Mishti Doi 9 : Rohtang Raga


I am not sure if this is appropriate content, but hell – who cares anyway!! So, brace up folks – here we go…

“PPprrrrrrrrrrr” – came a sound, apparently from somewhere beneath me!

The family was out on a vacation to Manali. On a beautiful Friday morning, after a heavy breakfast consisting of several aloo parathas, curd & boiled eggs (at least, several for me), we had hired a vehicle to take us from Manali to Rohtang Pass (a high mountain pass on the eastern ranges of Himalayas about 51 km from Manali – More at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rohtang_Pass ). The vehicle had taken us through a 2 hour bumpy ride through winding mountain roads and finally arrived at the destination.

 “About an hour horse trek will get you real close to the peak, and there is snow up there as well”- the driver said, enthusiastically, as he parked the vehicle.

The proposition of seeing snow perched at the top of a peak coupled with an exciting “horse trek” sounded fascinating. For a moment though, I thought about the special bond I share with animals – dogs, cats, rats (read about them in other posts – Rattacked & Balled Over By Bob elsewhere on this blog). But hey, a horse – ahh! That sounded way too exciting!!!

Little did I know that there will be some “interesting” entertainment along the way!

We needed to be armored to survive the “sub-zero” temperatures. I put on huge furry warm clothes transforming myself into a huge gorilla look-alike organism (see pic, you can’t miss it  even if you wanted to) –  and I braced myself to HOP onto the big brown horse.

 “Do it sir, put leg one side, then just spread your legs and hop on” – Shambhu (name changed) said. Shambhu was to guide us through the trek & travel with us along with his colleague.

 I tried once, but failed to jump on! The horse seemed too big… “The horse is a big one sir, matching up to your size” – he winked. I gave him the “SHUT UP, AND HELP ME OUT HERE” look. He got the hint, and repeated – “Jump sir, come – I will help

As I heaved myself up, he helped me by thrusting his hands under my bum and giving a little “push”…

 I succeeded in getting up, but glared at him – my facial expressions changing from “How Dare you” to “I am going to sue you” to a meek “Thanks for helping…”

 15 minutes had passed since I had managed to effectively heave myself atop the horse. We were traveling in a line – my dad heading the pack and I bringing up the rear with my wife just ahead of me.  The trek was very steep as the horse maneuvered through the mountain terrain getting past the rocks, as I somehow held on for my dear life! The aloo parathas and boiled eggs were swiveling around in my stomach – “Damn!! Why did I have the heavy breakfast” – I cursed myself…

 That’s when I heard – “PPrrrrrrrrrrrr“…

 Was it me? No, no, it wasn’t me for sure! I looked around, trying to figure out what had broken the silence on this beautiful chilly morning. I gasped as realization dawned….

 My horse was farting!!

 “Shoo, quiet. Bad boy” – I said, hoping he understood English. “Don’t embarrass me now!” I ended with a meek “Please” to sound polite..

 “Pppprrrrr” – continued the horse disregarding my polite plea, as it made the steps up the steep trek. The trek was tough, and the payload at its back was probably getting too much for the poor horse to handle. I tried to think of ways to ease the burden, but drew a blank.

Wifey, on the horse in front of me, had heard the prrrrr-ing now, and asked – “Ari, is that you?”

Damn!! Damn!! Damn!! “No, it’s the horse..“. I wanted to add “Hey, don’t tell everyone now”, but it was already too late!!

Wifey burst out into peels of laughter, and went on to excitedly narrate the prrr-ing incident to ALL the members of the trek – as if she had just discovered Kryptonite!!

“PPPPPPPRRRRRRRR” – the horse continued non-challantly, the decibels rising as our trek grew steeper near the peak.

 “Ari, what is this? Control it!” – Wifey said, and burst into laughter. I did not know how to control my horse’s farting! At that moment, it appeared to be an activity outside my “SPHERE OF INFLUENCE”.

 “Ari’s horse is prrr-ing, Ari’s horse is ppprrr-ing” – my wife had broken into a humming tune.

Ppppprrrrr” – my horse joined in with the the background music – errr… “Jhankar” beats.

 I continued to be entertained with the Rohtang Raga  about 14000 feet above sea level for the rest of the trek.

Hope you enjoyed it too!! Thank you for listening!!


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