Earlier this February on a cold lazy morning in Garhyan I peeped out of my flat window.Seeing white I rubbed my eyes but the image held true.Overnight Garhyan had been covered with a blanket of snow.
Garhyan is a small hill town in the Western mountains of Libya just an hour’s drive south of Tripoli.While I am a newcomer to this place , having come here last month, locals told me that this was the first snowfall in 7-8 years.There had been a lot of news on the television about unusually heavy snowfall bringing life to a standstill in Europe.So the snow had now decided to make a short trip across the Mediterranean into North Africa.
Although I had experienced snowfall once earlier in Shimla ,nonetheless I was excited.Coming from tropical Goa ,where you don’t really have winters it was something to be savored .I logged into Skype and showed my little son back in India a view of the snow.He immediately demanded that I bring some back with me.Later all ensconced in warm clothing I went out for a walk in the snow. I hooked up with friends and we had a pleasant hour driving around the hills and vales of Garhyan .Schools had already declared a holiday so lots of kids with their parents in tow playing on the white hill slopes.Snowmen and snow fights.Already Gaddafi jokes were doing the rounds.According to one he had forbidden snow here all these years and now that he is out it was snowing!
Garhyan offers spectacular views of the Western mountain (Jebel Nafusa) region on any given day .On that February morning the white vistas would have given far off Switzerland a run for its money.