|View from my cottage's window|
But to be honest I also spent a few hours watching "How I Met Your Mother" (an American comedy show)... the whole 1st season! and probably if I would have had the other seasons I would have seen them all! And I also saw several movies: King's speech, 300, The Incredible Hulk, Bourne Ultimatum and Star Wars Episode V! I know, I know, not so "spiritual" but it was fun :-) and it also helps me to put things in perspective, you know... let's not take life too seriously.
The first couple of nights there was a cool guy from Kolkata staying at the guesthouse and he shared me his 140GB of movies on my hard drive... the temptation was too big :-) It is is not so easy to be discipline when you are not staying in an ashram. I also spent several hours on the internet just to update my blog. But all this happened only during the last five days... or seven :-P
And talking about movies... there is a scene at the beginning of The Incredible Hulk were Bruce Banner (the Hulk) is following a training in Brazil with a Jiu-Jitsu master. This Jiu-Jitsu master is actually a real character, Rickson Gracie, a worldwide famous Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu fighter. He is teaching Bruce how to control his breathing using the diaphragm to be able to control his emotions, like anger or fear, so he can avoid becoming "The Hulk". During this scene Gracie shows techniques known in yoga as Kapalabhati, Bhastrika and Nauli. It's pretty awesome since it is actually a real advice from a real person. That's my favorite scene in the movie. To view the scene click here.
So, what was I talking about..? Oh yeah
About the guesthouse
Jossie is a very friendly Indian guy who owns a restaurant "Jossie Restaurant" though it doesn't look like a restaurant at all. But behind and above, following the shape of a small hill lies his guesthouse that has several nice and comfortable rooms for visitors. But the highlight of his guesthouse are a couple of cozy cottages, and of course, the astonishing view. There is also a large meditation room with the picture of the kriya yoga masters Mahavatar Babaji, Lahiri Mahasaya, Sri Yukteswar, Paramahansa Yogananda and many other famous yogis.
The first three days I stayed at the cottage on top of the hill and then I moved to the smallest one. They are both really nice but I preferred the small one.... for a while. There is actually a third cottage but it is out of use. It needs a lots of maintenance and I don't see this happening in the near future.
The small cottage has the shape of an octagon (I think this is the first time in my life that I use this word) and it is about 5sq meters size. Well, that's just my estimation, who knows how accurate it is. The outside walls are made of bricks and on the inside the walls are adorned with cane wood. The floor is made of stone and on the pyramidal shaped wooden roof there are four small windows through which you can see the stars during the night, but when it hails you just cross your fingers hoping that the thing glass is not going to break. There is also a fire place but I never use it. A Russian couple that stayed before me told me that it just didn't work, all the smoke stays inside. The bathroom and shower are outside the cottage.
So yes, it is pretty nice but unfortunately it is also very comfortable for insects. Every time that I switch of the lights to go to sleep at night it seemed that the walls came back to life, everything started moving around. Luckily I had my own mosquito net to avoid any unwanted guests on my bed. At least the fireflys where nice to see in the dark. With the lights on I saw many big black hairy spiders and even an scorpion. I prefer the scorpion though. The funny thing is that the spiders are more scary when you see them, but the scorpions are more scary when you don't see them.. if you know they are somewhere around. After the first week I started using ear plugs to be able to sleep during the night, the sound of the insects was driving me crazy :-P
|Yes, that's a scorpion||And one of the many spiders|
|A tiny alien on my window! :-)|
The other cottage is not so "exotic" but it is also very nice and comfortable, though from the outside is not so attractive. The inside walls are not covered in wood but instead with a nice red brownish color and the floor is just concrete so less insects to worry about. There is a small bathroom with sink, toilet and a tap to take a nice cold bucket shower. There is a second level actually, an attic but I never use it.
O yeah, there is no hot water available but if you really need it Jossie will heat up some water on his fire stove. Overall is a comfortable place and you get everything that you need to just relax, enjoy the surroundings or do your own retreat.
To view more pictures of the guesthouse click here.
There is nothing in Kukuchina, just Jossie's place and another small tea shop at the beginning of the path that leads to Babaji's cave. You can find only very basic things like soap, a few cookies and water but if you need more things like fruits then you need to go to the Dwarahat market which is about 45 minutes by share taxi.
But if you stay at Jossie's place he will provide you with home made breakfast, lunch and dinner so nothing to worry about. And since I like to have fruits for my breakfast he will buy fruits for a week for me at the market. So it was all very convenient. The homemade food was ok, it has it good days and bad days, but after more than 20 days I really needed a change.
How to get there
This is the route that I followed from Rishikesh:
- From Rishikesh take a public bus from the main bus stop to Haridwar. (45 min)
- From Haridwar take the night train to Kathgodam which leaves every day at 00h15. There is only one train per day.
- From Kathgodam take a share taxi to Raniket (4 hours) and from Raniket another shared taxi to Dwarahat (3 hours). The share taxi from Kathgodam up to Dwarahat should be around 250 or 300 rupees.
- Once you reached Dwarahat market you'll need to take another share taxi to Kukuchina (50 minutes) for about 25 rupees. This is the last stop by car.
If you would like to stay at Jossie's guesthouse just call him to his number +91 94 11 318540
Take a look at the video and other related posts
- Video: Babaji's Cave, the Pandavkholi Dharamshala and Kukuchina.
- The Yogoda Satsanga Sakha (Kriya Yoga) Ashram, Dwarahat, India
- The Pandavkholi Dharamshala and Mandir, Dunagiri, India
- Journey to Mahavatar Babaji's cave in Kukuchina, Dunagiri, India