I am not sure how many people enjoy their daily routines but sometimes I can't hate anything more. Last weekend, I decided to escape this hell of concrete, heat, noise and insecure phonies whose lives are driven by other insecure phonies.
So, on Friday evening, I came back from office, packed my stuff and was ready to leave. No planning, no bookings, nothing. And I thought of Murree. I had been to that place just once before and that was during night so all my memories were overcast with darkness. I left home at midnight without telling anybody where I was going. My housemate thought I was going back to home. My parents thought I was in Lahore.
There's this funny thing about going to Murree: you can't be alone. You shouldn't be alone. Either people go in groups, mostly young people and families, or couples. Here's a snippet of conversation I had with bus conductor while ticket checking process...
Conductor: 'Bau Jee tusssi kallay ho?'
- Dude (?) are you alone?
Me: 'Haan yaar'
Conductor: 'Kisay nou naal leh ana see ;)'
- Should have brought someone along ;) (notice the wink)
Me: 'Shayad aglay saal'
- Maybe next year.
It was a great trip, the best I ever had. Although I was duly noted, and a few times questioned, for being alone. Only this part was weird and unexpected. I explored different places and wilderness (got a sunburn to prove). Actually I have a time-log with me. Some of it was posted to my Twitter
account but all of it was written on diary I had with me. I will post that later.
Got to catch a wink.
Here's timeline from my Moleskine...
- Friday, April 17
- 11:03pmLeaving home...
- 11:34pmLocal bus didn't show up. Taking Rickshaw
- Saturday, April 18
- 12:01amAt bus terminal
- 12:09amJust bought a ticket to Murree
- 12:30amBus is ready to leave
- 2:19amJust stopped at Bhera for some rest and food
- 5:15amIn Islamabad, G-9 I guess
- 5:48amA newly-wed couple on seats ahead of me just started a public show of affection. I feel odd
- 6:32amJust reached Murree. It's colder in here. My ears are blocked
- 6:44amJust checked into a hotel near GPO. Room 302 (horror). The manager asks why I am alone. Going to sleep
- NoonWoke up 10 mins ago. Having a greasy breakfast of Halwa Poori. My pencil is all smeared with
- 12:50pmWalking towards Pindi point. Beautiful views and it's chilly
- 1:14pmMy feet hurt badly. Never wear new shoes on trips
- 1:29pmWoohoo! On Chairlift for the first time ever. Exhilarating!!!!!
- 1:35pmTwo boys on a chair passing by ask me if I am enjoying alone. I say yes :)
- 1:55pmOn the other side and into the wild. If some beast kills me here, nobody would know about that
- 2:21pmWalking back to hotel. Would take a nap
- 2:36pmOh wow, school kids running all around
- around 7pmJust got up. Want to eat something. And then mandatory wandering on The Mall
- 7:18pmIt's too early to eat something. I would rather get some coffee
- 8:55pmAt Usmania restaurant. Waiter asks me if I am waiting for someone or alone
- 9:20pmJust had a proper meal after 3 days
- 10:07pmBack at hotel and watching TV
- 10:51pmOut again for coffee
- 10:54pmAs cold as it would be in Lahore during January. Should've brought jacket
- Sunday, April 19
- 10:20amJust woke up...
- 11:36amChecking out of hotel. Manager gives me a nice smile. I think he robbed me
- 11:43amWalking towards Kashmire point, without breakfast. Yeah, let's lose some weight
- 12:07amAt Kashmir point and looking at snowy mountains; one more 'first ever'
- 1:36amIn a some kind of rural area down the road. Watching people doing daily chores
- 1:51pmJust helped a shy couple with couple of photos
- 2:10pmAt KFC. This KFC is way better than many in Lahore
- 2:34pmFeeling a bit homesick. I am not going to leave this place until someone asks me to
- 2:36pmPhone battery is low. Forgot charger home. Argghh!
- 3:52pmSitting on a bench below The Mall
- 3:55pm - 5:10pmRead Moby Dick on bench with the greatest view I ever had for reading
- 5:15pm - 6:15pmWandered on The Mall, there was a lonely cow on road
- 6:36pmHaving tea at KFC
- 6:39pmAn offensively beautiful girl who was standing against the glass has gone back. Did you hear a heart crack?
- 6:48pmDamn, she is back. I am not the stalker type but what the heck? I'm going after her
- 6:51pmShe is blowing bubbles in the air
- 6:54pmOh my, she looked at me with unsuspecting eyes
- 6:59pmFinally got the bench with a great view. It was never vacant. She's moved on. I just preferred a nice view over her
- 7:09pmI will say goodbye to this place in about two hours
- 7:18pmAn SUV just passed by. It's reg. number was 111. And it was written with the help of three rifle bullets. To hell with peace
- 7:36pmGetting cold, just like winters
- 8:01pmAt bus terminal
- 8:33pmBus leaves at 9
- Monday, April 20
- Around midnightAt Bhera, all empty