29th February 2016, Monday…Day (10) Guwahati-Deepor Beel-Tezpur, 265 km
Had fabulous sleep inside the car parked outside Amritsar Punjabi Dhaba, Guwahati. During the early part of night, It felt bit scary when the shutters of the dhaba were shut and I found myself alone outside the dhaba. It was pitch dark and no other vehicle was parked other than my lalpari.
I started talking to myself and It took me awhile to come out of it and fall asleep.
Still had nice six hours sleep. When I alighted from the car in the morning, Sun was up and shining, no one else was around. Shutters of the dhaba were down, not even the sweeper had come.
Freshened up, crossed the bridge and drove on the Pandu Port Road and then to Pandu Railway Station. After a nice cup of tea, I parked the car nearby and went walking on the banks of River Brahmaputra, observing life and happenings all around.
Due to its location on the shores of Brahmaputra River, Pandu is a suburb and a major hub of river transport managed by Port Authority of India.
Mighty bridge on the river is seen behind the ship.
From Pandu Port drove to Deepor Beel Bird Sanctuary. Beel means “lake” in the local Assamese language. Located around 15 kilometers from Guwahati, it is a permanent freshwater lake and a wetland under the Ramsar Convention.
The beel is a natural habitat to many varieties of birds. 219 species of birds including more than 70 migratory species are reported in the beel area.
I saw thousands of birds of varied shapes, colors, built and size. I am not good at most of the things in life including identification of birds even then I was enjoying the amazing atmosphere created by these beautiful winged fliers. Their purposeful and sometimes not so purposeful but just joy flights were a delight.
A lone boatman fishing with the backdrop of human habitat seemed in total harmony with the surroundings.
A solitary flower looked beautiful in the overgrowth of hyacinth and grass.
The people of the area were aware of the fact that the freshwater fish is a vital protein and source of income for the people of the area and the health of the people around is directly dependent on the health of the wetland ecosystem.
There were a number of boards like this in the picture. It looked as if the place is a popular picnic spot. Since I reached the place quite early, there were not many people around but gradually as the day progressed, more and more people started coming in.
The board says it all.
A board mentioning the water birds frequently sighted at Deepor Beel was placed near the entrance gate of the wildlife sanctuary.
Ducks swimming in the overgrowth of grass in the beel, such a pretty sight.
A solitary kingfisher.
A watch tower has been erected on the bank of the beel for bird watching and security purpose. It is a nice place to watch the birds and appreciate the beauty of wetlands.
Beautiful lake, the lone fisherman, overgrowth of grass, calmly swimming ducks as seen from the watch tower.
Suddenly there was a sound, a sound of train arriving, a sound which evokes spirit of travel in all of us, its sight was pretty, it arrived and then left leaving behind a sudden lull.
Fishing boats tide to the shore.
A view of the lake from the picnic spot.
The train had passed through this beautiful landscape.
From Deepor Beel drove on a beautiful road to Garbhanga Forest and Rani.
A small town arrived, saw this board, turned left and then drove through many beautiful villages and forest to reach at a place where the road ended.
Sighting these beautiful betel nut trees was a first time for me.
and so was the papaya trees.
It was good to see tall betel nut trees bore small fruit, a nut and tiny papaya trees bore big size fruit.
Lalpari on a wooden bridge towards garbhanga forest.
This was the last shop on the road. From here onwards a kutcha road goes deep into the jungle which has many tribal villages, still pursuing primitive life.
A priest and his associate outside a roadside temple.
A church in the village.
A typical assamese village well.
Tribals coming down from a nearby settlement.
From garbhanga forest drove back to Guwahati, crossed the bridge and drove on the left bank of brahmaputra River to Tezpur.
It was already around 2pm afternoon in Guwahati and Tezpur was still 175 kilometers away. So did not stop anywhere en route or clicked any pictures.
Instead of driving into Tezpur city drove a little further and then turned left and enjoyed driving on the largest bridge over Brahmaputra, the 3015 meter long, Kolia Bhomora Bridge.
Drove back and into Tezpur and lo and behold found another lalpari with assamese number, it felt as if lalpari has found its lost sister after ages and at a far of land.
Evening in Tezpur was good. Had nice time walking through the busy markets observing local people’s way of living, the places, food and many more.
After a nice time, nice food, parked the car in front of a temple, pulled the covers, slipped into the car and went to sleep, at Tezpur, never thought I would ever be….another dream come true…………!!!
Map of the route followed for the day.