The light enters softly through the curtains and falls on your face. You open your eyelids and let some of it in and it transforms your face into a warm, tranquil smile. You throw the comforter off your chest and sit up, stretching your arms and warping your face into a million different shapes to push out the sleep; it’s Sunday morning.
You throw the curtains open to let the sun enter into you and fill you with exuberance. The coffee maker runs while you pull your socks on, jump into your running shoes and tightly bind your feet in them. You stuff your sunglasses into your pocket along with your keys and wallet and then check the mess out one last time in the mirror. Only after pouring the coffee into a travel mug and letting the heat bounce off your hand do you realize how cold the rest of you actually is. You grab your jacket and leave.
With your now empty mug in the cup holder, you decelerate to a stop at a check post. The policeman on duty asks where you’re headed and you reply with simply “Margalla”. He allows you to pass and you keep driving, only for another minute, and then pull up in the parking lot of the 5th Trail of the Margalla Hills.
You step out of your car and take a deep breath. Looking around you see a few cars; other inspired Sunday trekkers. There are a few children at the tuck shop on the corner munching on chips, biscuits, sweets, and other treats. You enter onto the trail, hands stuffed in your pockets and sunglasses now taken off, and are greeted by a 300 year old banyan tree.
Walking on, you see a nursery with a plethora of budding saplings and listen to the sounds of a million birds and insects. You come to a stream of steady flowing water with pebbles poking through. The water tumbles and crashes lightly off the rocks and your trainers as you make your way across. Then the path splits.
Further ahead you see just a rocky path between the trees, on your right there’s another, smaller stream and a sign board. Jumping over the continuous splashes and turns, you disregard the writing on the sign board but make your way in the direction it points you. You walk a bit through the pines, enthusiastically climbing and promptly reach a slab of rocks on the side. “Pine sit-out”, a sign informs. But why sit when you’ve just started the climb?
Walking forward, keeping to the side, and slowly increasing in altitude; you walk alongside pines increasing in height with cones increasing in amount. You face bees, mosquitoes, and literal bullshit, but keep going. You trudge forward, turning back only to look at the stunning sight of the city from the high altitude of the hills.
Between thorny bushes and berry-clad trees, you finally see Ratta Hotar Valley. Running down the hill, you let gravity take full control of you and you reach. You stop yourself and look around, perhaps the journey does indeed matter more than the destination.