So I got thinking about.......... "what do you want to do with your life next?"
I have studied law, now I am in my final stages of CS course, I just started off as a consultant......and yet, this question! For a moment I was shocked my conscience dared to ask me that!
"Still you are asking me what next?"
"Yeah....Are you happy?"
" Yes....I am happy!", I was getting defensive.
"Then what are you doing here?", asked me, teasing me.
"Mountaineering course.......of course!", (like doesn't she know? Dumbo!)
"What makes you travel and go stumbling around new places and experiences when you are satisfied with what you have?"
" I like to explore...."
"And what great thing are you trying to find in yourself?"
If at Level one I was fed up of people, in Level 2 I was fed up with myself!
If Vipassana tested my mind power, mountaineering tested my mind and my body creating such a unique experience that opened doors to desires and hidden powers.
"You have something in yourself you have been running away from for a long time, you know?"
"Janaki, ab chalo. Tum bohot slow jaa raha hai aaj!", one of the Instructor shouted from the back.
I am not new to such dialogues with myself. One reason I guard my "me time" is because I love my own company. But somehow, all these years I could convince myself to do something my way. During this mountaineering course, I realised that there was some higher power - with its own mind, and it had started exerting pressure on me to behave in a way it likes. The rest of the climb and the course I kept convincing it with answers, quoting experiences from the past and why I do what I do. Until that day when I fainted. There, it did not listen to me. There, it clearly showed what it can do if I don't listen to it. " You can't take me for granted Janaki and you dare not cross my limits!"
" It's just a matter of another half an hour, why can't you bloody co-operate with me and walk this patch?"
" Is it just about this short patch? Really? The whole course is over! When else will you listen to the answer that I have been shouting out in your face? What do you keep searching for all the time? YOU DON'T BLOODY HAVE THE COURAGE TO CHASE YOUR DREAM! You betray me every single time to get along with parents, friends, society and lovers! Today, I won't listen to you, I give up! Do what you like!"
I tried one final time to stand, lost control and fell off on my face. I could hear people, and see them but I couldn't move my hands or legs. Someone had to lift me up and get me to Bakhim. At the forest house, I regained consciousness, I could move my legs and hands. But I was extremely disturbed. That night I shivered for almost 2 hours. No matter what who did, I couldn't get my body to calm down. I was given medicine, Deepa hugged me, Sharvani tried putting me to sleep like a child. She held me tight and asked me to breathe. I just couldn't control my mind to help me control my body.
My mind was out of it's mind!
Somehow that night passed by, and next day I climbed down safely to Yuksum. A part of me had completely withdrawn itself from the daily activities though. I couldn't forget that experience of my mind/ conscience/ soul ( whatever you call it) refusing to co-operate with me. I wanted to run home to mamma. In my life so far I have never been this home sick. I am not someone who misses parents and family.
After we came down, we had a day off. We had our cross country running competitions and rock climbing competition. The written exam and finally the Graduation ceremony. As each day passed, I grew more distant from myself. There were no more voices in my head, there was just silence.
Now for several days after I got back home, I have been operating on an auto pilot mode. Physically I am in Goa, mentally I still remain with HMI. And spiritually?
My next course of action, and the path I have to take has been paved before me. I realize that it was always there. I either refused to see it, or didn't have the courage to step on to it because it would be a tough lonely journey.
But what has to be done, must be done! Whatever the stakes may be.
I do not know if it is the best thing to do - but what I do know is that it is the right thing for me to do.
That's all from me for now. Himalayan Mountaineering Institute's Basic Mountaineering Course has been instrumental in giving me courage that I was scared to tap within myself. I would recommend this course to everybody, whether you like the mountains or you don't. Whether you like adventure or you don't. Come here and take home the ultimate experience of your lifetime, all for just Rs.4100/-
Okay I sound like I am advertising for HMI, but well! On a serious note, if you are a thinker, traveler, adventure enthusiast, have a creative mind, respect life and the mysteries it offers, a student at heart, young or old, whoever you might be........if you need a kick in your life to feel you are alive and breathing- then this is your place! Period!
|On Graduation Day: Blue: Basic course; Red: Advance course students|
References & Notes:
1.Thanks to : Deepa , Hardik, Hemang and Rohit for the photos! If I have used photographs belonging to people I haven't mentioned here, please let me know.
2. For another point of view on HMI Basic course, read Deepa's blog : http://searchinformycompass.blogspot.in/2014/05/because-mountaineers-have-no-sense-of.html
3. To know what an advance course is like, please read Sai Pitre's blog: