dsc02242 Travellers – strangers – travelling a foreign land.

Find themselves connected – brought together by tea.

Two trips of a lifetime – both for utterly unusual reasons.

Trek together through the enchanting regions of Darjeeling.

British born – Canadian born – sisters of the heart.

Eleven years raised in Darjeeling – fifty years gone by.

A journey through her childhood history – became mine.

Brought together by tea.

Both intrigued by tea – for totally different reasons.

A heart reaches back through the passing of time.

So many remembered – so many still alive.

Hugs and tears of joy – hers – now mine.

They remembered the blonde-haired, blue-eyed daughter of the planter.

Every dark-eyed child became a sibling – all children of the mountain.

Enjoying all the same things a childhood brings.

Nestled safely in the foothills of the majestic Mt. Everest.

All brought together by tea.

dsc02174From out of the pages penned by the famous planter – her journey came to life.

No longer mere words the memory couldn’t entirely recall.

Everything was real – her memories – now mine.

Brought together by tea.

Up the winding roads to the childhood home.

Chong Tong – the Himalayan Tea Garden where the Sahib brought his family.

What was – still was – almost exactly as it was.

The stories she’d been told – passages from a book – now completely real.

Time stood still as it awaited her return.

The miles of tea bushes the British planter planted,

remained – fully sustained.

Her Ayah once again held tightly her hand.

The stroll of a lifetime – we walked the ancient Himalayan land.

Ayah and child – brought back together again because of tea.

Their elation and tears – again – now mine.

One of the children of Kanchenjunga had come home.

A mystical mountain range shared by India and Nepal,

there was then – six treasures of snow.

Tamur and Teesta rivers continued to flow.

The Sahib had two daughters – Ayah with aging sight

thought me to be the other one.

When she held lightly my face in her hands – we couldn’t tell her differently.

The Darjeeling goodbyes ripped right through both of our hearts and souls.

Memories given back to the mountains for safe keeping.

Kanchenjunga only looks as if it is sleeping.

Now – years later – sisters still – brought together by tea.

United – for exactly the same heartfelt reasons.

~ Dharlene Marie Fahl ~

Images provided by author