Arrived Cherapunzee at abt 8 in the evening. Came to know that town is also known as Sohra. Was looking for a place to eat and stay. A young man in his late 2os, Atanu, ‘kidnapped’ me, so what he says, and took me to his resort abt 2 kms away from the town.
Initially, I was reluctant to be ‘kidnapped’, but later we settled the deal in Rs. 2oo per night. And believe me, that’s really cheap compared to the place and facility.
Atanu is a nice guy from Assam. When I asked him: Are you a manager here? He replied: That’s what people say. But I was also travelling like you, and I ended up here. Atanu is also an intelligent boy.
I keep on remembering the comment from the American girl I met in Chilika: ‘You’re a man. Therefore, you’ve more options.’ Boy, she’s totally right. It’s because I was a man that I happily allowed some terrorist looking men to ‘kidnap’ me at night, put me in their Tata Sumo, and take me to their resort far away from the town.
The most interesting part of travelling is that, like in life, things suddenly turn unexpected. And I like that.
The weather is chillier in Cherapunzee, and awesome landscapes – perhaps much more beautiful and serene than Kathmandu in some ways. And the Cherapunzee culture is completely ‘un-Indian’. A refreshing experience.
The next day, met the resort owner, a local lady from Cherapunzee. Unlike in the ‘Hindu’ part of India, entrepreneurship is very strong among North-East women. From betel leaf vendors to restaurant and resort owners -you will find enterprising women everywhere.
The lady dropped me off to the town. She said that she had a friend from Nepal’s royal family while studying at Loretto in Darjeeling. And I told her that Nepal’s former royals are also in the tourism business. She asked me to visit often and refer other people to her resort.
There were also a few young adventure tour guides spending their time in the resort. One of them came to meet me when he learned that I was from Kathmandu. ‘So, you’re Kathmandu? My wife is also from Kathmandu, she’s a Tamang’ he said. I asked him how a boy from Meghalaya met a girl from Kathmandu. ‘oh..we met when I was working in Mumbai’, he disclosed.
I’m posting it from Shillong. Coz surfing the net is much easier and reasonable in Shillong.
Thinking of going to Mizoram side as well!