Friday, January 20, 2012
Travel: Picnic at New Digha or Bag Danga
Nature is not close to our cities. To have a glimpse of perennial beauty of nature, you have to visit the rural side of West Bengal. Fortunately, I got a chance on 15.1.2011 to go closer to nature. In simpler terms I got a picnic to enjoy for a day in the vicinity of nature.
The picnic spot was at New Digha (Bag Danga), governed by Hoogly Zilla Porishod. The picnic was organized by my language learning institute.
On the evening before the picnic, our team of 5 students went to market. It was not a very nice experience as we had to carry lots of vegetables from the market to the institute and our bags became really heavy.
On the very day of the picnic I had to get up at 5 pm. It was not possible for a lazy guy like me to wake up on a winter morning unless my mother took the responsibility. Our reporting time was 7.30 am. I reached in front of the institute much before that and saw nobody. Thankfully, the wait for others was not long as my brother-like Bonodeep came early. We went inside the institute and others started coming. Two cars arrived just at 7.30 am. By 8.00 am, we were all inside the car and our two cars got traffic-free roads as morning’s natural advantage. Sitting in the car and watching the pitch-filled road running backwards from the window was a nice experience altogether.
Our cars quickly touched places like Dunlop, Konnogor etc. until we reached our destined ground of New Digha. If you are familiar with the place, ‘Digha’, you must be wondering about the sea. But you are wrong this time! Because New Digha near Chandannagar has nothing to do with New Digha sea-beach. They are two distinct places.
Anyway, we got off our cars to witness a long queue in front of the picnic spot. The entry fee was Rs. 10. It was a large area near river-side divided into several picnic spots. We approached towards ours. Generally, I prefer to choose a picnic spot that is very calm and quite. But New Digha was full of chaos as lots of picnic lovers gather up to the same place. It was like many birds put inside a small cage - all chattering in their highest scales and making cage look like a parallelopiped of noise. The situation got worse as some other picnic candidates came next to us and they started their booming sounds of music boxes.
The students got distributed for various activities. Some played cricket and badminton, some started helping the cooks, some started move here and there to get an idea about the whole place. I was among the last people. We came outside the picnic spot (out of the whole chaotic place). The lovely river was flowing beside it. We moved towards the other side of the river. In the other side, there were bushes of bamboo trees. We went through the path filled with dry leaves. It was a kind of adventure for urban people like us. The look at the picnic spots from bushes of bamboo trees was not a picture perfect one. We saw that lots of dishes were dumped on the sides of the river. “Can’t authorities make a better disposal to human wastes?”, I thought to myself.
Anyway, the bushes of bamboo were not filled with so many abandoned dishes. Me and one senior student, Ranju-da spent quality time there. I suddenly saw one big black bird was in the leaves-covered-boroughs of bamboo trees. I meantioned that to Ranju-da. He also looked at it and said it might be a crow. Upon close observation, we understood that it was not a crow. The bird had red eyes.
I certainly related the bird’s identity with mine. The bird was very away from noisy picnic spots. Here amidst the calm flowing water of the river and in the yellowish greenery of bamboo trees, it had found its supreme abode. Also, it was certainly lonely like me. I had the camera to take photos of that bird. But I did not intend to do that. Not every beauty of nature should be caught by camera. Let mind have its own camera to catch something. That was the best part of the picnic.
We returned to our picnic spot. The lunch was right on time. The Bengali / Indian menu included Bhat (white rice), Muger Dal, Alu-Kopir torkari, Beguni, Murgir Mangsho (meat of Chicken) and chatni. Some said, Beguni could have been more crispy and Alu-kopir torkari could have been tastier, but I really enjoyed all the items. After having my lunch, I served others with my limited capabilities.
After lunch, we stayed long to our allotted spot. We packed up our remained goods and reached to our institute by 7.00 pm. The things that were biting me were not only fact that humans are polluting the river sides but also the chilly wintry wind of an evening.
Hope, you enjoyed my picnic virtually.