The adventures of Kapilash

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Childhood memories are something which I am sure all of us cherish for our entire life. I still remember vividly, all my adventures with my school friends. Here’s one such adventure story from my treasure box.

I was in the 7th grade and I was thoroughly enjoying life. There were many reasons. We got promoted from half pants to full pants in the 7th grade 😄 Well that was just the starter. Got my brand new ‘Atlas’. If you are thinking this to the geography map book, well you are wrong. ‘Atlas’ used to be one of the premium bi-cycles of the 90’s. Excitement was at its peak!

After the mid terms, we were eagerly waiting for the winter to come in. Not because the climate was very hot, but for the Annual school trip. Eagerly waiting to flaunt our newly stiched full pants and impress the “birds” 😜

One fine day at school out CT (loving Class Teacher) announced that the winter school trip is planned. This time school has planned to take is to a famous tourist spot “The Kapilash”.

Kapilash is a picturesque mountain (2229 ft from sea level), famous for its scenic beauty and the 13th century Kapilash Temple, also known as Mahadev Chandrashekhar Temple. It is located in the north eastern part of Dhenkanal town, Odisha, India. The temple has historical significance. King Narasinghdeva I of Ganga Dynasty constructed the temple for Sri Chandrasekhar in 1246 CE. The main tower of the temple is 60 feet tall.

For us “the adventurous lot”, the most interesting fact was that there are two approaches to the temple. One is by climbing 1352 steps and the other is thru Barabanki or trekking by the twisting way to the top of 2229 ft high mountain. We could hardly hide our excitement.

“Students whats up? Why are you gossiping? Have you completed the task I gave?”, demanded our CT. We calmed down, still murmuring and discussing out trip plan 😄

After a wait of 22 days, 8 hours and 21 seconds, the day has arrived. It was planned on a weekend and I could hardly sleep the previous night. My mom helped me pack my bag. I sneaked in few of the essentials our gang planned in the bag 😜 Apart from tennis balls, bandminton rackets and flying discs, I had taken care to wrap some boys stuff.

We were supposed to reach school by 7AM and I cycled to school (with my full pants on). Parked the cycle and bang! Here comes our school stud, banged his cycle into the parking area in style. The girls giggling. Not sure if there were making fun of him or, were just impressed with his rowdy style. “Hello Swarup, wait for me dude”, he called. I waited for him and then we walked towards the bus.

“Here comes Mr. Cool”, greeted my gang. I took the window seat and next to was my best buddy. “We will take the trek route and not the steps. It will be fun”, I shared my wish. All agrees at once to my proposal, as I knew all of them always looked for adventures. Influenced a lot from “Hardy boys” 😃

It was a 4 hours journey and we were rocking the bus with laughter, dumb Charade, Antakshari and so on. “Students, stop shouting and listen to me. We will reach the destination in 10 min. We will take the steps to the top. I will not tolerate any indiscipline”, CT declared. The announcement came like an atom bomb, destroying our plans to trek. But we were determined and decided to revolt.

We decided to start with rest of the bunch climbing the steps for sometime and then will change course. I took the lead and after climbing few steps I signalled. My gang of 6 mediately sneaked out of the crowd and into the trek route. It was pitch dark, due to heavy forest. And voila! There is a stream of water flowing from the top. This makes the trek slippery and even more adventurous.

We formed a 3×2 team, with team 1 leading from front and team 2 as observers ensuring safety of all. We did learn a trick or two in our scouts training. Specifically the scouts knots with ropes. They were very useful. I did bring 2 long ropes for the very purpose secretly, hiding away from my parents and teachers. I took one out and made the trekkers knot, used for climbers to hold on to each other and for safety.

Thud! Suddenly, heard a scream and saw one of our friends slipping from the top and we were dumb founded thinking “that’s the end of his life”. We were scared to hell. Even before we could react, we saw someone with a hood was shouting “come here quick help me”. It was our Mr. Stud. He was holding one hand of our slipping friend and was holding a bush with his other hand. He was fast losing grip. We couldn’t believe our eyes. Mr. Stud appeared from no where as God. We never used to accept him into our gang, thinking he is not our league. But this act change our equation for rest of our lives. I remembered, I had one more long rope in my bag. Took out the rope and we tied it tightly around a tree. We then threw it to Mr. Stud. “Hold on it my friend”, we shouted. Both of them tied the rope around their waist and we slowly pulled then up.

“Stop eating from tomorrow you fatso”, I charged my friend who had slipped from top as the rock he stepped on cod hold on to his weight. “You almost died. Do you realise?”, we yelled at him. “Why are you quite? Say something you fatso”, we said in chorus. “I am so tired after all this. Do you have something to munch? I am starving”, said fatso. “What!!! You were dying a minute ago and you have no reaction. You are hopeless”, I shouted at him.

We all decided to take a 10 min break to calm down our nerves. Even after all this, we wanted to take the challenge and trek to the top. This time we made a 2 x 3 + 1 formation and allowed Mr. Stud to lead our way. After all he has earned the spot. We now used 2 ropes with same trek knots. It was our first trek and was a memorable one. We had started enjoying our climb through dangerous rocks, deep jungles, slippery stream.

Suddenly, Mr. Stud was rock statue. We saw a king cobra challenging him face to face. We thought that it was the shortest friendship story. We will lose one good friend. “Thud! And the cobra move off very fast. It was our 8th friend, who had also sneaked in to trek. He was an ace thrower. He picked up a stone aimed at the cobra. He never misses a target and he did not even this time. Phew! It was close call. We all hugged him and Mr. Stud forgot all his style from that moment 😄.

Three hours of trek and reached the top. Our CT (class teacher) welcomed us with a stick. After all the adventure and 2 new friends, we took the punishment as blessings. As a punishment we were asked to guide the girls back to the bus on our way down in the evening. Punishment or blessing? 😜

We offered flowers in the Kapilash temple, clicked photos (one of our rich friend had a camera). We obeyed our CT and guided the girls back to bus. Made few more close friends 😄 The 3 hours return trip was more fun with more friends.

The adventure of Kapilash is a 32 year old event and I could recall every bit of it. Sweet childhood memories that I will cherish forever.

Swarup Biswas

I am an explorer. Join with me in my expedition to explore new destinations, cultures, people, food, stories, facts and much more...

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