My walk took me 4 kilometers down the Sangla-Chitkul road. One of the things that I really like and would repeat to anyone who wants to take any vacation in the future, is walk.
Only by walking will you move at a natural pace which allows you to take in the space that you’re in, the people that are around you and centralize you where you are. One year since the trip to Sangla and I remember aspects of it so vividly, as compared to a holiday in Leh in 2010 – while I remember the sights, I don’t remember the journey and travelling is 80% about the journeys we make.
These are some of the photos that I took on that walk…
When I came across this woman, I thought it was a baby in the sling on her back. When I realized my mistake we (the ladies and I) had a good laugh over it! I don’t think you’ll ever find a happier people than in the hills, and I can understand why.
Remember I told you about those baskets which traversed the gaps of the valley? Well they’re also used to climb up mountains. (In the background, you can see a bit of Kinner Kailash, a sacred mountain. People stopped to fill water bottles of the sacred water. I didn’t see the point, a stone would have been more worthwhile.)
I must confess, this is a heavily edited image, but it was done so that you could understand what I saw, as I saw this scene from behind my tinted sunglasses.
These two bros hung out at a corner in the road. I stood more than 200 meters from them to shoot them discretely. But when there’s hardly anything or anyone for miles, they noticed me and scooted to another spot.
It was at the end of this walk that I sat down and just took in the view. It occurred to me, that while I would get photographs of the trip, I would be hardpressed to come back with photographs of me on said trip!
Gorillapod and camera in hand, I crossed the road, set the frame, guestimated the focus and shot a self portrait. One of the only photographs of me on this trip.
I turned back, and suddenly, my bag felt a little heavier. my shoes, a little tougher to lift. By now it was 5, and when the sun passes the mountains, that’s sunset.
I moved my butt down the road and must have made it a kilometer when a yellow jeep honked and pulled over. Inside, the two gents asked if I needed a lift. I very happily accepted.
Hopping out at Sangla, I said my thank you’s and goodbyes. I didn’t think I would see those two again.
But sure enough…