This Blogpost entry has been written for 'The Perfect Road Trip' Contest by Ambi Pur and indiblogger.in
I don't even remember for how long I wanted to go to Ladakh with my friends, when we were students money was the constraint. When we started working then we rarely had the time, since our weekly offs never matched. And even when stars aligned and our offs matched it was end of the month meaning no money.
Like most of the desires of life, this desire of mine was also going to go unfulfilled, that’s what life is and you can't feel bad for this. There was no point feeling down about things which are not in your hand like rain or sunshine. To make the matters worse we all were in different cities. I in Chennai, Rohil in Bangalore, Purnendu in Mumbai, Nitin in Delhi and Hardeep in Chandigarh.
But like they say every dog has his day so did we. Last year after much deliberation all of us 5 friends decided that we would take a month off from the office and no matter what this time we would tick this item from our bucket list and visit Ladakh.
Since we had 1 month time to enjoy our road trip we extended our original plan to include all the cities where my friends were as part of our Road. Everyone decided to meet me in Chennai so that we could begin our journey together from Chennai.
We decided that we would give one day to each city and then follow the following route -
Chennai -> Bangalore -> Mumbai -> Delhi -> Chennai -> Ladakh and Back
Came July and we were ready to board our rented Land Cruiser all the way to Ladakh to experience the Heaven on earth. So there we were all decked up with our bags full of clothes and food for the longest journey of our life. But something was very much missing from our experience. The Car smelled a bit funny. But we were not going to let such a small thing put a stop on our happiness. I knew exactly the remedy for all unpleasant smells.
I made the car stop at a shop and bought all 5 versions of Ambi Pur car perfume and sure enough as soon as the perfume took its effect the entire car became as fresh as a garden in spring. There was nary a hint of funny smell anywhere in the entire car now and journey became super enjoyable.
We all visited the wonderful places in Chennai; we were together after a very long time. Although the weather was hot in Chennai but our Land Cruiser's AC along with Ambi Pur made sure that the entire Car was as comfortable as a 5-Star hotel room.
'Dil Chahta Hai' this song became our official song for the journey and we finally left Chennai on a journey which promised us an unforgettable experience. Enjoying the greenery around soon enough within 5 hours we were in Bangalore.
Singing 'Ye Dosti Hum nahi todenge' we entered Bangalore, and moved to Rohil's room to stay the night there. After devoting the day to enjoy the pubs and awesome weather and pathetic traffic, we called in an early night and went to bed by 9 PM. Although people like to travel long distances during night but our car and Ambi Pur combination was so good that we had no problems traveling any time of the day.
We left Bangalore at 6 AM and we were lucky not to experience any traffic jams like previous day and it was very good in deed. Entire time our car's stereo was belting our one timeless classic after other and due to super power of our car we reached Mumbai by 8 PM and we were so tired that we went directly to a hotel to have dinner and then went directly to Purnendu's place. next day was going to be Mumbai's.
Next day we all went to Siddhivinayak temple to gain Lord Ganesha's blessings for the journey ahead. After Mumbai began one of the longest legs of our journey. So we decided to break the journey to Delhi in two part one part from Mumbai to Udaipur which took us around 9 hours and then after a night's rest there another part Took us through Jaipur -> Gurgaon to Delhi in 10 hours.. We spent 2 hours in Gurgaon alone due to the traffic at the Shankar Chowk.
We had enjoyed the rainy season to the fullest till now and we in no mood to stop.. We were 6 days in our road trip and we had enjoyed each and every moment of this. More than anything the part that we all were together enjoying the trip of our life mattered.
It was raining in Delhi as finally Monsoon had arrived in Delhi and we enjoyed each and every moment of it. Drive to Chandigarh was a comparatively small part and it took barely 3 hours. Till now our shortest leg. After logging in the hotel. we excitedly planned about our journey ahead. Even though we had spent last 7 days in the car eating and enjoying, our car still smelled fresh all because of Ambi Pur.
After resting in Chandigarh we started for our final destination Leh - Ladakh. But since the path was treacherous now full of ghaats and mountain trails. We decided to take this slow our first part was to reach Srinagar which took around 12 hours. We rented a houseboat in Dal Lake and spent night in another Heaven on earth and India’s jewel Kashmir.
We started for Leh early morning at around 8 AM when the weather cleared and we got a go ahead from Indian Army to move ahead. The path to Leh was just so beautiful and it kept on taking our breathes away. I kept on clicking photos throughout the journey. We had to stop many a times just to appreciate the magic of nature which was spread all around us and we were travelling on one of the highest roads in the world. We reached Leh at around 5 PM and gorged ourselves on the wonderful cuisine available there and soon afterwards we went to our hotel rooms to sleep.
Next day we were refreshed after a good night’s sleep and visited monasteries and lakes and enjoyed the crystal clear water of the lakes and enjoyed the views which were too good to be true. I went mad clicking pictures after pictures of our group and all the wonderful Scenery around. We immensely enjoyed our 5 day stay in Leh-Ladakh. After once our stay was over we left Leh to our normal life. Our plan this time was this that we would leave everyone in there city. So we did just that. Apart from Ambi Pur another exceptional part of the journey was our song… here goes
Dil Chahta Hai, Dil Chahta Hai
Dil Chahta Hai, Kabhi Na Beete Chamkeele Din
Dil Chahta Hai, Hum Na Rahein Kabhi Yaaron Ke Bin
Din Din Bhar Ho Pyaari Baatein
Jhoome Shaame, Gaaye Raatein
Masti Mein Rahe Dooba Dooba Hameshaa Samaa
Humko Raahon Mein Yoonhi Milti Rahein Khushiyaan
Dil Chahta Hai, Kabhi Na Beete Chamkile Din,
Dil Chahta Hai, Hum Na Rahe Kabhi Yaaron Ke Bin