February 13, 2011
Trip to Naina Devi from Mandi Gobindgarh(350km)
My father came back from the office and was having his dinner, when he asked me if I wanted to go to Naina Devi, the next day. I replied in affirmative to his question. So, it was decided that we may leave at 8 in the morning. I slept at around 1 at night.
I woke up at 8:15 am, that too when my dad came to wake me up.Any how, I got ready in around half an hour and we had morning tea together. We left for Naina Devi at around 9am. It was a nice cloudy day with little showers of rain drizzling. So, we were on the way to Naina Devi, going via Sirhind, Morinda and Ropar. When we reached Ropar i.e. around 80kilometers from Mandi Gobindgarh at around 11am, we stopped to have our breakfast. It was Hari Sweets where we halted and had our breakfast. We had Chane and Bhature in the breakfast.
Then, after the breakfast, we left for Naina Devi. With lot of obstructions on the road, we started with the upslope of the hills leading to Naina Devi. While we were driving towards the shrine, we were met by some landslides. We had to wait there for good 30 minutes, till the workers cleared the roads. But, while waiting for the roads to be cleared, I didn't feel bored, as the scenic beauty around just stole my attention and left me spellbound. I clicked some pictures around. The roads were cleared now. So, we again started off for Naina Devi.
The drive till Naina Devi was too good. The famous Bhakhra river was flowing along the road. It was a very nice view. We reached Naina Devi in another half an hour and started the final journey towards the bhavan. We waded through the narrow streets towards the Shrine. It was a very crowded courtyard of the Shrine. It seemed as if many books were stacked together so as to leave no space to even let the air pass through it. All the people were chanting "jai mata di". Two of the worshipers got into quarrel, for one of them entered into wrong queue. The others said,' Mata ke darbaar pe ladne aye ho ya Maatha tekne?(Have you come here to preach or to fight)." While we were in the queue leading to the shrine, many monkeys came and started staring at us in anger. Some of the worshipers got scared and started shouting. I asked them to stay calm and not to look into the eyes of the monkeys. So, in another 5 minutes, we entered into the shrine. It took us 1 hour to reach the room where the idols were kept. It was only 100 meters away.
Finally, my parents took blessings and we moved out of the room. I didn't take blessings as I am an atheist. Then, we had some rest in courtyard of the premises. The cold breeze was blowing and it was a nice atmosphere around. After sometime, we started to go back to the parking, where our car was parked. Then, in no more time, our driver started off for the journey back to our home. He drove till Fatehgarh Sahib in Punjab, and then boarded a bus back to his home, as we had to go further to Rajpura for dinner. So, I drove after that. We reached Haveli at Rajpura at around 5pm. I had burgers at the Mc Donalds, while mom n dad had there dinner inside the haveli. So, after the dinner, we came back to our place. It was a 350 kms long trip and a very nice one.
P.S. Pics are here.