Monday, March 19, 2007

On my way back... was raining, like it always does. I ran to catch my 3 pm ferry but missed it by a whisker (read 6 minutes). An old punjabi uncle jee, who saw me there and approached me. He must be atleast 90 going by his demeanor.

"Chalo Chaleye", he said.
I was a bit confused by what he just uttered.
"Haanjee", I said very politely.
"Tusi Nanaimo naee chalna", he said.

A young punjabi munda approached from the other side.

"Papajee, aee saade naal nayee nee", he told him

Although, it was a bit bizzare but the old uncle jee reminded me of Dadajee and a smile came across my face.

There was still 2 hours before boarding, and there were few punjabi kids making noise in the waiting area (someone new reading this must be thinking that I am somewhere in Punjab). I picked a quiet corner a bit away from the main lounge and started reading Amitav Ghosh's "The Hungry Tide".

"The dolphins quiet, regular breathing had lulled Piya into a doze from which she was woken by a sound that seemed to come out of a dream..."

The story of Piya and Kanai, set in the hauntingly beautiful Sundarbans, took me to a different world altogether. I was in the small raft when Piya was following Dolphins with Fokir rowing the raft and Tutul pointing to the Dolphin and her calf. I could feel the Dolphins around me hunting for fishes, going through channels as the tides were changing. I was in Morichjhapi when Nirmal had to take refuge in Kusum's dwelling with Horen. I was in Lusibari when Nilima asked Nirmal where he was going and he lied to her for the first time..."

The ferry for Nanaimo was leaving with Uncle jee...

I went back to the departure lounge, waited a few minutes there. A group of girls soccer team was was coming from Vancouver and the girls were very loud for me to concentrate on the book. The ferry started loading a few minutes after and I grabbed a chips packet and took my corner seat near the window. It was still raining outside. The ferry started moving very slowly and I could see a bird sitting on top of the railing area from my rain shattered window.

The weather was lazy enough to put me to sleep. I got up in 15 minutes and decided to go outside for a little stroll to freshen up. It was still raining but not enough to wet one completely. I went to the top floor of the ferry and saw a beautiful small lighthouse as the ferry was passing by it.

The first word that came out of my mouth was "Aah...heaven". The lighthouse was as tiny as the island itself. I found it fascinating that I was passing through these small islands while in my backpack was the book set in small islands of Sundarbans. I tried imagining the setting of the novel with my passage but the sophistication of islands on my way were no comparison to the rawness of Sundarbans.

We passed along the most beautiful house on the next island. An orange colored house located facing the ocean with forest all around the place. It was the most visible house that I came across during the journey that passed through several small islands. It was the kind of dream house, one can only wish for...

Our ferry was leaving a long trail behind and seeing the ferry cut the rough waters is a sight in itself. A big lump of steel cutting cold water and making the way is an impressive sight indeed.

It was beginning to get dark and the lights outside the ferry were coming on.

My eyes were on the water though. A lot of things were going through my mind like the waves moving from one side to another by the passing ferry. I was looking for my next shot when I saw "it". I thought my eyes were playing games with me and this was not possible but then "it" jumped out of the water to confirm to me that "it" was indeed a dolphin. I had heard stories how sometimes dolphins would come beside the ferry and usually they would come in a bunch, so if the captain saw them he would announce and everyone would rush outside. But this dolphin seemed to be lost from its crowd because now my eyes were searching the deep water but I couldn't see anything but the wavy darkness...


Blogger faith said...

uiii... inni longggg post..
wait let me finish my lunch first :D

12:25 AM  
Blogger faith said...

cool.. very interesting post.. wow what a journey !!

and nice pics too *smiles*

12:42 AM  
Blogger The Bhandari's said...

:) hey me too had been in ferry last sunday although different destination :P, went to Indonesia.... and this was first time I travelled by ferry :) pics are cool

7:04 AM  
Blogger Colors said...

Lucky you! I envy you so much! I can just imagine how perfect the setting was to read The Hungry Tide. And you ended up seeing a dolphin!! Wow!! That must have topped it all...amazing! Wish you had gotten a chance to click its pic too.
Lovely pics and a beautiful writeup...I could not only imagine every detail but even felt myself there. Hey but the 1st, 2nd and 4th pics are not loading. I'll check again from home.

11:07 AM  
Blogger Reema said...

omg.. wow! u covered the journey beatifully.. loved reading :)

1:18 PM  
Blogger Marlee said...

Hey...nice narartion with lovely pics...i liked the orange house! Ricky, get one n we can all come holidaying! :-D

6:56 PM  
Blogger All Is Whole said...

Journey seems to be awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1:04 AM  
Blogger Fuzzylogic said...

Your description reminded me our trip to Quebec and St.Lawrence river. Have you been there yet?I think you will love it incase you haven't. Make a trip there and go for whale watching. It's amazing!
And I remember the drive to the St.Lawrence river is dotted with such beautiful landscapes and such tiny houses perched on top of mountains and near flowing lakes and rivers.
By the way you've been tagged.Check my blog for details!I hope you don't mind that I tagged you!

9:34 PM  
Blogger Urvi said...

Wow... v.nice post ricky.

Beautiful journey... beautifully narrated :)

11:18 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

co-incidence or what???? i saw dolphins during my last vacation... they are awesome creatures... only coudn't take pics because it was raining.... :(

10:48 PM  
Blogger Khamakha said...

time i get bak to tht book too..

and u had succha memorable time..gud u posted:)

ur world is flat wala post is fantastic too..

1:15 AM  
Blogger Ricky said...

faith - He he!! You are always hungry :P

Thank You :D

the bhandari's - Same pinch phir toh :P

How was the trip and where are your pictures :D

colors - He he!! Yea, that was the best part and I couldn't believe myself but it happens with me a lot where I go through something I recently read about or something.

Thank You!!

10:33 PM  
Blogger Ricky said...

reema - Thank You jee

marlee - Thanks!! Ha ha, good idea. Let's start asking for donation. Only $5 Million needed :P

prashant - Thanks Sir and welcome to my space :)

fuzzylogic - I haven't but now I want to. I love small towns and actually Quebec is on my to-visit list :D

I don't mind at all, its an honor but will do it next time for sure. Thanks :)

10:36 PM  
Blogger Ricky said...

urvi - Thanks!! Nice to see you here after a while.

anks - Yea, watching dolphins in the wilderness has its own charm. Me too couldn't click the pics as it was raining and the ferry was moving in opposite direction to the dolphin :(

sonali - Do read. I loved it.

Thanks for reading old posts too :D

10:38 PM  
Blogger Marlee said...

Ricky, where theres a will, theres a way! We could all donate n try!!


12:06 AM  

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