An idea that germinated in our minds took the form of a marvellous journey that we undertook to Jowai recently. Among endless discussions and deliberations, a date was fixed. Along with our respective families and a travel loving uncle of ours, we started for Jowai. Since, it was the weekend, the route to Barapani was choc-a-bloc with cars going to Shillong and Sohra. We took the diversion near Barapani and from there onwards the road was silky smooth with clouds hanging over the edges. With every blink of our eye, we would unmistakably see a slice of heaven, or whatever the definition of heaven might mean for anyone. Virgin unexplored beauty is what you can expect to see in Jowai. The journey in itself filled us with ecstasy and we wondered what the destination could do to us.
The drive to our guest house was a mesmerizing one and after freshening up, we considered exploring a waterfall which was proximate to our guest house. The Tyrshi Falls is one of the least explored waterfall in Jowai. Five kilometers from Jowai town, Tyrshi Falls with milky white water comfortably pouring its pathway into a vertical drop instilled in us an immediate calming effect. The falls overlooked a valley below which resembled an exact dreamy painting. We then proceeded to Nartiang Village, famous for its monoliths erected in memory of the erstwhile Jaintia rulers of the 17thcentury. The monoliths silently spoke of the dauntless warriors and their sacrifices. It very much surprised us to learn that it homed one of the tallest and biggest of the monoliths named Moo Iong Syiem which is about eight meters in height, two meters in breadth and 0.46 meters in thickness. It was erected by U mar Phalyngki, a trusted lieutenant of the Jaintia kings.
It was almost dusk and we decided to return to our guest house. I drew out a chair in the balcony and tried to sync in. There was a constant buzzing and chanting of the insects which reverberated the atmosphere. The star-glittered night sky in Jowai is another tale to tell. Here, I would rather keep silent for you to actually contemplate my euphoria. And in the midst of my reverie, a pure cool breeze brushed past my body at repeated intervals. It seemed to have had made my acquaintance at last. We enjoyed the company.
The next day we listed out the Krangsuri Falls and a trip to the Dawki river, also popularly known as the Umngot river. To reach the Krangsuri, we had to take an almost 10 minutes trek through some hand-laid gravelled steps. This again is another Shangri – La that Jowai proudly owns. The Umngot river lies in the border zone between Meghalaya and Bangladesh. And as we all might have seen in social media, Umngot is supposed to treat you with the sight of her crystal clear waters, though I would recommend choosing the right season to see that spectacle in perfection. Winters are a preferable choice.
When finally returning to our guest house, we were welcomed by a steady drizzle. All I knew was to come out of the comforts of my room and feel what the moment wanted me to feel. Pure enigma flooded me.
I wanted to capture the sunrise in my camera. So, I had set the alarm for four in the morning next day. As if Jowai had not already stupefied me enough with her enchantments, the next day was again another blessing. What I witnessed at dawn was simply a concoction of elements that would surpass all human bliss. The powerful sunburst, the fairytale clouds, the ghostly hills, the silhouette of it all finds a magical way to rid one clean of any doldrums that we as humans often get trapped in. The subtlety of the winds, the harmony of nature, the concord of it all is what you would expect in Jowai.
I had become a flightless bird for a while but it seems like Jowai had restored back my wings and now I’m ready to fly.