It is always fun to pack your bags, and head out for the unknown. But sometimes, the known places can give you a taste of unknown unknowingly. Summer vacations are the only time I get to relax for a day or two and read books and go out on small trips. But never have I ever thought that a two-day trip will get me this refreshed.
I’ve never been a big fan of Sea, Oceans and Beaches. And I have been stuck with the idea of the blunt blue of the water and damp yellow of sand for a long time. I find mountains more adventurous and beautiful; and forests for the wilderness and uncertainty. Fresh air, aplenty in both the places but the hot beach repelled me.
But as my summer vacation was nearing its end, I decided to pay a small visit to the nearby sea beaches; a place packed with tourists mostly drunkards and chaotic ones. I was skeptical, but when the first blast of fresh air hit my face as our bus headed towards the destination, I found hope.
Our bus was scheduled at 4 in the morning. From the Bus depot, my mother and I boarded and definitely regretted my decision of booking a Non AC state transport. If you travel or have traveled in a long distance State Transport of South Bengal, you’ll know why. But the bus turned out to be extremely fast, the co-passengers were asleep and, I with earphones plugged in, enjoyed the view outside; how drastically the cityscape faded into agricultural lands and huts and small villages and then there was only green and the sky.
By 8:45 a.m. we reached New Digha. My uncle came to pick us up from the stand and we drove off towards his hotel.
The sultry late summer weather was far from pleasant. We dropped our bags in the room and freshened up, washed off the weariness of 4 hour-long journey and had breakfast.
The last time I visited Digha, I found it too crowdy, not a place I will be willing to visit and waste my vacations on. But I guess I was too young to judge back then. A 13-years late visit completely changed my mind.
I’m unable to express how I felt when the path through the sparse forest of eucalyptus and shrubs gave away to the vast extent of sand and sea and horizon; the horizon which I miss in the city, the horizon about which I read in books, the horizon that once induced fear of unknown in ancient us, The Horizon.
It was overwhelming. The sea and the horizon let you peep into the vastness of the world from one standing point. It lets you know that you are nothing special to the world, just like a grain of sand is to the beach; a drop of water is to the sea. Nevertheless, they contribute and their contribution is nothing less than the others. Life lessons come from nature so suddenly that it leaves you mesmerized and flabbergasted.
Sunrises and Sunsets and Clouds is what actually attracted me to this place. June is definitely not the time for sunrise or sunset but I got clouds. The white structures floating under an azure sky in afternoon, the red and orange and yellow ones in the morning and magenta in evening create a stunning scene. Sometimes, the white would get covered by the massive, deadly looking, heavy black clouds which often left the earth damp and the weather humid with a pleasant smell. And then again the whites will smile; and all this happened within a few minutes. Such drama! As I was busy looking up the whole time, the sea was shyly flirting with the sandy beach. I looked down to find the mark left by the pulling waves, a mark of temporariness, a mark of unrequited love.
And while I observed all this, the trip came to an end. It was time to return and face the unholy hours of college and lectures. The trip was special indeed. It was a time for mother-son bonding (which I seldom get, thanks to her office and my college). Two days but a whole lot of change in the world and in my heart.
I resort to a poem by Lucy Maud Montgomery, to express a little bit of what I felt.
I smile o’er the wrinkled blue
Lo! the sea is fair,
Smooth as the flow of a maiden’s hair;
And the welkin’s light shines through
Into mid-sea caverns of beryl hue,
And the little waves laugh and the mermaids sing,
And the sea is a beautiful, sinuous thing!
I scowl in sullen guise
The sea grows dark and dun,
The swift clouds hide the sun
But not the bale-light in my eyes,
And the frightened wind as it flies
Ruffles the billows with stormy wing,
And the sea is a terrible, treacherous thing
I stayed in Neelanjanas Hotel Hindustan.
A homely hotel with well maintained room. It is a new hotel, and is a bit far away from the sea, but also lets you enjoy the slice of silence. A straight path will take you to the beach in no time. They deliver prompt service and great food with a skeletal structure of staff.
All photographs are copyrighted to © Agnij Sur.