Here’s a tale from 21 Gata loops taking you to an altitude of 15, 302 ft on the Manali-Leh higway. It’s about a water-loving, beedi-smoking ghost who protects the drivers and travellers on this hairpin stretch of sandstone dunes and narrow twisty roads. As I looped through this winding stretch, the driver of our van spun this tale for the passengers. Legend has it that this man, now referred to as Khopdi was a devoted bus driver who saved the passengers from an accident by handling the bus with care, and lost his life in the course. He slipped off the valley, bruised and crying for help in the freezing weather, unfortunately getting no help from anyone. Khopdi has a reputation of being notorious and messy with drivers, yet is very kind and protective towards good people and drivers on the road. Hence the locals built a small shrine for him, with the only remnants from his death – his skull and bones, to pay reverence to his soul. Now the drivers who pass this loopy stretch, offer Beedis, bottles of water and sometimes even branded cigarettes to the spirit of the driver.  Now this place looks like a shrine adorned with Prayer Flags, Bisleri bottles, zen stones, Beedis, Marlboros and Goldflakes of the world and lots of presents for the this Samaritan of a  ghost!  #Folklores
Image Credits and Source: Clicked by Divya Prasad – Obsessive Compulsive Traveller


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