Sunday, April 28, 2013

Most dangerous Nandour valley (Unknown Kumoun 12)

Unknown Kumon

Nanakmatta Sahib (Unknown Kumoun: 1)
Tanakpur (Unknown Kumoun: 2)
Chalthi and Champawat (Unknown Kumoun 3)
Lohaghat and Advaita Ashram (Unknown Kumoun 4)
Pithoragarh (Unknown Kumoun 5)
Jhulaghat on the India-Nepal border (Unknown Kumoun 6)
Baitadi Nepal (Unknown Kumoun 7)
Dharchula (Unknown Kumoun 8)
Ritha Sahib Gurudwara (Unknown Kumoun 9)
Basantpur village (Unknown Kumoun 10)
Last village on the mountains (Unknown Kumoun 11)
Most dangerous Nandour valley (Unknown Kumoun 12)
End of trail at Chorgalia (Unknown Kumoun 13)
I wake up in the morning and drink a cup of tea at tea shop that is already open. No other customer is here so no parothas are being made so I ask for omelet with buns. I am told that Gujjars are camping in the closing of the Nandour valley and they will give me food. Total walk is about 40 kilometers to the roadhead. 6 km on the trail where I will sight a pond, then 6 km to the pond, 6 km to the down then 12 km in the Nandour Valley till road head. Everybody has recommended me to stay with Gujjars in their barricade and as a tradition they provide food and bed to the stranded travelers.
I again have a strong temptation to pay a visit to my little best friend Rishi. He is so poor and also so happy and I want him to stay happy forever. I want to do something for him, want to give him a good life, or if possible to adopt him anyway. He has severe eczema on his head and want to take him to some medical doctor. His father worked in a restaurant in Chandigarh but then he got hurt and now he is incapable to earn. His mother works in the farms whenever she is required but not much farming in this area and everybody is dependent upon rains. Anyway – I have no time to attend anything. My project for today is walk 40 kilometers and reach at the road and then catch some transportation to Delhi. Tomorrow evening I have to catch the flight to Newark NJ USA.

Village in the mountains

I visit Masterji in his one room home to say thanks and goodbye. He gives me a list that he prepared in the candle light at night about all the problems of this little village. He has great hope on me. I don’t know what to do with that list. Later on I wrote a letter to Masterji from USA explaining him that I was just a traveler, nothing special. I made several copies of that list and mailed it to many famous leader and ministers. Could be a hit or miss – most probably a miss. Fortunes don not change that easy.
I begin my walk as I have to cross the last mountain ridge of my trail. I keep walking and keep walking in the dry outer mountains. I get thirsty but there is no water. Then luckily I find a grove of pine trees and find a water pond, water is not so good but I drink it anyway. Then I walk another 4-5 kilometers and realize that I am lost. I have walked more than 6 kilometers and haven’t seen a bifurcate. Or may be their 6 kilometers are my 12 so I keep walking and keep walking in the dense pine jungle.

Last of the villages
I am alarmed when the path begins to descend or may be for a while so I keep walking but it is descending for the next 3 kilometers. Now it is definite that I am lost. Well not really lost, way to return back to the village is straight forward and I can get back but I lost the valuable time. I am suppose to arrive in Durga Pipal at noon. I lost two good hours at wrong path and it will cost me another good two hours to return. Then I don’t know where I missed the trail split. I haven’t see a single person on this trail for 15 kilometers.

Last of the villages
Heavyhearted I make my return on the same way. I keep walking till that general area comes where I felt in the beginning that I was lost. I find a trail leading to the mountain so take it. It is now 1 PM and I am hungry. On the mountain ridge I see a pond below, so I found the way but lost 2 precious hours and lots of energy. I keep walking down towards pond and I am dead thirsty. Only one home is visible off the trek and I take the path and go in that home.

Village in the mountains
I hear someone crying in there and I enter inside, a very frail old man is lying on the bed completely soaked with his own vomits. He cannot even speak properly and I ask him water and in turn he asks me water. I look around in the house and in the kitchen and do not find even a single drop of water. Probably all other members of the home are gone out to their farms. I am not in any situation to do anything for the old man and probably he is going to die. I come out and shout in all directions to find someone but none replies.

Last of the villages
I leave all my medicines next to the old man. I want to give him ciprofloxine but there is not a single drop of water. I try to find sugar or gur to give it to old man but only a fistful of daal and a fistful of rice are there in a glass bottle. Probably there people are depressingly poor. I see a bare kitchen with only 3-4 bent aluminum pots and torn rags of the clothes. Nearest water is 3 kilometers away at the pond. I clean the old man and pray god that all goes well. Old man sees me leaving and he starts crying again but I cannot help him anymore or I have to find water and food for him. I put some money under his pillow and walk out.

Last of the villages
I reach at the pond in one hour. I find only two people there, one girl about the age of 7 years with some goats and a boy about 12. Water in the pond is not drinkable and I ask them for water, they point me to the way going down the cliff, to the valley. It is 4 PM and by all means, I am very late already. I have two choices – either I must return to Old man’s home and share the miseries and they have no food or extra bedding. Or I should take my chance and move on. I ask the boy about the home of old man, boy turns out his grandson. He says they have no money for food or medicines. They scavenge and eat grasses and herbs or drink milk of the two goats. I tell the boy to take water to the old man but he seems indifferent. I give him 20 rupee to take a water bottle to his home, only then he begins finding some bottle.
I ask them about the directions and they point to a path descending in the wood, they say everybody comes and goes through that path. I take this stair like trail that is going down the wall of the mountain. Since the water at the pond was not drinkable so I keep walking on steep trail carved in the wall like the cliff and mountains are utter dry and even trees are stressed due to the lack of the water.
After some descent I find water oozing from the wall of cliff and I drink it up and then resume my descent. Due to constant descent, my toes are hitting the wall of my shoes and I feel intense pain that I cannot help. Each step brings pain and I hope I will find Gujjars in Durga Pipal and spend a night there. Forget reaching Delhi tonight, it ain’t going to happen.

Nandhour Valley
To the amazement more water is oozing from the wall and now trees are green and cliff is grassy and cool. As I walk down droplets of water becomes a tiny waterfall and then this small waterfall becomes a cascade along the path. Path crosses over this cascade several times. Now trees are huge and foliage is dense and ravine is moist and full of birds and bird songs. But I have no time to listen to birds because I am extremely hungry and my feet are paining and I have fever also. I have no jacket because I gave it away at the wedding home.
At a place I sit and open my shoes and find my feet swollen. I have never seen my feet at this size. I have no slippers. Somehow I again insert my feet in the boots and now it is extremely painful.
Amazingly, Dry Mountain turns into a big waterfall and area is shaking with the noise and vibrations. I keep walking down on the steep stair like path and hoping that my miseries will come to the end very soon in Dugra Pipal. My shoes are wet also because several times I had to cross over the water fall. Now suddenly I notice the water fall is now crashing at the other side and area where path is leading me is again dry.

Nandhour Valley
At 5 PM I hit the bottom in the ravine with lots of trees like Pipal etc. Pine trees are gone now and I am in the Himalayan base territory. Several paths crisscross but there is nobody to tell me the directions. I keep walking in the direction of the valley to find the brook that must be made by the waterfall and I find it and then I keep walking along the brook. In three kilometers other brooks are also coming and meeting together and make a small river. Then at a flat area by the river I find a small Gujjar settlement in a dirt perimeter wall but I see nobody there. Place is rampaged by elephants and abandoned. All over I see Elephant poop.

Nandhour Valley
It is 6 PM and I have no choice but to keep walking by the river, whenever I find my path blocked by cliffs, I wade in the river to get to the other side and when that side too is blocked then again I switch sides. River is growing and now water is waist deep and I have to swim in it. As I come out of the river on the flat side, I see elephants and they also see me they make noise and all run to me. I again jump in the river and begin running in frenzy. Rocks hit me on my knees and I keep running, wading in the water to the cliffs. Water makes a whirlpool in the cliffs and it is deep and I am now swimming in the circle. Elephants are still closing up on me with a great noise. My backpack and shoes are now full of water and I am unable to swim and water is pulling me down. I take a deep breadth and let myself go down and luckily I find the bottom not far and I jump at the bottom and luckily come out of the whirlpool. After some more jumps in the deep water I again find myself in waist deep water. Elephants are not interested in me anymore and they walk away from me. At other bend of the river I come out. I feel feverish and take my temperature with the thermometer is about 104F and I keep walking on the bank luckily that is flat now.

Nandhour Valley
There I spot the footprints of a big cat on the wet sands. It must be cheetah or leopard because it cannot be of cat’s. It cannot be a dog because we all know dogs. I keep walking because I have no choice. This is the only flat walk-able area, next to me are the cliffs and then there are cliffs touching the river at the other side. I am physically in worse shape. Flat area is again blocked by the cliffs and now I have to again cross the river to get to the flat area at the other side and this time river is quite large and I doubt if I have strength to cross it over.
I simple want to die here or pass away. I feel intense shivering. I give up crossing the river but try to walk by the river at the cliff side. A large rock is hanging on the way and I have to cross over it. Leopard foot prints are also leading towards the rock. But I have no choice and I brace myself and I find a place to put my foot and I climb over the rock – and here I see a leopard. We see each other at the same time or may be it was seeing me already. It jumps I let go the rock and fall in the water and it lands over me and as my backpack is over my neck, it mauls it and fall over me in the water. As a reflex action, to find some anchor I hug its silky muscled body but it slips away. In the water it separates off from me but I feel its nails are stuck with my backpack and I am also dragged out. Then its paw is released.
Suddenly I hear tin can banging noise and a donkey braying and shouts of a man. I stand up in the waste deep water that is already pushing me and leopard is again about to charge upon me but due to the noise it runs away.
At the other side of the river I see a man with a loaded donkey, he is banging a canister frantically to scare off the leopard. He shouts to me but I am unable to figure out what he is saying. He points me to come to the other side and I wade and swim in the water or rather drag myself and somehow make it to the other side. Then I climb on the hill and over the trees to get to the man. There is a trail that is coming from Dugra Pipal that I missed somehow.
To be continued … just one last post left.
More miseries ahead …..
Más miserias delante ……..

Verbascum (Mullain)
by William BOERICKE, M.D.
Presented by Médi-T
Has a pronounced action on the inferior maxillary branch of the fifth pair of the cranial nerves; on the ear; and respiratory tract and bladder. Catarrhs, and colds, with periodical prosopalgia. Quiets nervous, and bronchial, and urinary irritation, and cough.
Face.–Neuralgia affecting zygoma, temporo maxillary joint, and ear (Menyanth), particularly of left side, with lachrymation, coryza, and sensation as if parts were crushed with tongs. Talking, sneezing, and change of temperature aggravate the pains; also, pressing teeth together. Pains seem to come in flashes, excited by least movement, occurring periodically at same hour in morning and afternoon each day.
Ears.–Otalgia, with a sense of obstruction. Deafness. Dry, scaly condition of meatus (use locally).
This plant is found all over the Himalayas below 6000 feet.
This is a wonder medicine for ears.
If you find this plant, pluck off some leaves and insert these in a clear glass or plastic bottle and hang the bottle in the sunlight for several days. Its oil will be extracted and deposit at the bottom. Use that oil in the ear and see the magic.

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