Around the World in 80 Years

It’s a fine day in June. The monsoons have arrived early bringing wafts of cool air with them. It’s the kind of weather which would cheer you up no matter what mood you are in. Unfortunately for me, I sit at my desk/work station staring at the dim screen of my laptop amidst the sounds of ringing telephones and chattering colleagues. Physically, I am very much there, crouched in my egronomical chair which is ready-made for the corporate slave, breathing the air-conditioned air and making an attempt to contribute and ‘add value’ to my fast growing and ever-changing company. But mentally, emotionally and spiritually, I am somewhere else. I am busy planning my next grand trip in my head when I can take a break from the mundane existence of corporate life and be myself again.

Should it be a short jaunt to the coffee plantations of nearby Karnataka or a backpacking trip through exotic Turkey? I open Google Maps (it is bookmarked in my browser and also in Most Visited tabs) and start researching. I start checking on flight itineraries and possible travel routes. Should I revisit heavenly Ladakh or should I instead go for our affordable and accessible Southern neighbor, Srilanka? I check how much savings I have in my account, and then I calculate the costs and fix budgets for hopefully soon-to-be trips. This happens every day. It is the story of my life.

It all started pretty early in my childhood. When I was still in school, we used to go to the beautiful hill stations of Southern India during my summer vacation to escape the scathing heat. It was pretty much a ritual for us every year. To have a father who loves travel helps a lot indeed. But the epiphany came during my MBA, it was when I set foot on foreign soil for the first time. As part of a student exchange program, I travelled to Europe to study a term in Paris in the latter half of 2008. During those three and a half months, I was out traveling for more than one and a half month. I crisscrossed the whole continent sleeping in overnight trains, staying in cheap youth hostels and surviving on Doner Kebabs for breakfast, lunch and dinner. But it was easily one of the best times I had in my life. That is when I realized that travelling was not just a hobby for me. It was a passion.

This wanderlust has taken me to many places since, made me visit many different countries and experience varied cultures. My motto in life is now ‘Around the World in 80 Years’ – travel to every nook and corner of the world in my lifetime. This blog is an attempt to reminiscence about the places I have been to, to chronicle the fantastic experiences I have had (and will be having), and also to just experience the pure pleasure of writing.

Disclaimer: I am writing this blog for myself. I may continue this blog throughout my lifetime (hopefully) or I may stop after this post, I do not know. But thanks to my sweetheart and better half, I have found the inspiration to sit down and write about my travel experiences and I hope to enjoy it along the way. After all, the joy of travelling is in the journey itself and not the destination!

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