It’s Good to Reminisce
Over the next weeks, I am going to reminisce, like an old fuddy-duddy chap, about a trip I made to Haridwar and Rishikesh in March-April 2014. Damn, my hair was blacker in those days! But some people tell me that the ‘salt & pepper’ hair I sport nowadays is sexy. I don’t know, because I don’t see any young, nubile girl falling head over heels in love with me!
Anyway, that’s the way life goes sometimes.
This was one of the last trips I made with my good buddy, and I won’t reveal his name. Let’s just use his initials–AK.
We took a train to Haridwar, in the hill state of Uttarakhand. From there, we hired a taxi to Rishikesh. Even though I don’t remember the name of the hotel we stayed at, a few things that stand out in my memory. One, they served excellent food. In fact, they served the best food in the town. Second, we got eggs for breakfast, unusual in this vegetarian town. Last a, a gorgeous woman also stayed at the hotel. It was sad we didn’t get to say hello to her.
It’s fun to reminisce once in a while.
Walking Down to The River
On this occasion, we drove up to a temple village called Kankhal to visit the Shiva temple. I will write about this later. On the way back, we stopped at the bridge to head back to our side of Rishikesh. Then, since both AK and I love our chai at roadside restaurants, we stopped at the corner of the road.
Since I am more curious than AK, I walked down the rough patch of land alongside the restaurant, down some slippery slopes to the banks of the Ganges.
This is the point, or zone, where the Ganges River meets the plains, and it flows fast. The water is beautiful, as Mother Nature intended. The water flows fast, and the riverbed is rocky, so it is not a good idea to slide into the water like some sort of modern-day Superman!
There is no beach, so I lay down on the rocks, and hooked the toes of my shoes into the nooks in some rocks. Then, I decided (despite my extreme atheism) that God must exist and that He/She/It will not let me slide headfirst into the water.
It’s good to reminisce about the past, but every time I do, the nature of my thoughts change. These days, for instance, I often think about climate change, the environment, global warming, learning and social justice.
While we all change and hopefully mature, sometimes, I am not sure.
I can’t in all honesty claim to have matured. But I have changed and seem to come to peace with my future direction. However, the past and memories of our earlier ‘status’ haunts us more than we like to admit.
When I photographed this image, it was close to mid-day, not considered the best time of the day to create photographs. Still, I liked the light: I felt both the light and the water to be pristine. From this point, people pollute the river with increasing enthusiasm and, by the time the water reaches the water, it does not keep much of the original energy and purity.
Age brings some additional benefits, and as I look back on my old images, I edit them differently compared to the past. I use dodge and burn tools often, and I find these easier to use than some of the more esoteric tricks in Photoshop.
When I edited these images, I wanted to create a more vibrant image than I had created in the past.
Since I was lying face down, and hoping I don’t slide in, I finished the image by sharpening it in Topaz Sharpen AI. This is a fabulous tool. Even though it does not come cheap, Sharpen AI is good. For those interested, click my affiliate link, and use my coupon code–RAJIVENHANCE–for an additional discount.
The sharpening model I used here was the ‘out of focus’ model, to ensure that I sharpened the rocks and water close to me.
Yes, it is good to reminisce, but it’s better if you can improve your work continually.
Some of you may desire to see a map of the place. Here goes!
I want to go up to Paonta Sahib Gurudwara in 2023. I don’t think the virus will give me permission this year.