To me, Shillong was always an unfinished painting, which evolved in my imagination each time it was talked about. Leo, my friend was the one who added a stroke of a new colour on the canvas of imagination. When I finally got to visit the place, all I could utter was, a song of praise to a God who was so gracious to fulfill my dream.
The weather at the time (mid-May) was pleasant and the folks from there said that it was unusually cold for this time.
The Don Bosco Museum of North East Indian Culture was visual encyclopedia of information on the history, culture, occupation, language, weapons, music, etc. of the various tribes in the North East of India. constituted in seven stories, the museum contains artefacts, models, pictures, documentaries, statues, sculptures, etc. and if you are interested in knowing more about people from cultures than your own, then this is a perfect place for a fairly good introduction. Trust me, you will never feel bored there.
Shillong Peak, is a beautiful place from where you can seee the whole of the city of Shillong. Being the geographically highest point in Shillong, the Peak attracts tourists from all over the world. There are shops where you could buy local artefacts, crafts, textiles, souvenirs, etc. You can even take a picture of yours in traditional Khasi attire, which is definitely fun.
Elephant Falls is a a scenic rocky place consisting to three areas from where you can view waterfalls. You can walk down the numerous stairs to where the water collects into small lake, surrounded by rocks. You almost begin to wonder whether you were in one of the locations of the Lord of the Rings movie.
Shillong park, like lush beautiful eyebrows around the gorgeous pair of eyes that Shillong is would help you rest your weary soul. Go there just to be. Never go there in a hurry. Make sure you sit under the trees or in the grass and enjoy those moments. If you have a ‘significant other’, as one of my friend likes to put it, bring him/her along.
Wards Lake, an artifical lake surrounded by beautiful gardens was a beautiful place to be. The ambience of the place just fills you up, reaching all the way deep down to your soul. The calm waters will lead your mind away from your struggles of life. We just walked around the place and ended up lying in the grass looking at the sky. What a beautiful moment it was. My world stood still for all the time I was lying in the ground.
The beauty and the ambience of ‘Mary – Help of Christians’ Cathedral in Shillong is indescribable. It was evening when we got there and there was a service about to begin. While we were marvelling at the holy building and its ability to remind us that we all are deeply spiritual beings, the servic started with a beautiful Khasi hymn. We just sat there in awe of the Godly presence it invoked and I felt like praying and thanking God for the most beautiful experiences in life. And for life itself.
We were staying at the guest rooms of North Eastern Hill University ( NEHU) campus. Needless to say, like Shillong, it was beautiful. In the cool breeze, we took night walks and in the evenings watched movies on our laptop. I must say, that stay brought me closer in touch with the spiritual side of me. May be it was the absolute quietness around me while I stood in the room. Perhaps it was the sound of the strong winds blowing in the woods which echoed the chaotic rhythms inside my head (and heart). I felt like praying and spending time in devotion. I seemed to have become calmer and open to the world around me. During the trip, discussions with my cousins Merin and Soji, as well as my brother Tommy helped me break down my barriers and prejudices to life and look with the wider perspective at life. All in all, I was growing. I just know.