Having shifted to the urban center some years ago, I had forgotten the sight of the greenery that filled our countryside. A few weeks ago, when my husband suggested that we visit a neighboring village, I was very much against the idea because I had some assignments due and I needed to concentrate on it. Coincidentally, my daughter also had her History project due the following week and she needed time to work on it but then we all thought we needed a break from the mundane routine and the drive away from the town that sunday would do us good and went along with the idea.
We drove through the familiar bumpy road till Dewathang and turned away from the highway towards Samdrup Chholing. As we drove further, the road got narrower and we could almost touch the leaves from the moving vehicle. The air became much fresher and the tree leaves along the road looked fresher. We stopped at the roadside to take a look around since it was my first trip along that road (my family had already been there before).
“When was the last time we went for such drive?” I asked my family.
My children replied, “We haven’t traveled much together after we got transferred here”.
It was true that we had hardly gone to any place for weekend after shifting to this place about two years ago.
Earlier, we would always be on move during the weekends driving to Tashigang, Mongar and Tashi Yangtse to meet families. My husband had more free time to spend with us on weekends and we used to do many simple stupid things together then but things changed. He got promoted and we shifted to a new place. With his promotion came so many responsibilities and he got busy with his new responsibilities. We spent weekends relaxing at home because he could not go out of station more often.
We got attuned to the new life here and weekends were seen as the time at home taking care of the laundry, mopping floors and housekeeping with an evening trip to the market and some afternoons in front of the TV.
The drive to the Samdrup Chholing was very refreshing. The Yellow paddy fields smelled of the approaching autumn- the season of gold harvest and the place looked so quiet and calm unlike where we stay which is always noisy with the trucks and other vehicles plying to and fro just beyond the gate. I had almost forgotten what it meant to be in a quiet peaceful place. The place was serene with Neem trees growing along the road which gave sweet fragrance. It felt like heaven. We spent some more time and then returned after lunching at my sister’s place. On the way back, we took some time to get a dip in the river and it was almost dark when we got back. We were tired but happy.
“We should do this more often” I said. The others nodded in unison.
A drive to the countryside at this time of the year is truly refreshing.