Today was going to be a slow day...chilling in Mechuka.
Let me start with the fabulous hosts - Gebu & Nana. They run a homestay called Gaybo's Traditional Lodge & Homestay. They are beautiful people and importantly they were just phenomenal hosts. The kitchen is usually the most important room in the household, central to the home with an open fireplace and a chimney. Everyone gathers here not just to keep themselves warm by the fire but also eat food, drink tea and the likes. Every morning Nana and her team would give us breakfast and attended to all our requirements with a lovely smile. We spent our time in the evenings by the fireside they had set up and would step in for dinner. We were all curious - so where do your kids go to study? Are you from here? Where did you and Gebu meet, we would ask Nana.
The world is filled with so many beautiful people.
We left the homestay around 1030am and drove around Menchuka. First stop was by the beautiful river, the second stop was a meditation point of Guru Nanak and then post-tea at a local house, we stopped by the hanging bridge and had our lunch. We also saw two elderly women tending to their farm...corn, brinjals, pumpkins, potatoes, chillis, cauliflower, greens.... everything is grown here.....amazing sight to see really old women continuing to work.
Post lunch was a trek up Mechuka La near Dorjeeling. Once you cross the Yargepchu river, we reach the town of Dorjeeling, just 5Km or so from Mechuka. This trek is famous for the huge MENCHUKA sign that is inscribed at the top of the mountain just like the Los Angeles HOLLYWOOD Sign. Yes, I know....you didn't expect to see this so far away, now did you?
The trek starts from the Bumjipanga bridge, outside the main town. It took us 75 mins to reach the top. What an exhilarating experience. It was a very steep climb and only 5 of us made it to the top. The entire town of Mechuka can be seen without any hindrance. The descent was rather quick and we were down in 45 mins....10000 steps and 7kms .....workout done....drinks and food by the fireside beckoned.
It was our last day in Mechuka and I wanted to take it all in...the crisp air, the mind-blowing views and beautiful people...all wrapped in one in this beautiful town. It didn't bother most of us that we have had no internet connection...yes, only BSNL works here and who uses that nowadays?