The Journey to a Hilltop

A green abyss of trees. Forests that run wild and deep. A few families live among the different shades of green, isolated from the rest, in a world of their own. Tea stalls and roadside food stalls line up on the top, calling out to hungry tourists like sirens.

Amongst the well-built, strong homes, there are a few houses that lay abandoned and dilapidated, inhabited occasionally by the wild monkeys that look on ever so eagerly and curiously at all the people in their noisy cars.

The air is a mix of smoke from the cars and trucks and the various other vehicles populating the narrow roads, and smoke from the never-ending lineup of food stalls. Somehow, even though the roads are overcrowded, the aroma of the mouth-watering local delicacies overpower the revolting odour.

The roads gradually become narrower and lesser cars are seen on the road. Cars speed up, exercising their new-found freedom. It is short-lived, however, as the roads become wide enough to accommodate more cars, bringing the now tired and somewhat angry tourists to a standstill.

A sole traffic police officer stands in the middle of the road, helplessly attempting to deflect the traffic. The congested roads clear up ever so slightly and cars move on to worse roads. They lurch forward bit by bit on underdeveloped hilly roads, which does not help in easing the queasy stomachs of the passengers.

Four lanes of cars merge into one, causing the already impatient passengers to grow more frustrated. Weary from the arduous travel, each car on the road seeks to overtake the other in an attempt to reach their weekend destination a little faster. The surroundings no longer hold any beauty; all anyone can concentrate on is the car in front of them, desperately wishing them to move forward.

Finally, after what seems like ages, the roads clear up again and as the wind hits agitated faces, smiles break out and cars rush forward once again. No longer cursing the cars around them, the nature around regains its beauty. The weary eyes of the tourists take in the green hills that are somewhat hidden amongst the fog.

As the tourists catch a glimpse of their destination on the horizon, their eyes light up with excitement, eager to begin their vacation. The scenery around is breathtaking, with clouds floating just a little out of their reach.

As the tourists sink into their comfortable beds, they can’t help but feel at peace –  their distractions, a world away. As they bring their eyes to a close on the chilly night, they can’t help but dream about living amongst the clouds.

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