Sunday, 7 July 2013

Lets Get Going....

The best thing about monsoon is that it makes me want to get out of my home. And the best way to enjoy this season by taking a road trip. But the hectic schedules never allow me and my family to take a long road trip. So there's nothing much we can do but remember this wonderful trip we took way back in 1997.

Today, if it comes to taking a road trip to the hills, the first preference of car that people have is that of an SUV, but our trip from Delhi to Patnitop with frequent stops in between was in our family car Maruti 800. In those times, nobody really knew of SUV's and having your own car was considered a luxury for any middle class family. So in December 1997, when me and my sister had our winter vacations, and our dad had time to take a 10 day long trip, we packed our bags and headed out to for a road trip with our first stop at Ambala.

My Taiji has her maternal home there and was there with my two cousins. We stayed the night there and then the seven of us in the morning headed towards Amritsar. Non stop driving for my dad. Three adults and four kids and nobody cribbed about the lack of leg space which now is a major issue for four kids in the back seat in our present car which is much much bigger.

The Jalianwala Bagh, Amritsar
After the hectic driving for my dad and an even more hectic trip for my Mom and Taiji  (Keeping four kids entertained in a car for one whole day is a huge task!) we found a hotel and crashed there for the night.

Next day we went around sightseeing in Amritsar. The Golden Temple, Jalianwala Bagh, and Wagah Border.
I remember going to the Golden temple that evening and being awe-struck by the beautiful lighting of the Gurudwara.

Next morning we headed towards Jammu where we met my Tayaji. He was posted in Udhampur at that time and was in Jammu for some official work. That was 31st December 1997 and we celebrated the new year in the Jammu Cantonment Mess.
The next day we lazed around and relaxed in the Cantonment.

And then we again picked up our car and headed towards Udhampur. Situated among lush green forests of eucalyptus, this place was the perfect place to unwind.Named after Raja Udham Singh, it serves as the district capital and the Northern Command Headquarters of the Indian Army. And the army accommodation that my Tayaji was given had this beautiful view of the Himalayas from the main sitting room.

The good old Maruti 800
We just relaxed and enjoyed the calm and serenity of that place. Two days later, we all packed into the car again and headed towards Patnitop.
47 Kms from Udhampur, Patnitop had a a snowfall the night before and was covered in a white blanket. I remember going absolutely bonkers when I saw the snow for the first time. In those seven years of my life, that was probably the best moment when I got down from the car, scooped up a handful of snow and threw it smack on the face of my then 3 year old sister! *wink*

Snowball fights, Making a snowman and in general going absolutely crazy. Those are the memories I have of that place.We ran and laughed and had a ball that day!!!

Oh! the snow!!!
We came back to Udhampur for another two days and had the time of our lives!!!
While going back, we started early in the morning and my dad drove non stop till kurukshetra where we have our ancestral home. Me and my sister slept in the backseat the whole time. Now when I think of it, it must have been pretty hectic for my dad, and to say nothing of our poor little Maruti 800!!

From Delhi to Patnitop, an approx of  694Kms. 10 Days. The super awesome feeling of being on a vacation with your cousins. First snowball fight of your life. Yes, it was the best possible road trip of my life. There have been other trips but none can compare to the joy that this road trip gave me.
Now when all four of us are busy with our respective careers and studies, I can just hope that someday we would all come together again and get out on the road for another awesome road trip in another car with Ambi Pur "Thai Dragon Fruit" fragrance. That fragrance is just mind blowing!!! Though back then we didn't have an a/c in our car so having a car fragrance would have been of no use. But now we can enjoy this awesomeness of "Thai Dragon Fruit". 

I'm the one in the yellow trousers :)

The above post is in relation to the "Ambi Pur- The Perfect Road Trip Contest". To know more about Ambi Pur, look no further than