A strong gust of wind blew my hat away when I first got down from my car to the resort that was to be our home for the next three days. The blazing sun, notwithstanding, there was a cool refreshing breeze from the yet to flower mango and litchi trees in abundance that lined all the roads leading to here.
Serene and unpretentious were my first thoughts when I glimpsed the little lobby and entrance of this homely place. This was a pretty hurried vacation and therefore without much expectations. But sometimes this can turn out to be a good thing, as I slowly began to find out.
The tiny parking lot is actually deceiving because it doesn’t prepare one for the huge expanse of land that spreads out before the eyes as one enters the Tiger Camp. And once I was inside the complex, it was almost like being inside a mini jungle that housed many chalets; the best ones being the newly constructed ones, a bit far from the lobby area and away from any kind of din.
There are shrubs and thick tree formations and bushes throughout the entire stretch from the beginning of the chalets to the open air restaurant to the poolside, which lies in a secluded spot and further down, as you walk to the silent river meandering like a snake across the green panorama.
It’s the perfect place for writers, artists and creative people who want to go off to sleep amidst an eerie stillness and wake up to slanting rays of light, chirpy birds and the smell of home cooked food emanating from the restaurant. But this is definitely not the place for city slickers who enjoy the trappings of their concrete hotel rooms and are used to a lot of creature comforts.
It takes a bit of getting used to if you’re not very animal-friendly like me. But when you understand that the monkeys you just spotted walking on the road in front of you or the birds that are sitting near your feet as you eat or even the dog that has decided to get into the tennis room before you do, are simply there, doing their stuff and have no intention of bothering you; you learn to slowly relax.
The peace is sometimes overtaken by a gaggle of kids and families who have just arrived but they soon settle down, possibly imbibing the serenity of the place. It is otherwise just that retreat you read about…where you may spot a ghost or two as you walk down the long cobbled path to the river for a post-dinner smoke, with just a few lamps lighting up the way.
Simple and hassle free…things move slowly around here. Keep that pace in mind for yourself too and you will be reluctant to get back to city life like me.