I had read about these kind of waves in my high school. If I were true, these are called "Tsunami". Even as this was going through my mind, I was doing all that was possible to make the vehicle start. Ranjith, who was riding pillion with me started running and I too left the vehicle at the mercy of the waves and started sprinting. I knew that I was running for my life but I did not know that I could run this fast! And as we ran, the unthinkable happened; the waves overtook us. All of a sudden, I was under water. I was not able to feel the land below me. I thought even Ranjith would have met the same fate, but I could not see what had actually happened. All I could see was turbid water. I hoped that at least others would be safe.


After sometime, I was swimming in the sea, and I could see a piece of land which was full of palm trees. The island was like a paradise; one of the most beautiful views I had ever seen. I swam towards the island and to my surprise a couple of heavily built men came towards me, as if they were waiting for me! They took me to one of the several huts present on the island. There were many people like those men, heavily built and dark-skinned. The place looked like a paradise; with several beautiful trees and flowering plants. There were also normal people like me. But there was one person who was very different from all those present there. He was white and had a white beard and hair. I was given some food to eat- fruits, some juices, etc. I wasn't sure where I had reached. I had never heard of such place.

After the food, I told them that I wanted to make a phone call and asked them where I can find a phone. To my surprise, the two men who had escorted me, told me that there was nothing like that in that place. I insisted that I had to make a phone call and asked them whether I could go to any nearby island to find a phone. But they told me that there is no island nearby. I started getting worried and raised my voice, insisting that I had to make a phone call. So, they took me to the white guy with the white beard. I told him that I had to make a phone call and that I had to go home. He told me that this place is my home. I got irritated and told him again that I had to go to my home which in India. He told me to take a deep breath and told me that I have come too far to go home. He slowly told me that I had reached the land of no return! I was shocked. I did not know what that guy was talking. I wanted to run away from that place. He gradually convinced me that I cannot ever return home. Never Ever. This was the place where the time was actually given a break, meaning the time stood still in that place. I was torn apart. I did not know what to say. I was still wondering what might have happened to me. But I realized that the fate had taken me over. I couldn't digest the fact. Soon, I looked around for familiar faces, but I was glad not to see any familiar face!


The next morning when I woke up, I was still in a shock!!!

2 comments:

Nagaravind said...

Alli benne-dose siguttha? :P
I liked the line- "but I was glad not to see any familiar face".
Well written. Are you going to be blogging here?

funblogger said...

yes, I will be. moved my pages here with a great effort ;)