Battling against the Gravity and the Pouring Rain
After a good rest in Ravongla, both my body and mind feel fresh again like new. I felt energetic… out of the oven. It was a good rest in Ravongla, I finished reading 2 books and got a lot of ideas. I kept seeing the same view from my hotel room for days and days and wondered what is beyond those hills. So after a few nights, the sun started to shine again early in the morning, giving a good energy and light to the surrounding landscape… as in the universe is telling me that I should get back on the road and roll my bike beyond to the next valley. I had an early breakfast, where I requested the hotel manager to prepare my breakfast as early as 6am so that I can start rolling my bike when the morning sky is about to give birth to the sun. Once the sun started rising on the eastern horizon, I started to roll on the road.
I already understand the pattern of riding here in Sikkim. The road is never flat, Sikkim is made out of countless hills. The first 20km was all riding down, I just let the gravity pushing me forward all the way to the river in Legship. After crossing the bridge at the river, there was a welcome sign entering west part of Sikkim in Legship. Then the road started snaking uphill… high above. I had to climb up again gaining roughly 300-400m in altitude. It seems forever and the battle of fighting the gravity took me hours and hours. I took countless stop until I reach Geyzing. I wanted to take a rest and stay in Geyzing but it seems that the hotels in Geyzing are all right at the road side and its very noisy, since there are many trucks and lorries passing by, with some construction going on nearby. So I kept going, climbing further uphill and the rain started pouring in. It was only about 10 kilometers more to another small town called Pelling but the distance feels like crossing a continent since I was too tired and exhausted from the big climb. It took me almost 2 hours to cover that few kilometers uphill pulling my fully loaded bike fighting the power of gravity and the pouring rain. Once I reached Pelling, I was wet and tired… and I look like a fish.
It was a challenge to find a place to sleep in Pelling since it was swarmed with local tourists from all over India. It was crowded but I was lucky to find a small hotel at the roadside owned by a man from Kalkota who is an adventurer himself. Hes a hiker and gave me a room with a small price and also some useful tips for me to hike in Nepal since he’s a regular hiker in the Himalayas on the Nepali side. I stayed a day in Pelling with the intention to hike around the areas but too bad the rain never stopped so I just stayed a day there. The next day it was still raining but I decided to just keep riding under the rain early in the morning. The hotel owner got up early just to prepare breakfast for me. Such a nice guy, wishing me luck and kept snapping my pictures while I started pedalling out of Pelling.
From Pelling, its another some 20km of riding downhill until reaching a river again before one last climb to my last destination in Sikkim which is Yuksom. I came across many waterfalls here along the road with many cars taking tourists parked at the roadside. Once I stopped to admire those falls, the crowd who surrounded the waterfalls came and started to surround me… probably interested to know about where I came from. Some of them even started to speak Hindi with me, mistook me with a local and said that I look like local Sikkimese. I then played along with them, creating a story that I’m actually a Sikkimese from Gangtok and my name is Tshering but I moved to Malaysia since I was very young and has learned the way of the Malays. I completely forgot to speak Hindi language except I know how to say Namaste. They were shocked and they believed me!… until I told them I was kidding and they started laughing. After crossing the last river before Yuksom, the road climbed gradually and isn’t so steep and some parts are even flat so I rode faster to finally reach my last destination here in Sikkim before Yuksom.