‘Where are you from?’ I asked her after we shared a good laugh about the unpredictable rains of the Himalayan mountains.
‘Oh, I am from Massachusetts, have you heard about it?’ She replied to me while still chewing her Maggie.
I tried pronouncing that word about 10 times but my tongue would always twist differently and she would always laugh about it. The laughs led to more silly conversations and more silly laughs; the colds of the mountains and suddenly her company was making me feel warm in my heart and I wanted to know her more, maybe because I could see the same excitement in her eyes as I saw in myself.
She was eager to know me and I was too. She was 23, a college pass out who was solo traveling for a pretty long time. She was an agricultural student who loved plant life the right amount a human like us should.
‘Whats your name?’ I asked
‘I am sorry Rachel?’
‘No, it’s Reishi. A type of mushroom plant; I gave that name to myself.’
All of this happened in 10 mins when we were sitting at the oldest chai shop on the hill, it has been there since 1984. The top of the Truind hill was halfway and I was already in awe of the surprise mountains were giving me other than just rains. I went and sat next to her. There was no small talk. There were just meaningful conversations that still ring in my head like a good memory.
Our constant chattering was accompanied by the soft music of the rains that dropped in the perfect beat on the leaves around me and my plastic raincoat acted like a drum for those raindrops. Both of us listened to the music and appreciated the true forms of art. I suddenly wanted the trek to not end.
I was learning from her and she was learning from me and we were learning from the nature around us. The unpredictable nature of the mountains reinforced about how the world around us works, but ironically we were enjoying this change and not complaining about it, unlike our real lives.
‘Haha, I am Manasvi and before you ask what it means, it means the one who follows her heart’ I already knew her well.
Reishi with a wide smile looked at me and said, ‘All of us should be man-asvi’, with an English accent that made my name so sweetly funny.
The conversations, the time together ended. Both of us were someone who got attached very easily to people and the goodbye was never good. Yet alone we connected on deep levels and I became vulnerable to her in those few hours. I was surprised because being vulnerable is the toughest job I can do.
Life surely is unpredictable as the mountains kept on reinforcing to me that day and I guess Reishi was just another rain in my life that helped me cleanse myself and look inside me. Well some people are meant to stay with you for just a season and in this case, I just had the privilege of enjoying one good rain but it came and helped to stop the draught I was living in.