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Script for Footloose (Rishikesh Trip)

Last year in May, the mood in the PED Finacle unit was to try out some
Adventure Sports. We found our destination in Rishikesh. We thought what can
be a better sport than White Water Rafting. So we formed a gang of 30-odd
people who were game for it and headed for a 2-day voyage.

Rishikesh is a small town in the northern state of Uttarakhand, located where

the Ganges River comes down from the Himalayas. It catapulted to Western
fame when the Beatles dropped by for a visit to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s ashram,
and the town is still known as the World Capital of Yoga.

We chose to travel by bus coz the bus timings suited us and we wanted a
dedicated vehicle to take us around to various prime spots. But if you are
travelling in a small group, it’s best to take the train to Haridwar and continue by
bus or a Taxi. Some of the best trains namely Shatabadi Express, AC Special
Express and Mussorie Express can serve the purpose. We had planned a lot of
fun-activities during our 5-6 hours travel and everyone could manage only a
small nap. We started our day with a picturesque rising of the 5 am sun at
Haridwar where we had our breakfast and geared up for our first water-sport
activity “Kayaking” which was supposed to start in a short-while now.

Kayaking is the use of a kayak for moving across water. It involves a lot of skill
and being amateurs, most of us were unable to control our kayaks at the first
place and fell in the river but our life-jackets and the life-guards proved to be our
life-saviours. Kayaking seemed to be an ice-breaker and now floating bodies
could be seen everywhere with no one willing to come out of water. As expected,
a photo-shoot followed.

Finally, we reached our camps at Shivpuri, 10 Kms away from Rishikesh, a hub
for many adventure sports like River Rafting, Camping and trekking. With sand
and white waters of the Ganges River on one side and the thick forest on the
other, we were convinced that this was going to be an experience of a lifetime.
After having our sumptuous lunch, we got ready for our trekking expedition.
There are a lot of soft treks in this region, this is an optional thing as some prefer
to be at the camp and relax.

If you are looking for a more sophisticated and comfortable accommodation,

then you can opt for Budget hotels starting as low as 200 rupees.

Beach Volleyball is something you would not want to miss. This is something we
wished we could have given some more time to. But there was no stopping us
now. In no time at all, we found the entire group sitting in a circular formation
with the bonfire in the centre. Then began a round of introduction’s of the
fresher’s followed by 10-minute games like Truth and dare & Antakshari.
Meanwhile, we were served some really delightful snacks. Night dawned and we
were off to our beds.
We woke up to the sound of the water of the River Ganges. No one had ever
imagined that attending to the nature’s call and taking our baths would cause
such havoc with the loos so small, having wooden pots dug deep inside and one
literally using a bottle for the cleanup process. It was really a bizarre experience.

After everyone was ready, we headed for “Rappelling” which involves Climbing
down with a rope. The group was taken to a spot where there was a cliff drop,
the setup was done by the experts and proper instructions were given before
everyone came down, one by one.

It was now time for the ultimate activity that caused shivers down our spines but
was still eagerly-awaited - “White Water Rafting”. Two seasons are considered
ideal for rafting: March-May and September-November. It’s a popular sport that
goes on for several Kilometres, and the path is interspersed with rapids, ranging
from the Level 1 to Level 5, in order of difficulty. The rapids can even make the
raft fly high in the air so one should be extremely cautious while the guide
instructs on how to position your body on the raft. Dealing with level 4/5 was an
uphill task and one of our colleagues fell into the river but he kept his composure
and finally was rescued back to the raft.

At the end of the Rafting trip, you have the option of jumping some 20 feet from
the ledge into the river. Though jumping from a cliff into freezing water may
sound crazy but this one thing which everyone can brag about back home. We
were a bunch of really brave Software Engineers and almost everyone was game
for this jump. By now, it was 5 in the evening and it was the time for a return
trip. All in all, a dangerous yet thrilling experience!!