‘Twas a long holiday weekend. And after three straight days of feeling under the weather, bingeing on ice cream and a Breaking Bad marathon, we thought we should venture out and do some sightseeing outside Cantt and Gulberg where my life in Lahore has so far been limited to. You know, so that I could maybe, hopefully, find some things to appreciate about the city for a change instead of only lamenting the atrocious driving skills and terrible manners of the people here.
So we drove down Mall Road as I looked around in awe. A sunny albeit pleasant Saturday afternoon hinted at the not-so-distant winter, creating the perfect mood for admiring the relics of Lahore’s rich history. Old buildings, old bazars. They fascinate me no end. And the lush trees on either side of the roads, endlessly soothing to my starved Karachiite eyes. But with unusually little traffic on a weekend afternoon (for Lahoris tend to venture out in droves mainly at night), the drive down the Mall and adjoining areas ended too soon.
And I wanted to look around some more. I was loving the change in scenery. So the husband drove on straight down to show me the river Ravi, warning me that there was nothing to see there. But I was still a teensy bit excited about seeing one of the famous rivers of the Punjab which hadn’t crossed my mind ever since geography lessons in high school. Now almost completely dry.
Google maps told me we were very close to Sheikhupura. And so on impulse, the husband suggested we drive to Hiran Minar. Yay, deer! I hadn’t seen deer since my weekly trips to Safari Park as a kid so you know, why not?
It’s only when we got there did I realize that there are actually no deer there. Hiran Minar is a monument constructed by Emperor Jahangir in memory of his pet deer, situated in his hunting ground. It’s very scenic actually, and we managed to take a few decent pictures. If it weren’t for the fact that a quarter of Sheikhupura had descended on the park that day, it would have been possible to take some better shots. But still, the drive was worth it for sure. Perhaps again on a quiet winter day.