A WEEK IN CORBETT TIGER RESERVE


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March 29th 2009
Published: March 29th 2009
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With two bitter experience of visiting Corbett - in 1998 and in 2005 - I had no particular wish or reason to visit it third time. A burnt child dreads of even hot milk ! But it was Mr. Sumantha Ghosh of Riverine Lodge, Vanghat who bombarded me with emails over two years period. I had spent two nights at that lodge in 2005 angling for Mahsheer fish with great success. Although I did not meet Mr. Ghosh then, I formed the impression from his emails that he was a sincere, caring and honest man. He promised me a wonderful week of angling Mahsheer and game watch which I found hard to resist. So, I decided to give Corbett third and last try. And to tell the truth, that seven days spent in Corbett not only wiped off all my bitterness but I promised to go back again for a longer spell next year.

On 15th. March, I said goodbye to my relatives and friends at Patna, Bihar and flew to Delhi. I was met by Rajen Bhist aka Dubbu. He was to drive me 240 Km to Ramnagar in Uttarakhand in an AC Tata Indica car. It was nice of him to come all the way despite the fact his little son was celebrating his birthday that day. Dubbo desperately wanted to buy a few bottles of beer for the party on the side with his friends. Two party for the price of one ! He got his vicious liquid and I dropped my extra suitcase at my nephew's flat in Patparganj and then drove for Corbett. In fact, I embarked on the most thrilling and hair raising adventure in India - to be driven on its road. Just after mid day, we stopped at a roadside dhaba called Shiva Dhaba for lunch of paratha and makhaani daal. By the time we arrived near Ramnagar, Dubboo was getting impatient to go home for the party and so he just pressed the accelerator a bit more. It was getting dark when we arrived at the Tiger Lodge in Garjia, where I was to spend the night. After checking in, I showered and changed, feeling fresh and ready for a bite and sips of "Red Label Johnny Walker", which I had brought with me, to share with Mr Ghosh and two English lads, working there.

Oliver and Keith has been working at the Tiger Lodge for last few months. They duly turned up with Mr. Ghosh at about 8.30 PM. There was no end to bites, thanks to the generosity of Mr. Ghosh. By 9.30, we had finished the bottle. They left well fortified. I had dinner in my room and went to bed. I was to be taken to Riverine Lodge, Vanghat for Mahsheer angling in the morning.

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