If you choose to visit Munnar during the rains, a visit to Kundale Lake should be high on your to-do list. It might occur to you that monsoon may not be the best of times to visit the hill-station, but witnessing dark clouds burgeoning over the hills, silver oaks swaying in the breeze, rain sweeping across the emerald tea plantations and leaves finding their sheen back isn’t as bad an experience as the monsoon over our cities. Situated just about 25 Kms from Munnar, the Kundale Lake can be reached under an hour’s drive. The Kundale Arc Dam situated here is said to be the first arc dam in Asia and gives an amazing view of the Kundale Lake and the hills on the other side. To keep the journey interesting you also have host of options of visiting other places on the way, like the Mattupetty Dam, the Indo-Swiss Project or the Eco-point and each of them is capable of making a ‘wow’ escape out of your lips.
I reached the lake just after mid-noon and was intrigued to see the Kundale Lake. It is bounded by idyllic hills and rolling meadows on all side. I guess what added to the scene was the dark clouds which tore away from each other and joined several times, showing and hiding the blue skies, which in turn changed the colour of the lake in a mystic game of imitation.
The Kundale dam provides a vantage point to witness the lake on one side and the hills, covered with the Cherry Blossom trees, on the other. The Cherry Blossom trees bloom twice every year and needless to say is a compelling reason for visiting this place during the monsoon.
I walked over the dam to the other side and gradually left the road to step on the lush meadows. There was an irresistible urge to run to the lake, as ignoring it’s entice seemed difficult, but at the same time losing the crowd seemed to be a better idea and I decided to walk towards a secluded corner. As I set off, I began to hum a John Denver to myself, “There are lovers who walk hand in hand in the park and there are lovers who walk all alone.”
As I walked over the brow of the meadow, an enchanting view of the lake unfolded before me. It seemed that this corner had been carefully tucked beyond the meadow so as not to be discovered by everyone.
I laid down at the edge of the field enjoying the sweet breeze and the freshness of the grass. I did not know for how long but I immersed myself into my linking of the place and then it occurred to me – what if I could sell off my condo and came here and start living? Start living a life of my dreams, became the man of my dreams! A man with a brown skin roughened by years of negligence and deep crevices on his face. Living in a wooden house by the foothills of the mountains, chopping off woods by the stream and catching fish – not many, but just as much to sustain a day, living day by day, one with nature and knowing no fear! A man who is aware of the despondent equation that mankind has with nature and does not owe any allegiance with anyone or gives a damn about money or politics or civilization!
Well, I lost all notion of time until I was made to realize the same by the first drop of rain. I gathered by belongings and started to walk back. Kundale Lake turned me into a dreamer, but just like John Lennon I could say that, “I’m not the Only One!”