Whatever has happened spontaneously in my life [so far] has always remained good. As we say, ended up in good, this statement fails when I do things spontaneously because spontaneous and heart-felt things have always stayed inside my heart and mind as a long standing, unforgettable memory. So this trip was a spontaneous, unplanned and just-happened trip, that’s what I meant, in simple words.
I have seen numerous rivers, dams, check dams, canals, lakes jungles and deserts, well no deserts as of now. [If we consider lots of silt a desert, then yes ;)] I have always liked places and what I witnessed during my last trip was just beyond words, unexplainable.If I am asked to tell what is my favorite place of the month is, then I would definitely rank this place at the top, but no one is going to ask me, so I am not telling you the ranking standings.
We [I + JP] decided to take a break from our not-so-regular life and decided to visit some new place in our vicinity. Hamirpur is notorious for having nothing worth tourist interest so we ended up in dropping the plan and continue to sulk in our room. Then one good friend suggested us this beautiful place, which he thought was beautiful and we did not.
Not beating around the bush anymore and coming to the point, name of the place is Amtar, popularly known as Amtar Ground because we have a cricket ground at this place and training camps are organized by the state government to train new Sachin’s and Yuvraj’s and Nehra’s too 😉
On a side note, do I know name of any Hockey Ground in our state, district or country, well yes Major Dhyan Chand Hockey Stadium, and that’s all I know.
On the Shimla-Dharmshala HIghway, NH-88, when you just cross the bus stand going towards Dharamshala at the Nadaun Town, you see a huge gate on your right hand side that welcomes you and asks you to visit the famous cricket ground.
Ranji matches are frequently played here and most of the times Himachal State team ends up losing them, I hear they once lost to the Nagaland Cricket Team, if they have any cricket team playing at the Ranji’s at all. 😉
You have to take a detour from the National Highway and move into the single lane road for One ‘green and windy’ kilometer. There you will see a cricket stadium with huge walls and boundaries. However you are not supposed to stop because there is no one to stop you, you get inside the stadium, park your vehicle, ask for permission if you see anyone there, otherwise feel free to park the car/bike/scooter [I am not sure about trucks though]
The stadium is nicely built and most of times one can find players playing there. However, the stadium was not our main motive of visiting Amtar, after all we have won the World Cup now, so there is no point in watching IPL or local level cricket or whatever.
The main motive was the majestic river Beas, which happens to flow from this place and makes it an amazing sight. I have never understood the flow of Beas, it originates from Manali and then I don’t understand how does it reach Hamirpur District but anyways, I have not understood flow of Ganga, Sutlej, Cauvery or Godavari either, so nothing much to worry about here.
Walk few meters from the stadium and you happen to see a nice landscape with sand in the front-ground, water in the center-ground, and village in the background [hope you got it]. The Beas flows silently, and if I have to explain in detail, the river does not flow at all. The water is silent, the river-bed stones are still, the sand is still, even the trees are still at that place. On the other side of the river, we have a village where kids play cricket and we have a temple and we have cattle and fields and almost everything similar to this side of the river. The river does not run deep and it is some 15-20 meters wide. There is an old boat that takes people from one side to another. The old uncle oaring the boat was 55 years old and what he could do with 15 people on-board, I cannot do at 25. But yes, then I cannot do so many other things as well, so nothing to worry about.
The fair is 5 INR per trip per person and in between those trips people talk. They share their lives, their work, old days when boating was the sole medium of transportation, when kids used to start their study not before 7 years because the schools were at least 10 km away from their village and sending young ones on foot was not a wise thing to do.
Then there was an old lady who runs a sewing center in her village and she has to go to the far end of the town to get stuff for her students and employees. She was carrying something on head, which I after analyzing it carefully in terms of weight, offered to carry for her. She told me stories about her village. Village is connected to the roads but buses are not frequent, bus fare is also very high and they can’t afford spending 1 INR per km. She also told me that we have a temple in the village. Few years ago people from all the villages , at least 15-20 villages used to commute through boat because there were no roads at all. During rainy seasons, Beas is very dangerous and they have to walk all the way to their offices, shops, courts and ration depots because boats cannot handle the extreme flows of Beas. I decided there and then that I will come back in the rainy seasons too. Still-waters and mad waves are just two extremes and watching extreme ends of the same thing has always fascinated me.
I can’t conclude this trip because for me its not yet over. The silence outside has made me chaotic inside.