For some it’s an abode of Brahma, for some it’s a quaint town surrounding the lake making it an oasis and yet for some it’s a place to dwell in the tranquility of nature to find themselves through religion, meditation, and other means of elevating their consciousness.
But for me it’s none of the above. The town of Pushkar brings back fond memories of my younger years when there were few responsibilities and more free time to experience life. When the burden of life only resided in books and passing the exams.
The Sunset Café overlooking the lake was my favourite place. With my friends, I would listen to banjo and sit by lake to look at the magical sunset. White reflection of the surrounding temples in the water made it sacred. Nestled in the Aravalli, the serene village gets shielded in green blanket during monsoons and paves the way for an unadulterated weekend getaway.
For those who grew up in the valley of Ajmer, Pushkar had its own importance. From taking every guest for sight-seeing to visiting places of religious importance every now and then; Pushkar is frequented by everyone. Nevertheless, the trips I enjoyed most were with my friends.
Bunking college in the spur-of-the-moment and rushing to the Pushkar Valley to view the sunset or even otherwise, was a treat in-itself.
Many would agree that Pushkar was one hide-out to meet their love without being caught.
While roaming in the by-lanes of the city and bargaining on traditional crafts was our favourite pastime; parts of the desert can be experienced during the camel safari tour and you can play in the sand dunes as well.
Me and my friends would visit this place any time of the year but the best time to come here is in winters. We would cover the town on foot and then sit on the Ghats and gorge on Malpuas & Kachoris to our heart’s content.
As we grew up, this became our go-to place for retreats and shopping. Now that I no longer stay in the city, I wonder if it’s still the same for people of Ajmer.
During childhood and even later, feeding monkeys on our way back from Pushkar, was amusing and fun activity which we all enjoyed. Tourists would stop at viewing points to click photos with their friends and family.
This is a place where Western and Indian cultures fuse together seamlessly. Where one side you can see hippy high tourists clad in Indian outfits, the other end is more than holy with Pandits chanting by the lake. And not to mention that there is a third side to it where people like us wander free-spirited feeling more influenced by west.
Place of pilgrimage, historical and cultural importance at the same time; the village has won million hearts with its architecture and hospitality. Already famous with international visitors, with numerous resorts blooming, it is on its way to become one of the most sought after destinations in Rajasthan.
However evolved the village has come to be, I’m eager to re-visit my teenage years by going there and feeling nostalgic once again.
**Special thanks to the Admin – Ajmer – Facebook Page for sharing beautiful photos of the valley.
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