A Bit of Everything-  Ending the Year on a High Note at the Queen of Hills

As we inched closer to the date, the feeling was back for all of us- the excitement, joy, and happiness of seeing familiar faces after a while. There were hurdles at the start that dampened our spirits and almost robbed us of this feeling, but in the end, we met.

This time, we headed to the queen of hills, Ooty, for a three-day getaway. 

An Unexpected Hurdle. But in the End a Sigh of Relief.

The travel arrangements were made, and the only thing left now was to pack our bags. But fate stepped in and the Chennai floods forced us to make some last-minute adjustments. Our train got canceled and for a brief moment, it quickly went from “ We are about to pack our bags” to “ Should we pack our bags now?”. 

It was a rush against time, but in the end, everything got sorted out and we were on our way. 

Day 1- It’s Happening. We Are En Route.

The change of scenery as we left the hustle and bustle of the city was breathtaking. It made us all aware of what nature has to offer to those willing to explore. The first place on our itinerary was the Kodanad viewpoint. 

The view was serene, with the initial path before reaching the viewpoint covered in mist. We took generous advantage of the scenery as we racked up countless pictures.

Now, it was time to conquer Doddabetta Peak, the highest mountain in the Nilgiri. The peak also offers a viewpoint to the horizon, but for us, the fog decided to ruin the party. 

As nightfall arrived, we made our way to our place of stay. It was time to celebrate our achievements, and we felicitated our WordPress Core Contributors, our weekly game winners, and the work anniversary of our colleagues. Once the next series of games starts, the competition is going to be high, as everyone has their eyes set on the prizes.

The Day’s Not Over Yet. Now for the Cherry on Top

It’s not always that we get to spend time together, so making the most of it matters. We were back into our dancing shoes, grooving to whatever the DJ played and warmed ourselves at the campfire.

Day 2- More Places and Also, Trying Our Luck

The rain set the tone for the first few hours of the day. But luckily, it didn’t spoil the plans. We headed off to the Pine Forest, which was kind of reminiscent of what we experienced at Vagamon except for two things. The monkeys and the river view.

We had to be a bit vigilant to make sure that we stayed clear of them. After spending some time, we headed to the next destination, called the 9th mile shooting spot. The place has appeared in various movies and we took a myriad of photos at this scenic location.

Next up was the Pykara waterfalls and it was a site to behold. The calmness of the place was unmatched. All of us took a moment to admire the waterfalls, giving it time to be etched into our memories.

Now, it was our time to try our luck. We headed off to Mudumalai Tiger Reserve for a forest safari hoping to spot at least one tiger. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to spot one, but we were able to witness a lot of deer, peacocks, and more monkeys.

With a bit of disappointment of not being able to spot the tiger, we headed back to our resort and called it a day.

Day 3-  A Mixed Bag of Emotions As We Bid Farewell

Well, it’s the last day. A few more hours till all of us go our separate ways. A few more hours in our hands to make some joyful moments. We headed off to the botanical garden, took a quick stroll, and off we went to the chocolate and tea factory for a quick tour.

The fog has been evading us ever since we set foot in Ooty, but the last place on our list made up for it. The winding roads that led to the top of Dolphin Nose resulted in a change of scenario in a matter of seconds. From clearly visible roads to barely being able to see at a car’s length, the fog had engulfed us.

As we came out of it and reached the viewpoint, we took even more pictures, soaked in the view before starting the downhill drive which marked us bidding adieu to this beautiful landscape.

As 2023 comes to an end, it was a year of achievements for us. For 2024 we have even bigger plans, we are motivated and of course, we will be making a whole lot of memories.