As a kid, I looked forward to my summer vacations. Ticking off dates in the calendar waiting to fly to Delhi. A 6 hour journey would take me to a small town in the foothills of the Himalayas. Here is where my grandparents stayed.
Summer vacations were spent walking on white, rounded pebbles on the banks of the pristine Yamuna. Watching it gurgle away was one of my favourite pastimes. But not as much as plucking raw mangoes and litchis hanging low in orchards.
Somewhere in these long nature walks and chasing paper boats in brooks, I fell in love with nature. Trees became friends and mountains became protectors.
As I grew up, frequent road trips with parents made me fall in love with road travel , with rural India, it’s diversity and its people. I respected differences, valued simplicity and found beauty in the ordinary. But most of all I fell in love with my country.
I wrote in a diary. Summaries of travels, random anecdotes and memories. Then in 2006, blogging happened. Those pages of a diary were now public. It was very amateurish but it gave me friends for life.
Amidst highs and lows of life, travel was a constant companion. I never traveled solo, but found my solo moments even when I traveled with someone else.
My relationship with Mountains is therapeutic. I have always asked them questions, they have always given me answers, enveloped me and freed me from urban shackles.
Soon I longed to set out and explore. “Find a guy and go” my dad said.
I told him if he let me go to Italy I will come back and get serious about marriage.
I am running away ever since:)
Travel for me was an escape earlier but now it’s the best source of learning I can ever get. It’s an exchange, between places and me. People and me. Stories and me. It’s made me open my knots, let go of my inhibitions, accept the world with open arms and most of all bettered me as a human being.
I love long road trips, love starry skies, love the mountain chill, love walking on dry leaves, love the gurgle of streams, love the feel of forests, love the winter sun, love leaving a part of me in places I visit.
The Quirky Wanderer is a door lover, a story weaver, a travel writer, a part time social media consultant, a full time doting aunt.