Earlier, women used to travel with their families only during the winter or summer vacations. A woman travelling solo was unheard of. But today more and more Indian women are keen on travelling and not necessarily with their families or friends.
I am personally more uninhibited and more trustful when in faraway lands than the city I live in. That jump into the unpredictable lake, the most interesting hour-long conversation with a stranger, the hours of plucking dead grass without the support of a human being or the prison of a smartphone. We travel to experiment, to lose our inhibitions, to learn, to discover, to find ourselves. Tell me, how can one get lost when travelling?
Take the lady - or the man (who says it is only a man's job to take the lead?) - to a locale where the senses can feel all that is beautiful and wonderful in this world. And that is when you should whisper - or shout - how you want your future together.
Proud Parsi that I am, I like visiting Udvada for quite another reason - the food! This has to be the only town where you can feast like a king on all kinds of Parsi food without having to wait for that elusive Parsi wedding invite.
The quintessential temporariness of travelling breaks my heart. But every time hope is restored by the promise of the new. So, I travel.
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There is always time for short, periodic getaways. Work is just a means to an end. Have the will to travel, and it will happen. Nothing can or should hold you back.
I don't know what was troubling her. I got up, went, and sat next to her. She seemed to be in her late 20s. I did not say anything. I did not want to intrude. I just offered her a tissue, which she graciously accepted.
No matter how much you research for your trip, you will be offered temptations prompting you to change course. A hidden fort, a beautiful lake, apple plantations, a religious festival, marriages, local fairs--the more you ask around, the more to-dos will get added to your list.
The twinkling stars and the moon above, or the dwindling campfire light are your only source of light. You can see right till the horizon in every direction and be mesmerised by the sand getting carried in the wind only to settle somewhere else, constantly changing the landscape.
Savi and Vid
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I came to spend a day at Zorba The Buddha on the suggestion of a friend. Two weeks later, I still haven't left the premises. Such is the allure of the place. It fascinates, tempts, and finally seduces till it becomes impossible to turn your back to it.
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Amongst incense, flowers, ladders, stacks of wood and bright shining sheets, I spotted a dusty frame that hung precariously on a wall, camouflaged between photo frames of Gods. A collage of people with cotton-stuffed nostrils, eyes forcefully shut and sullen faces surrounding the dead peered at me. Here, was the unglamorous side of photography--pictures of the dead.
No matter where you are traveling in India, you will need to adjust. Adjust your seat, adjust your attitude, adjust your belt (you will eat here), and adjust your senses to the overload that is everything Indian.
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The last two years alone have taken me to places, the names of which -- let alone having heard of -- I couldn't even pronounce. An early thought while struggling with my 'thinker's-block' , was to write about all the quaint, faraway, almost mythical towns, I like to say, I met.