January 4, 2006

Weather Trouble In shimla!!!!

For long, it has been a common belief that at least on two days in an year Shimla witnesses snowfall. One of the two days is 25 th of December and the other is the New Year's Eve. This Year both the days have passed and though the weather in Shimla is chilly and cold to the extreme, snow has eluded Shimla.
Shimla, the Summer Capital of British India was once a famous and much-sought-after tourist destination. It is still famous and still sought after, but it has lost much of its old day charm. The Mighty deodars that once dotted all of shimla are now reduced to a few pickets here and there. In fact, a recent study claimed that most of these trees have outlived their ages. The new trees being planted the forest department are the early grow varieties that are no match for a deodar. The deodar tree takes about a 100 years to grow into a full tree.
Initially, the town was built to sustain a population of 25,000 but now it has grown into a mini-city with a population of 1,50,000. The growth, if planned, might have been in a way so as to keep Shimla beautiful but for the most part , Shimla has witnessed a haphazard growth pattern resulting in it looking more like a grabage bin than anything else.
Despite all that, Shimla still manages to preserve its old age charm. There are certain forest roads, which make you forget that cars exist ,or that there is something like a computer that can connect you to some one halfway across the world in a second. When it snows, life comes to a stand still. There are no buses running on the road, sometimes no electricity, no water in the taps (because the water freezes in the pipes), no telephone lines working. At such times your best bet is to take a thick quilt, wrap yourself in it snugly, light a candle and bring out a copy of Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights. Trust me the book will take a whole new meaning, read like that.

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