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....

13 May 2010

An uncertain heaven, received into the bosom of the steady lake

Little puffy clouds dotted the sky. I had a glorious wild view of the little lake called Tanu-Jubbar which was no larger than a big pond. All around was a damp and intricate wilderness. Boundless forest undulated away from its shores on all sides, densely packed, and enveloping nameless mountains in its succession. It was a perfect lake of the woods.

The morning was a bright one, and perfectly still and serene, the lake as smooth as glass, no ripples marking its surface. The surface crinkled a little when the wind gently blew over it. The dark mountains about it were seen through a glaucous haze. The wood thrush sang as if inspired by the morning, his song came distinct over the lake to me... What was more remarkable, the echo which ran round the lake was much louder than the original note; the sound being reflected like light from a concave mirror.

Tanu-Jubbar is the landscape's most beautiful and expressive feature. It is earth's eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature. The trees growing on its shore are the slender eyelashes which fringe it, and the wooded hills and cliffs around are its overhanging brows.

A little temple sits at the edge, much like a friend who decides to give you company because they sense in your countenance a contemplation that needs no words, nor any validation.

[Note for the detail-minded among my gentle readers: Tanu-Jubbad is best accessed from NarkandaJustify Full. It lies a mere 10 kilometres from Narkanda if you travel on the highway which goes past the path leading up to Hatu Peak. A little further on it there is a fork in the road, one leads towards Baghi and Sungri and the smaller one towards Nankhari and eventually, Tanu-Jubbad. There are no eateries, stalls of any sort close by, so if you plan to picnic by the lake-side, please carry your own food and water. The usual injunctions of leaving behind only footprints and taking away only memories apply!]


Ravinder Makhaik said...

Your tribute to this serene mountain lake stirs up a whole lot of memories that remain embedded for life.

A visit to the spot, even today, evokes a prayer, Thanking God to be here and to be alive.

Gallimaufry said...

Thank you, Ravinder. Finding Tanu-Jubbad was serendipitous.

Kamal Sharma said...

It's magic works on everybody. Beautifully expressed.

Ranjani Mitra said...

After reading your post, I just want to visit the place......for my inner peace to resonate with the peace of the beauty......

Gallimaufry said...

Thank you, Kamal. We're lucky to live in HP, eh?

Ranjani, you know what you have to do...

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