Page 81: We realise that Pachmarhi has much to offer in terms of history, location, proximity of wildlife, receptive Forest Department Director and equable climate. There are virtually no private cars on the plateau, no industry and no commerce other than Indian tourism that revolves around honeymooners and devotees of the many shrines on surrounding hills. The plateau is effectively a dead end for vehicles, so it’s spared the onslaught of heavy lorries that destroy the tranquility of other potential havens in India by ploughing through them en route to commercial tasks elsewhere.
Olly’s Version: Here’s a typical Indian town for you: beggars pulling your shirt every two seconds to get a couple of coins out of you, dodging rickshaws as though they purposefully aim for you, getting covered in dirt and sweat every time you walk out the door, crowds of people everywhere you go as though the town you’re in contains all 1.2 billion of the population…..i could go on and on and on!
Pachmarhi was none of these- it had no beggars, one auto rickshaw, was a cool climate and was surrounded by quite incredible forestry land. It was a town unheard of, forgotten maybe by the hustle and bustle of India. There was only one road in and out and it required extra effort to get to so maybe the couldn’t be bothered to get to Pachmarhi and destroy it like most Indian towns have been. Destroy it might be a harsh word….contaminate maybe. Again not very complimentary but I think you get the point!
When we were first told about Pachmarhi whilst we were in Delhi I had a good feeling about it. maybe I was just desperate to settle and bring an end to all this gallivanting around in chase of something it had appeared we’d lost sight of…it certainly wasn’t in search of a ‘lodge’ so what was it? Pradeep told us about this unique village surrounded by jungle that held a variety of wildlife.
I remember him taking us to Pachmarhi. It was completely different to any other town we’d been staying in or visited. It was a different world compared to Ramnagar!
It became our home. The one place we could put a peg in the ground and say was ours. I had a room that was mine, well when Grandad wasn’t there and I wasn’t chucked out when guests came! I t was my room, mine and the family of rats!
I grew very fond of Pachmarhi. I used to enjoy drives around the plateau in the car or on the Enfield. I loved visiting the jungle. Granted I was only there for holidays- it would’ve driven me nuts living there…it was too quiet!