Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Forgetting to start again

(All Photograph by Anvita Lakhera.)
On an impulse we get off the bus at some village that we can’t even recollect the name of just because as the bus had twisted and turned its way up the mountains we had chanced upon that pond half obscured by trees with a duck house and the proud homeowner swimming blissfully close by. 20 Villa Duck 08 said the inscription below its roof. So naturally we stopped for a while and admired the housekeeping skills of the Mallard before continuing our hike back to Grindelwald.

Only to meet the Kleine Freuden Baume (Small Pleasure Trees) waving their multi-hued branches in the soft mountain breeze as the flutter of paper birds and gentle rattle of painted tin cans contemplated what a small pleasure really looks like. At least when seen from the eyes of young school children and aimlessly wandering travelers.

As life and light started to pack up for the day we sat at our hotel porch looking up to the overwhelming North face of the Eiger till it seemed to move inch by inch closer to us when our eyes caught the diminutive (in comparison) range at its right side, at least from where we looked. Quite appropriately countless seasons of snow and rain had carved into the thick, dark rock Winnie the Pooh with his nose tilted up seemingly mesmerized by the play of cloud and wind against the blue sky but more likely to be sniffing in search of honey. Watching him watch the sky we were almost certain at any moment he would ask, “Did you ever stop to think, and forget to start again?”

Around forty eight hours after spying Winnie the Pooh in the Swiss Alps we find ourselves in a Lebanese eatery in South Kensington surrounded by facile comments about the world economy, white wine and the Indian Navy budget while the lady who loves to dance, blissfully but unsuccessfully, matches the belly dancer step for step.

The distance between simplistic and simplicity is probably more daunting to ascend than soloing the Eiger North face in 2 hours, 47 minutes and 33 seconds.

We stop to think but prefer to forget to start again.

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