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A Holiday in the Happy Valley with Pen and Pencil   By:

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A HOLIDAY IN THE HAPPY VALLEY WITH PEN AND PENCIL

BY

T. R. SWINBURNE

MAJOR (LATE) R.M.A.

WITH 24 COLOURED ILLUSTRATIONS

1907

[ILLUSTRATION: THE JHELUM AT SRINAGAR]

" Over the great windy waters, and over the clear crested summits, Unto the sea and the sky, and unto the perfecter earth, Come, let us go !"

I DEDICATE THIS BOOK

TO

"JANE"

PREFACE

I observe that it is customary to begin a book by an Introduction, Preface, or Foreword. In the good old days of the eighteenth century this generally took the form of a burst of grovelling adoration aimed at some most noble or otherwise highly important person. This fulsome fawning on the great was later changed into propitiation of the British public, and unknown authors revelled in excuses for publishing their earlier efforts.

But now that every one has written a book, or is about to do so, I feel that my apologies are rather due to the public for not having rushed into print before. I have really spared it because I had nothing in particular to write about, and I confess I am somewhat doubtful as to whether I am even now justified in invoking the kind offices of a publisher with a view to bringing forth this literary mouse in due form!

No admiring (if partial) relatives have hung upon my lips as I read them my journal, imploring me with tears in their eyes to waste not an instant, but give to a longing world this literary treasure. I have no illusions as regards my literary powers, and I do not imagine that I shall depose the gifted author of E├Âthen from his pride of place.

I claim, however, the merit of truth. The journal was written day by day, and the sketches were all done on the spot; and if this account bald and inadequate as I know it to be of a very happy time spent in rambling among some of the finest scenery of this lovely earth, may induce any one to betake himself to Kashmir, he will achieve something worth living for, and I shall not have spilt ink in vain.

CONTENTS

CHAPTER

I. INTRODUCTORY

II. THE VOYAGE OUT

III. KARACHI TO ABBOTABAD

IV. ABBOTABAD TO SRINAGAR

V. FIRST IMPRESSIONS OF SRINAGAR

VI. OUR FIRST CAMP

VII. BACK TO SRINAGAR

VIII. THE LOLAB

IX. SRINAGAR AGAIN

X. THE LIDAR VALLEY

XI. GANGABAL

XII. GULMARG

XIII. THE FLOOD

XIV. THE MACHIPURA

XV. DELHI AND AGRA

XVI. UDAIPUR

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

THE JHELUM AT SRINAGAR (Frontispiece)

A SOLUTION OF CONTINUITY

A SRINAGAR BYE WAY EARLY SPRING

ON THE JHELUM EARLY SPRING

THE BUND SRINAGAR EARLY SPRING

THE DAL

IN THE NISHAT BAGH

THE PIR PANJAL FROM ALSU MORNING

ON THE DAL SUNSET

NATIVE BOATS

PANDRETTAN

KOLAHOI

LIDARWAT

THE RAMPARTS OF KASHMIR

GANGABAL

HARAMOK

A TARN ABOVE TRONKOL

ON THE CIRCULAR ROAD, GULMARG

IN SRINAGAR TWILIGHT

SRINAGAR FLOODED

HARI PARBAT EVENING

NANGA PARBAT FROM KITARDAJI

MIXED BATHING (UDAIPUR)

UDAIPUR

MAP OF KASHMIR

A HOLIDAY IN THE HAPPY VALLEY

CHAPTER I

INTRODUCTION

A journey to Kashmir now in these days of cheap and rapid locomotion is in nowise serious. It takes time, I grant you, but to any one with a few months to spare and there are many in that happy position there can be few pleasanter ways of spending a summer holiday.

It would be as well to start from England not later than the middle of March, as the Red Sea and the Sind Desert begin to warm up uncomfortably in spring. Srinagar would then be reached fairly early in April, and the visitor should arrange, if possible, to remain in the country until the middle of October. We had to leave just as the gorgeous autumn colouring was beginning to blaze in the woods, and the first duck were wheeling over the Wular Lake.

The climate of Kashmir is fairly similar to that of many parts of Southern Europe. There is a good deal of snow in the valley in winter. Spring is charming, the brilliant days only varied by frequent thunderstorms which, however, are almost invariable in keeping their pyrotechnics till about five in the afternoon... Continue reading book >>




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