Why this blog is called "Gallimaufry".

gal-uh-MAW-free\, noun.

Originally meaning "a hash of various kinds of meats," "gallimaufry" comes from French galimafrée; in Old French, from the word galer, "to rejoice, to make merry"; in old English: gala + mafrer: "to eat much," and from Medieval Dutch maffelen: "to open one's mouth wide."

It's also a dish made by hashing up odds and ends of food; a heterogeneous mixture; a hodge-podge; a ragout; a confused jumble; a ridiculous medley; a promiscuous (!) assemblage of persons.

Those of you who know me, will, I’m sure, understand how well some of these phrases (barring the "promiscuous" bit!) fit me.

More importantly, this blog is an ode to my love for Shimla. I hope to show you this little town through my eyes. If you don't see too many people in it, forgive me, because I'm a little chary of turning this into a human zoo.

Stop by for a spell, look at my pictures, ask me questions about Shimla, if you wish. I shall try and answer them as best as I can. Let's be friends for a while....

17 April 2010

Crystal wandering water...

TRAVELLER
Why dost thou wildly rush and roar,
Mad River, O Mad River?
Wilt thou not pause and cease to pour
Thy hurrying, headlong waters o'er
This rocky shelf forever?

What secret trouble stirs thy breast?
Why all this fret and flurry?
Dost thou not know that what is best
In this too restless world is rest
From over-work and worry?





THE RIVER
What wouldst thou in these mountains seek,
O stranger from the city?
Is it perhaps some foolish freak
Of thine, to put the words I speak
Into a plaintive ditty?




TRAVELLER
Yes; I would learn of thee thy song,
With all its flowing numbers,
And in a voice as fresh and strong
As thine is, sing it all day long,
And hear it in my slumbers.




THE RIVER
A brooklet nameless and unknown
Was I at first, resembling
A little child, that all alone
Comes venturing down the stairs of stone,
Irresolute and trembling.


Later, by wayward fancies led,
For the wide world I panted;
Out of the forest dark and dread
Across the open fields I fled,
Like one pursued and haunted.

I tossed my arms, I sang aloud,
My voice exultant blending
With thunder from the passing cloud,
The wind, the forest bent and bowed,
The rush of rain descending.


I heard the distant ocean call,
Imploring and entreating;
Drawn onward, o'er this rocky wall
I plunged, and the loud waterfall
Made answer to the greeting.

And now, beset with many ills,
A toilsome life I follow;
Compelled to carry from the hills
These logs to the impatient mills
Below there in the hollow.


Yet something ever cheers and charms
The rudeness of my labors;
Daily I water with these arms
The cattle of a hundred farms,
And have the birds for neighbors.

Men call me Mad, and well they may,
When, full of rage and trouble,
I burst my banks of sand and clay,
And sweep their wooden bridge away,
Like withered reeds or stubble.


Now go and write thy little rhyme,
As of thine own creating.
Thou seest the day is past its prime;
I can no longer waste my time;
The mills are tired of waiting.

~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow ~







[On a prosaic note: I went walking in the mountains this week. Walked, on an average about 20 kilometres a day, and I do mean walked. Not trekked, or climbed or hiked. I stopped frequently to smell the flowers, to catch my breath - both from the sheer beauty of the views and from fatigue. Solvitur ambulando, someone said, "it is solved by walking". They could not have been more right. I came back with many mental knots unravelled.
The route I roughly took was Ani - Khanag - Jalori - Sojha - Giyagi - Banjaar - Gushaini - Bhatahar.]

6 comments:

Ranjani Mitra said...

River....the ultimate healing medium. Your pictures made me crave to see more, what else !!!!!

Gallimaufry said...

Thanks, dear girl.

Mordu said...

In one Nityin's blogs on a similar trip (but on a motorbike), he cautions against such dangers as leopards and other wildlife. Don't know if he was kidding but I wondered how you managed to find appropriate overnight accommodation en route?

Gallimaufry said...

Mordu, if I told you, I'd have to kill you ;)

Anonymous said...

G: Would have loved to go there with you. S.

Anonymous said...

i love walking to and would have to follow the same route if life takes me there someday

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