Daylight is limited and I needed to get going. I rode to the end of Darlawn way pass East Phaileng just for the heck of it. I rode pass a funeral, the typical black flag and slow down sign placed by the YMA. Then I had to return and with some guilt had to cross the funeral again. I had just rode pass it with much care on the throttle to avoid attracting eye balls. The roar and thunder of Royal Enfield motorcycles is far from pleasant to most people, even when a funeral is not on going.
Apart from having to cross the funeral twice, it was a good thing again. Riding back towards East Phaileng, the view with Chalfilh Tlang in the background was stunning.
East Phaileng to Suangpuilawn is the longest (40 km) stretch between towns I have traveled in Mizoram apart from distance between Saiha to Zero Point. From East Phaileng the road descends to Tuivawl river valley. I saw no man, no running vehicle, just a few parked on the roadside, no farm, almost no sign of civilization except the lonely road.
At Tuivawl bridge I stopped, clicked pictures and checked for phone signal. Dusk was closing in and I really needed to keep Maruata at Suangpuilawn posted. A good guest keeps the host informed. The two of us met in Chennai. He was doing his PG and I was starting my career. He had gone back to his hometown and teaches there.
The setting sunlight high above the horizon, me on a bridge, the roaring river below. It felt creepy and lonely for city boy.
After Tuivawl, the road became wider and smoother and I started seeing signs of life (as well as wildlife, I saw a deer) again such as farms. Quite a relief.
Riding on, I saw a beautiful and pristine looking lake which I later learned is Rung dil and there’s two of them, male and female.
I could now see Suangpuilawn in the far distance and even farmers in their farm hut. They were “ram riak”- farmers camping in the farm to get more work done by way of avoiding the daily commute to farm from home.
As soon as I got phone signal, I called Maruata and informed him of my impending arrival. I rode into Suangpuilawn before sunset. Maruata was to meet me at the outskirt. Not seeing him I rode on, followed the road heading higher ground which took me to the playground and appeared to be a dead end. I turned around and took the other road and ran into Maruata. I had progressed faster than he expected which is why he didn’t make it on time. There are just one or two roads going through town. It wouldn’t have been difficult to meet up anyway.
I followed him home to be welcomed with a nice cup of tea. I did not make any pit stop for food on the way. So the tea was extra replenishing. After tea I showered and I literally showered. The typical way to bathe in Mizoram especially in rural areas is to dip a mug into a bucket of water and pour the water over your head. But Maruata took care to install a shower. Nice man!
After dinner, with two of his friends, Maruata took me out to explore the town. From the hill where there is the Government Hospital to the waiting shed at the other end of town, we roamed. We made it home by midnight. Pretty late time to return home in a thingtlang, rural village or town.
My brother in-law who eagerly lent me the motorcycle passed away a couple of months after this trip.