Saturday, May 9, 2009


Ok so until now i was writing my stories under the pseudonym of Jatin.But now i want to write this real story which i hope u readers enjoy.
Well i had this dream of living in the dense forests,with fresh water flowing on the side and me living in solitude far away from polluted minds and mindsets of the cities.Basically wanted to live the life of the early man knowing fully well that it was not possible now.You see even i have responsibilities.

Anyways this was in July 2007.I had gone to my village GudKagal,Kumta.The Agnashini Mountain stood tall,handsome and mysterious front of our grandfather's home.Lot many stories about the mountain were going around about it,of ghosts who would strike down people in the narrow creeks in the night after 12,of foxes and wolves which had inhabited the forest in the mountain,of an old king's 'NIDHI'(meaning pots of golds).
The king was KrishnaDevaraya and he had a Guru named Vidyaranya Pandit of whom we are all the descendents.The story was that some of the king's gold was hid by the Guru's disciples in the mountains on the request of the King.
Right then we had arrived in our ancestral home.Another of my techie cousin had also come along with us.He was a adventure freak and he had as many as 65 treks,4 bungee jumps and many other adventure sports to his name.We had planned to go for a trek of the Agnishini Betta,but this had to be a clandestine adventure.The stories told were so horrifying that none of our parents would have any hesitation in dismissing our request.
So the plan was set.We were to demystify all the stories we had heard one by one.We had to take care also of one another thing.Poisonous king cobras and small 'dhoolbakris'(dust snakes),pythons and other poison heavy lizards.So we had to take care of taking anti-venom injections.Having gone on such dangerous treks before my cousin Manjunath Bhat had sufficient experience in handling all the logistics.
We included two other people in our group.One Raghu Bhat-the local boy who had attempted to scale the Agnashini before(also my maternal cousin) and another Murthy who just wanted to part of something unique.He was off late going through a bad patch in his life as he had failed in degree exams and was having a rough time with his parents continuous rebuke.He wanted to just get away from all that atleast for a while.
We were to go in the night after 12 when all in the home were sound asleep.One problem was my grandfather used to sleep outside on the cot in the 'Angala'( for people not familiar with the term-its an open area in villages outside the house made of cowdung).His senses even at the ripe age of 81 was better than any of ours.So we had to be extra careful.Then there was the dog problem-"Raju" was always alert even in its sleep.
We had kept our backpacks ready in the evening in the water pump room so that no one would notice it. Bhat and Murthy were supposed to meet us near the base. We slowly slipped away from the home attracting of course some snarls from Raju.It was 11.45 pm and we had made our way through the narrow creek adjacent to our jameenu.(meaning land).
The road leading to the mountain had traces of tar here and there but due to the coastal rains they were ravaged.It was as though the skin was ripped apart and only the bones(stones) were showing. We first waited for the time to strike 12.So after putting all the medicines in one container-the antivenom given by our good friend Babu doctor included.
Murthy came stylishly dressed not looking one bit that he was coming for a rigourous trek. We looked up the giant mountain,although not big on height it was spread over a large area with the Arabian Sea to the left of it and the Agnashini river to the right.Agnashini beckoned now and we started our trek to unravel the various stories we had heard as young children.
As we made our way through we came across an isolated shack.Bhat said that it was haunted in his usual eyes wide opened manner.He had this habit of giving wind to any rumours.Otherwise he was a purohit in the Amnnavra Temple under the guidance of his father.We dint believe him at first.Manju in his usual abrasive style went inside the cottage to check it out for himself.We all followed him although Murthy stood outside(he dint want to take a chance ;) ).
There was a tiny chimney burning in the corner which indicated to us that the shack was habitated.The doors and the ceiling had begun to leak not being able to take the battering of the rains.The shack was very shabby and on the floor lay a half empty notebook.It was written in malayam. Kumta had a history of people from Kerala coming and settling there either as fishermen,priests or even pimps.
None of us could make any sense of it.Just then we heard footsteps at a distance outside.We rushed outside and hid behind the dense shrubs.The footsteps were becoming more shriller and shriller.Just then we saw a person wearing a cap,torn shirt and dhoti getting into the shack.
The Gud Kagal village was small and hence we would know most of them in the village.We had not been able to see his face properly.Just then he again went out with the notebook which we had seen.We wondered which person in his right senses would roam around at this hour,but then weren't we doing the same thing.
Then Manju said that we dint have any more time to waste as we had to get back to home by dawn.So we decided to drop the case of the mysterious wanderer then and continued up.After a continuous trek of half an hour with nothing much eventful to have happened we decided to take some rest.As it rained the previous evening it was hard to find a place which was not marshy or wet.
Just then we heard wolf cries. It seemed whatever it was ,it was nearby.Manju and Bhat picked up some wood and lit them,just in case there were animals around.Our bronze coloured torches had become redundant in these days of mobile torches.
To be continued soon.............

1 comment:

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