It was on the 22nd of September in 2016 when I first planned to visit Harishankar. Harishankar is situated on the slopes of the beautiful Gandhamardhan Hills, of Odisha. It is popular spot for picnics for people all over the state and people come here to visit from different states too. The main attraction here is the Harishankar Temple and the ancient Buddhist ruins, which are considered to be remnants of the ancient Parimalgiri University. I started my journey with two of my friends in my car from Balangir, Odisha. On the way we found many tourists going to Harishankar which made us really happy. After going some 40 kilometers we stopped to have some roadside tea. The tea stall owner said us to reach Harishankar early and enjoy the bath at its waterfall which was very famous. We thanked him and got back to our trip again when suddenly heavy rain started. My friends asked me to stop the car and wait for sometime but I insisted on continuing because it was getting dark due to heavy clouds even at noon. Finally they agreed to my idea and we kept the vehicle moving and then finally we reached our destination at 3.00 PM. The first thing we did was to take a good bath in the famous Harishankar waterfalls after which we ran for the famous Temple because without a prayer to the deity there, our journey would’ve been a waste of time. Once we were done with the prayers we went to have the prasad or the holy food which was tasting like it was prepared by God himself. After enjoying the meals we again went to the waterfalls to have a bath and this time we bathed for a little longer. Then finally we went to the home of one of our friend who was living in Harishankar and whom we met some years ago in Bhubaneshwar during our B.Tech days. We stayed there with him for some time, enjoyed good food and finally started our journey back at 9.00 PM. The return journey was good but at a remote stretch in the way a lady with a very weird look asked us for lift to which my friends disagreed out of fear. We overtook her. Then I said lets see, maybe she is in some trouble. When we went back a little to find her she was not there. We were very afraid after this and without thinking much about the incident we kept moving on and finally we reached Balangir and heaved a sigh of relief. Once at home we took our meal and went to bed but I was not able to sleep the whole night due to that one last incident. However I must say that the trip was an overall success due to the adrenaline rush we experienced throughout the way.
The names of my friends who accompanied me are Vishal Chakraborty and Sriram Bagarty and my name is Santosh Bhubaneswar Pattnaik.