Action : A brush with death.
Place : Hornbill resort on side on Kali River in Dandeli.
Members : Abhinav, Ankur , Mohit and Shantanu
Mohit was the fun of the trip, the guy with never say die attitude, he can go on and on.
It was April of 2008 and we had a long weekend with us. we needed a plan and a destination. Abhinav always believes that this trip was his brain child and I leave it to him. I had just joined my new company and it was 3 month for abhinav in Microsoft. Mohit and Ankur joined us for a trip to dandeli we had the route map with us , couple of beer can and all the chips in the world to eat.
Somehow I get bored in a long trip when I am not driving, so had a couple of beer and slept off peacefully at the back of travera, while Abhinav and company explored the map. I woke up in morning when I saw some ready to sleep while others already there. I took the command from Abhinav and started steering the way to our destination. The jungle were quite facinating. the road even more with bamboo covering from both sides of the road.
We reached the resort somewhere in afternoon. Abhinav the last day had been pretty busy in getting us accommodation at dandeli since it was long weekend and we had a last minute plan. He succeeded in convincing the resort owner to let us a single bunglow for 4 of us. We checkout out our accommodation and it was awesome. Kali river coming straight to our doorstep and turning to right. An isolated place it looked like heaven amidst all the greenery.
We got back in shape after a long ride and jumped in to lunch right away. The afternoon started with natural jacuzzi. We laid around the gushing water of kali river in comfortable rocks, after which it was time to explore the area on boat. We had two boats men from the resort accompanying us, both of them wanna be rafting instructors. So here what we did stupid afteron a high. We started to do a reverse rafting, i.e. instead of rowing with the flow we wanted to do it against. The first time it was good we went uphill the class 3 or 4 rapid and the boat made a nice u turn. The wannabe instructor then asked us to keep all the items we had in a bag and give it to the to tie to the boat. I never estimated the gravity of that request. I kept all the things in that bag and it was tied. it had camera . specs, clothes, wallet and mobiles. I kept the newly bought shoes with me. We did it again this time we went dangerously close, but in the end it was nice beautiful then back. We wanted to do it the third time. We rowed and rowed forcefully making all kind of noises, and we were there. Right where the rapid drops on the rocks. But wait what happening, where am I ??? why am I not able to breathe?? what is this in top of me ? ah my backs hurting against the rocks.
Possibly I am dying!!!
This is what was going in my mind for the second. We toppled towards right in the rapids , me and mohit were under the boat and abhinav , ankur were thrown off. I remember trying to shove off the boat on top of me, but with no avail. After some time the boat went away and I came back to the top. Still flowing with the river hitting against the rocks in middle of no where.I shouted is everybody around/alive i could see abhinav he was on the other side, but eventually all of s were floating again. We jumped back into the the boat and all hell broke loose.
We lost the shoe , clothes and spec. The mobile and camera were as well taking a bath in river.
Good part was we were still alive. Let check if we are fine. I had my back and legs all red with scratches and lost one of my nail. But hey we are still alive.
Back to the resort we ordered some snack with vodka to remove the pain. Next day morning was again pretty good. we went to the town to get a pair of glasses for abhinav and a manual camera since ours went into water. We had a good time relaxing in a local bar while abhinav got his glasses fixed.
The owner of the resort learned of our misadventure gave us a tree house to spend the next day and man that was even more beautiful then the bungalow. the windows looked at the kali river flowing underneath and the jungle on mountains the other side. I spent the afternoon relaxing on the sofa while the rest of the guys went for the rafting again but this time with professionals.
the evening came in and we planned to go for night walk in the jungles, The bad habit agian we convinced the guy who was to take us to jungle to go at 10 o'clock instead of normal 7 when its considered safe. The night walk to the jungle was scary with no one ready to be the last person while walking. the shiny eyes of the wildlife did not help much. After a while we reached a open space which the guide said was once a mining site. We saw the clear sky with twinkling stars. The calm of the night was disturbed with the guide's voice "all come closer" we spotted something in the bushes with bright eyes looking at us. Not sure of what it was the guide made sure we were watchful next on. We walked back though the forest and it was wow, just too beautiful.
The next day was a non exciting Jeep safari to the jungle. Comparing it to the last night walk it was just too non-adventurous.
The trip was amazing with so many things in it. Some day I'll go back to find my shoes, clothes and spec which was a gift not to be lost.
The Kali river water was so sweet to drink that mineral water tasted bad. I would not have tasted it if I wasn't drowning :)