“When one door closes, another opens. Or you can open the closed door. That’s how doors work.”
– Douglas Adams
No Rocket Science! Life isn’t much complicated either. Figure out something that gives you happiness and do more of it. That’s it. Simple!
Our generation is quite blessed in those terms. We somehow were born knowing what we wanted to do with our lives. We are not shy of following our passions and take our hobbies seriously.
Our generation is obsessed with travel. For some, travel is therapeutic. And for others, travel is living. If they don’t travel, they don’t live.
What’s my travel story?
In the November of 2014, I travelled to Goa. That’s my first long vacation of that year. And I was exhausted. Dead exhausted. I still remember the ride from airport to my hotel. I thought I would fall asleep. I was sitting in the cab and looking to my right – narrow roads like that of a village, highways as broad as the streets of my city & people engaged in daily chores. That made me happy. By the time, I reached my hotel, my eyes started to feel light. The next two days in Goa were full of cafe hopping, beer sipping, beach bathing & para sailing. I met some wonderful people who spoke like philosophers.
On that trip, I realised a few things about Travel. Travel makes me happy. Travel soothes me. And travel gives me stories to write. That’s why I love travelling.
What are your travel goals?
When you speak with travellers, they will share the most intriguing stories with you – about the tribes that eat ants, about forts and monuments that are haunted, about the dynasties that ruled for centuries but then vanished into thin air just like that. These stories often give me goosebumps.
I travel so that I can gather many such stories and tell others. I travel so that I can be a storyteller. I travel because I love it.
Long office hours and demanding timelines often don’t let me take any leave from work and I have to limit my travel to weekends. This is why I have travel goals to be realised when I get the gift of time:
1. Drive from Kashmir to Kanyakumari:
It will take a month but I would love to start driving from the mountains and pristine lakes of Ladakh & reach the silent shores of Kanyakumari via Royal Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
It will be an experience of a lifetime. I am determined to do this trip before 2020.
2. Travel to all 29 states:
So far, I have covered only 14 out of 29 states. I haven’t been to the ‘Seven Sisters’. I am yet to experience the glorious ‘Rann of Kutch’. I have heard so much about the ‘Konark Temple’ that I often wonder how it will feel to look at it with naked eyes. I long for Ladakh and I want to stand on Howrah Bridge and see what’s the fuss all about.
I am left with 15 states to cover. With a conservative calculation of 2-3 states per year, I might be able to do all 29 by 2022. Fingers crossed!
3. Host a travel show:
It might sound a bit cliche. I want this though. Travel to the known and remote places of India and talk about their cuisines, culture and heritage. It will be fun and I would enjoy it to the core.
If someone doesn’t sponsor me, I might do a show of my own. Who knows?! 😀 Timeline?! Next 10 years, may be. I know it’s quite long. If it happens earlier, well and good. And if it doesn’t, I will do it on my own before 2027 ends.
4. Write a coffee table book:
After having travelled to some of the most beautiful places on India and clicking gorgeous pictures, I have more than enough content to write a coffee table book. I just have to decide whether it will be on a state, a couple of states or something else. Thinking cap on! You will see this book before 2022, for sure.
5. Open a travel cafe:
I have always wanted to open a ‘Chai ki dukaan’ (a tea shop). People could come there, have tea, read books, chit-chat and leave. Now, I wish to take this a step ahead and open a travel cafe where people can come, share their travel stories, make their itineraries, get some travel tips, get to know fellow travellers and of course, drink tea.
For me, this is the most challenging goal of all. It demands investment and continuous energy. I keep thinking about it, but have no timeline in mind for this. People would continue to love food and would continue to travel. Bakeries, Cafes and restaurants are not going anywhere, I suppose. How about 2035, then?
You might find some of these goals absurd, don’t bother to tell me. However, if you have any ideas or tips that can help me achieve these faster, do drop an email to email@example.com or leave a comment.