july 26 '08
as always not sleeping through the night, tossing and turning most of the time in the tent i was sharing with Kamila, while she blissfully falls in and out of sleep - i know this by her snoring patterns. she meanwhile has mastered how to ignore my constant movement. the next day arrives - we set out thinking wed figured out the long walk method - not quite! another tiring up and down day, except it ends at 5pm this time. wed done slightly better - im talking 'the mamas' only.
i found singing took my mind off the drudgery and the monotony - so song after song - every Urdu song i could remember, some Farsi as in 'mara beboos' and 'baroon baroon e' thrown in for good measure.
our porters joined in whole heartedly. all good singers, familiar with the Indian oldies i was singing, sharing some of their own Farsi songs as well - ancient wakhi folk music.
we got to 'arbab purin' campsite exhilarated by the whole days walk - specially getting past its gates and finally descending into a hidden valley of red rock walls and rhubarb.
Our first evening of being treated to local Wakhi song and dance in all its mountain glory by Noor Khan and his chorous with their melodious voices --- "Woozdakh Amravan", "Yemtikmai Tikmai Zem", "Dem Ishiqe Biyaban", "Rang Rang Supreg" all wonderful Wakhi folk songs of love of 'zan o zameen' ! we treated them back with the Urdu songs id written in my phone book and was carrying with me. an instant hit was noor jahans 'dil kay afsaneh'. it stayed on the lips of everyone who walked with us including the three kids who don't exactly sing Urdu songs, or had ever heard 'dil kay afsaneh'! by the end of it, this became the signature song of this trek along with another noor jahan favourite of mine ' aa kay wabasta'.
if i figure out how to insert music, ill add it here.
from here on it was a breeze, all the way to the pass and woolio - no more looooong exhausting days, just long days. my sleepless nights were getting better as well. from no sleep, to two hours, then three, increasing steadily every day. i couldn't have been happier. nargis' ankle improving day by day as well. shed sprained it in march and it had never healed. Gul was applying a simple mixture of salt and warm water every night. it worked like magic. took care of the problem almost instantly. nadir was sporting a cold - the rest were fine - by and large everyone was well and eagerly walking towards shimshal pass