Monday, March 11, 2013

On the treetop

I've never climbed a tree.
I have gone swinging from the roots a couple of times but that's about it.
But a couple of days ago, I went straight to the treetop.
Luckily there was a staircase.

Panoramic photo by me (with a little help from my iPhone)
I went to the Machan in Lonavla.
It was my second time there.
It's like you're living in a salad while being surrounded by broccoli.
And as weird as that sounds, it was nothing but magical.

The Machan is made up of treehouses.
Yes, actual tent-like houses above the trees.
They stand on two beams and a part of it is suspended.
So they move a bit with the wind and even though that sounds scary, it really isn't.
And makes a great bed-shaking morning alarm.

It's such a well thought out place.
Where they use wind energy and solar panels.
Where you can be one with nature.
Without being surrounded by the creepy crawlies.
They also keep a tube of Odomos. As thoughtful as that is, it isn't the best packaging for insect repellent and I say that because I have known people who have brushed their teeth with it.
But what was really thoughtful was that they went that extra mile to make make a special day even more special. We got a Sky lantern! And got to make wishes.
It was somewhat like inception - A wish within a wish.
Does that make any sense?

I love nature.
But have never been someone who enjoys camping.
And even if there are 100 people in that tent, I know the insect is only going to bite me.
We just don't get along.
Also, I don't go anywhere where there isn't a proper toilet.

So this place was perfect for me.
I could check all the boxes in my list for the things that make up a perfect weekend getaway.
Pleasant weather 
Great food (that comes close to my mother's) 
Clean rooms 
No insects 
Starry skies 
A good and modern bathroom 
Nice people 
A guided tour ✓ where a man tells you about all the trees and which ones are good and which one will make your teeth fall out (that's right, there are evil trees too)
& Complete disconnection from reality 

Photos and drawings by me.
The Machan is so cut off from the world without being far from it.
It's so peaceful that 20 minutes of sleep feels like a lifetime.
You can hear every sound.
You feel like breathing in all that clean air has improved your hearing.
But that's not it. Miracles don't happen that easily.
It's so quiet that you can finally understand the meaning of pin drop silence.
Because if you dropped a pin you'd surely hear it.
And your iPad which sounds not that loud at home on full volume suddenly makes you feel like you're at a nighclub on only half the volume.
Every room also has an iPod dock which you really have no use for.

You barely get any network. And I love that.
In this day and age where conversations are replaced with text messages, emails and Likes, I think this is something we really need.
But who am I kidding? I am a Bombay girl.
Ofcourse I had my moments of weakness where I'd try to upload a picture on instagram or stalk someone on Facebook and almost walk into a tree.
Looking for network while staring at your phone and being surrounded by trees can be tricky.

But if you can do without network or can walk through trees, this place is for you.

I had the most relaxing time there and totally recommend it to everyone.

I left the Machan drunk with happiness.
It had only been a day but it felt like I had been away from Bombay for 2 weeks (the amount of time I think it takes me to feel like a holiday has changed my life forever).

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