This monsoon we can go to Valparai and get wet with the trees. Valparai: Go to Munnar where there is no crowd and get wet When he saw a girl in the front seat of the car, Vazhachal pointed to the questions of the forest guard at the check post.
‘Those with you?’
Friends, I replied.
His itch (traveler’s slang) stopped abruptly just because the answer to one of his next two questions was, ‘I’m a journalist’. The car started to run in joy as it overcame the onslaught of the most hypocritical creature that could come in front of travelers in the jungle. This car is going to Valparai. There are no destinations in Valparai where you can run and make a full stop. Valparai is a village on the Kerala-Tamil Nadu border. Tea Plantations, Eucalyptus Trees, Western Ghats – Views Photostat of other hill stations in Kerala. Therefore, the journey to Valparai is the destination. June is another bonus. The monsoon brings new life to the forest. A 71 km trek through the jungle watching the rain fall through the windows.
The check post at Vazhachal will open at 6 am. It will be closed at 6 p.m. As the train begins to roll out of the banana grove, you can see the light coming down through the gaps in the sky sewn with leaves. Stalking shrubs, rain-soaked rotten trees, stretched limestone-like road lines; The forest is becoming wild.
The forest is calling …
Disappointing sunlight comes in when you reach places where there are no trees. There is not even a hint of rain in the sky. Occasionally there is water in the Sholayar Dam only from the point of view. Will it have to return without getting wet? When the forest goes away, Malakkappara comes. Solitary tea gardens. Malakkappara is a green belt between Tamil Nadu and Kerala. When you reach Malakappara, you feel like you have reached a hill station without climbing much hills. Suddenly nature changes. Monochrome houses and green windows and jackets. If you read the conifers along the way, you can say that it is Munnar. Sholayar Dam, seen from a distance.
Valparai can be easily reached from Malakappara. Rain clouds increase as you cross the check post in Tamil Nadu. Although it does not seem to rain, the clouds add color to everything in nature. Hairpin bends are welcomes you occasionally. If you are not careful, Tamil Nadu registered buses will rush to you with a kiss. The humps on the road are similar. It comes before our eyes without warning. It took less than three hours to reach Valparai. But then came the real dilemma. Where to go? The rain is pouring away without letting up to enjoy. There is no range on the phone to ask what to see in Valparai. With that blessing, we are going to see Valparai without prejudice. The car started driving on the road marked ‘Pollachi’.
Valparai; Uncrowded Munnar?
After leaving Valparai town, you can go back to the tea gardens. In the distant Western_Ghats, bald as green hills. In the gardens beneath the darkening sky, men in the distance whose faces are not clear. “If you blindfold me and bring me here, I will believe you,” said Albin, who was in the driver’s seat as he drove down the road between the gardens
‘No one will say this is not Munnar Gap Road’.
True, Valparai feels like uncrowded Munnar. Valparai will attract more people who want solitude and greenery than Munnar if pride is replaced. Valparai is the opposite of Munnar with its fenced plantations and traffic jams like the traffic signals in Kochi.
Boundless tea gardens
The road to Balaji Temple is at 38th Hairpin on Pollachi Road, 10 km from the town. We climbed the hill looking for directions as there was nothing else to see. When we reached the top of the hill the view was of a closed gate and a gloomyly dressed guard. The temple will reopens at 3 p.m.The temple is located on the estate of a private tea company, Periya Karamalai Plantations. The guard said that it was a place where elephants and leopards used to come. It was raining in the distance as we talked to him. It rained like a circle, scattering silver threads across the green and watery hills.
A Whistling rain Coming…
.We left the closed gate and went down to the yard of Karamalai Higher Elementary School. It is raining without any formality.It’s not raining, it’s raining as the paint gently shakes off from the brush. Feels like raindrop made of melted fog. When it falls on the body, the raindrops dissolve and disappear.There is a kind of cotton tree in the school yard. Against its backdrop are mountains covered with clouds. At the base of the deciduous tree are berries reminiscent of small boats. A tree that crumbles like a man in the rain.
I looked back. The mist slides through the eucalyptus like a long coat that lives in the wind. A harp is played between the trees in the rainforest. Raindrops on the wings of the cold echo through the eucalyptus forest like spirits. The three people who were with me – Albin, Indu and Jeena – had already come down when the rain called. They were waited under the cotton tree for raining. We all lived in that moment alone, like water falling on the doorstep of memory. There I realized that the colors in the rain are indescribable beauty. The mustard yellow of the wild sunflower shone like a sun in the rain. The blue and white wildflowers continued to dance in the hope that raindrops would come and kiss among the grass.
A tree that rains alone.
He stood looking at the sky in the rain. I remembered Alan Moore writing that God is in the rain. The four of us had a few spectators to watch the rain get wet, as if we had never seen rain before. Just when they thought it was crazy, we sent them to the tea shop on the hill and the rain went down to another branch.We started driving back at 3pm. The view from the opposite side is of swollen Tamil Nadu buses and SUVs coming to celebrate on Sunday.
Before saying goodbye to raindrops …
Athirappilly is reached through unannounced humps and deep hairpins. There is only one dry waterfall. It is jumping across the stubbornness of some. It was roaring in my ears like rain on Valparai. As the road to Kochi becomes clearer, the darkness of the forest fades away and the thinness disappears.