Karachi To Khunjrave Pass~

19th July;
Surprisingly, my morning that day didn’t begin with my husband’s berates that day, instead, it was the sounds of beautiful birds singing nearby with a wonderful smell of sweet honey nectar and the mist. The sun wasn’t out properly, yet its light was simmering from beneath the mountains right into our room. It felt like our room was in the middle of the woods with snow covered mountains in the background. I instantly started praising Allah.


My husband and the rest were sound asleep so I went out of the room found no one there as it was fajr time. Maybe everyone was praying inside their rooms. I knew Hadia would be needing her feeding cup filled with milk soon enough so I prepared it for her, went back to my room, offered Fajr prayer and started preparing for the day. I could hear the little buzzing sounds in the background that turned into whispers, the incline didn’t stop until it became loud rumblings. Mostly it was Bhaiya’s bawl outs on each and every door telling everyone to get ready for the day. As we had planned to cross the border and touch the other side of the world.

Just kidding

We had planned to visit China border that is khunjerab pass that day.

We’ll do our breakfast on our way to khunjerab pass,” I heard Bhaiya as I opened the door. Bhaiya and Api were standing by her room which was just opposite mine.

I think we should at least boil these eggs here” said Api.

Yes, if you please,” Bhaiya said.

I need some of that hot water for the kids,” I told Api who was boiling the water on a portable gas stove by the door.

Well, you can use this one I’ve been boiling this for my husband but it seems that he’s not getting up anytime soon. I’ll fill the pan again for him,” Api said and I complied with her offer happily.

Just take necessary stuff for the day. The temperature will be low at khunjerab pass so please do pack the jackets you bought,” Bhaiya was standing at the door after a while when I was dressing up shaji, my little one.

Okay.

As soon as we started our journey that day. every kid was shouting only one phrase.

Kala Bibi, I want one

And her answer to everyone was same.

I’m peeling it right now wait a minute.

It was Baji’s duty that day to distribute boiled eggs to everyone.


The sky clear at first but it started drizzling minute we touched the highway. The road was winding by the mountains. Plus, It was a landslide site too that became more dangerous while raining. The rain makes the soil of the mountain softer and the stones tend to drop from up the mountain tops and block the roads moreover they can fall over anything passing by.



O Jee Hassan bhai, please keep an eye on the mountain tops for any landslide. We’ll stop beforehand,” requested the driver.

Okay,” My husband was as always sitting by the front window so he started keeping an eye on the mountains ahead.

After a while, we crossed a small tunnel and to our left came a teal blue thing surrounded by mountains covered with snow.

Then we crossed another tunnel that revealed the true beauty within itself. As if it had appeared by magic.

The beautiful Attabad lake; covered with thick white clouds.

The calm, fresh blue water. The idyllic scene took our breath away. Unruffled by rain, it was vault still and restful. As we went out of the bus towards the edge of the bridge. No sound rang out from the shimmering emptiness of space around it. Monastery quiet, it was lined with pine trees. We decided to make our way towards the far side of the bridge.The only sounds were the bumbling of bees and the echo of rain falling.

And not to mention our wows and whoops. Everyone was shouting and shrieking.

You think WE kept quiet. No. That’s impossible.

Oh, look over there the traffic is blocked. Maybe it’s a landslide there,” pointed out Api. The block was almost two-three miles ahead by the road that turned towards our left we could see the traffic across the lake.

I think we should take a stop here until they cleared it out,” alluded Bhaiya

Yes, that’s probably a sensible thing to do,” Shahid bhai approved.

I’m going to order for tea and see if they got anything for our breakfast here,” Bhaiya crossed the road and went to the stall by the mountain. The rain started to fall hard and all of us ran towards the lovely shades by the stall. Just out of nowhere.
Right at the empty hollowness of the highway. There was a small stream running at the back of the stall. And they had constructed stairs out of stones that goes up towards the other stall that looked bigger than this one. Alongside the path up were few shades of fiberglass and wood for the tourist attractions. I went up the stairs the minute I saw them have a clear image of the lake which looked more majestic from up there.

Just out of nowhere.
Right at the empty hollowness of the highway. There was a small stream running at the back of the stall. And they had constructed stairs out of stones that goes up towards the other stall that looked bigger than this one. Alongside the path up were few shades of fiberglass and wood for the tourist attractions. I went up the stairs the minute I saw them have a clear image of the lake which looked more majestic from up there.

Come down everyone and have tea, they have these nice donuts for us too,” Bhaiya shouted out loud.

We started discussing the Lake along with the tea session.

You know guys this lake didn’t even exist before 2010,” said Bhaiya.

‘Yes, it’s the greatest sign of Allah subhana Tàlla. How He turns the di”saster into a blessing.’ apprized Apa.

“saster into a blessing.’ apprized Apa.

‘Well, how could this big a lake can appear on the map just like this. That’s almost impossible,” astounded Omama.

In 2010, a huge landslide happened that blocked the river Hunza. The Karakoram Highway got affected by it together with some severe consequences including the abandoning of several villages. Although, later on, it turned out to be a blessing in disguise. Now it’s length is 13 miles and depth is over 100,” Baji started her usual geography lessons, no offense Baji, I LOVED THEM.

Interesting thing is that this road was built just recently, a year or so. Before that, they used to cross the lake by boats. The buses and the trucks too. One boat for the passenger and the other flat deck boats they made specially to transfer the trucks and the buses to the other side of the lake,” Bhaiya added.

Oh my, isn’t it dangerous. I can’t imagine a truck on a boat,” Omaina said in astonishment.

Well, not much yet surely it looked dangerous. By the way, there are houses and farming fields of the villagers still right under this lake. Have you seen the pine tree tops there?” Bhaiya pointed out to the area of the lake where one could see the tiny green dots. The tips of the pine trees.

Maybe cars and tractors too,” theorized Omaina.

They left their homes as it is when it all happened but it did not become this big a lake suddenly. It took time. Days and Months,” Bhaiya cleared it.

Oh, Nehdia and shaji please come back into the shade,” Api was pleading the little ones to come to the shades meanwhile we were enjoying the tea and the most exclusive donuts I’ve ever had. Sweet and soft without any sugary coating over them plus with the flavor of cinnamon and cardamom.

Oh, Tanno please put some more warm clothes on shaji he’s not listening at all.

As if I don’t want. He’s not wearing this jacket I’ve been trying to put on him. it’s waterproof, will save him from the chilly water. But if only he listens,” Honestly speaking I was sick by his bug outs, whenever I tried. He just ditched me and ran away. Smiling almost laughing at me. Saying out loud with his actions.

Catch me if you can.

Here take this jacket and try yourself I’ll be glad if you won,” I told Api and handed her the Jacket and walked away. Elder sisters are always a blessing.

Apa and Obaid bhai were having another round of tea upon the shades. So, I went there and took some photographs of the happy old couple with a little angle Hashir sticking by. Mohammad came running from behind me and joined them. Making a face like, take my pic too.

The stall guy went to the blocking site. He’s saying it’ll take some time. What do you say? I think we should head back to Hunza and cover those forts there which we planned to do tomorrow,” alluded Bhaiya.

I think your right. We shouldn’t waste any more time here,” Shahid bhai agreed.

‘Yes, that’s probably a good idea’ said Riaz bhai.

Well it’s not a waste of time, this is a lovely place. I wanted to stay here the whole day,” sighed Taymia.

Yes, sure but you know we can’t. So, let’s move on the bus now. If we hurry we could cover both forts today,” Bhaiya marched ahead towards the bus.

Everyone complied with a heavy heart leaving that enchanting place made me the saddest person ever.

Little did I know that the ventures ahead of us were as exquisite as it can be. Our adventures and expeditions were not over yet. Then again whenever we leave a place so amazing.

It felt bad.
The good kind of bad. I made a stop on the bridge and closed my eyes. I wanted to capture the overwhelming scenic views through my heart.

I will never forget this place,” I said to my heart.

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