This post is a part of 24-day Marathon fiction called Yaariyan. To read from the beginning, click here.
Friday, August 14, 2015
As the twilight melted away, the sun rose in the sky, with its red–orange glow painting the horizon; it brought warmth and hope to the trekkers. It is a new day, a present! As everyone comes out of their tents, they feel nothing but heartfelt gratitude for the morning rays.
Tarun and Karthik collect small stones running up and down the nearby hill. Everyone tries to understand what they are doing as they sip their morning tea and eat breakfast. It is only after thirty minutes that they realise what they are doing – many start walking up towards the hill to join them in their endeavour after completing their breakfast.
Today was Day 5 on the trek – they had to trek from Gadsar to Satsar – a land of seven different coloured lakes! It was a 12 kilometre easy walk on the meadows, barring a few steep ascents in the beginning. They would also meet Army men at Satsar Army checkpost – India’s third line of defence from the LOC before reaching the first lake of Satsar.
As more and more trekkers joined in the euphoria, madness grips the campsite. It was a great idea, why hadn’t anyone thought about it before?
The stones were arranged into lines to read out India from the base of the hill. Delhi-ki-kudiyaan were sitting in the basecamp, Ruhi clicking pics of the work-in-progress! Ruhi was feeling alright now, the medicines and care taken by others had worked. Sara was narrating the incident in Russian as Chris was shooting a video in GoPro camera to document the efforts of the trekkers.
Karthik ran down towards his tent, breathing deeply, his lungs could feel the gush of oxygen pouring in. Today was indeed going to be a beautiful day! He removed something from his backpack and started walking uphill towards their new art installation. He opened the tricolour with proper procedure, as taught by his dad and laid it above the stones between all the trekkers.
‘Fantastico’ shouted everyone, now familiar with the lingo of VJTI engineers group! Dashodh walks towards them singing songs on India. He puts his ice hammer right in the center and joins the trekkers as they all sing songs and gear up for group pics!
Ye desh hai veer jawaanon ka Albelon ka mastaanon ka Is desh ka yaaron, Is desh ka yaaron kya kahana Ye desh hai duniyaa ka gahana
Shouts of India, India!! echoe in the valley. They wave to the Army men of Gadsar checkpost, and salute them for their vigour and courage! As they walk back to the campsite, patriotism fill their thoughts – there is no cynicism in it – just possibilities. Also, the fact that newly-elected Modi government was inclined towards making things work made it hopeful.
As they packed their backpacks for beginning the trek for the day, they look at the beauty of their arrangement in green hill. It could be a point of reference on this route, thought Tarun, delighted by the fact that everyone helped him to make it.
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