If you’ve ever tried to bring all your family members together, you know how it can be a huge task. In a recent Bollywood movie, they took years to click a family photograph. But as we all know, things are often exaggerated there. You don’t have to wait for years or even months if you want to take your Indian joint family for an epic vacation.
On a trip to the misty (because it was June) mountains of Darjeeling, we (I along with my parents and sister) were driving on a road when a local accompanying us informed, “Ye right side wale ghar Nepal mein aate hain.” (The houses on the right side of the road come under Nepal). Much to our amusement, we went on for about 10 minutes on the border road that was common for India and Nepal, left side belonging to former while the right side to latter.
If you’ve read my last post, you must be aware how I’ve committed to spend next one year in rural India. Maybe, more! It’s easy to say drinking water isn’t a problem when you’re sitting in that apartment on 11th floor where the guy delivering 30 liter mineral water bottle earns more than double of a farmer family in rural parts of the country. But, visit this side and you’ll meet the challenge right in its face.
As I sit down to pen this post, there’s a sudden calmness around. The to-do list at the back of my mind has shut itself up for a while. The recently emptied yellow coffee mug kept on the right side of my laptop just gave me some instant energy and the weather in this part of the country couldn’t be better. All in all, coming back to the blog after one and a half month feels great!
I hate to part ways with old things. But the baggage of nostalgia can be too much to carry. Things that were once mine, may not always be! That printed cotton Salwar I wore to work. Even the cubicle had an air of comfort on those days. That hand mirror mom had slid in my bag when I was leaving home for college. “Your hostel room may not have a mirror”, she said. And it didn’t. That brown-white shell I had picked up, on my first beach walk, or the coffee beans I had collected, from a neighborhood café. Those
If locals are to believe, the total audience for Alleppey boat race is more than double of what Wankhede stadium can accommodate. The oarsmen row the boats up to a speed of 80 rows per minute. That’s even faster than your heartbeat. There will be drums beating, supporters dancing, police patrolling and first-time visitors like me trying to make a sense of this one big party, where the entire town comes together to celebrate the biggest event hosted by them. In pictures: Reaching the venue Practice sessions Viewers On duty The battle Departure It was my first trip by myself –
For the 1st few years of my life, I had a limited interaction with the outside world. Let’s just say I was a shy child! My opinions were mainly my parents’ and I am glad most of those made me what I am today. There are things your parents tell you — to follow a few practices, behave a certain way (or not), indulge in some activities. But that’s all they can do. The rest, and maybe most of it, is what you see and observe – their actions, beliefs, choice of words, including overheard conversations. Yes, we have had our own
“Just because a door appears closed it does not mean that it is locked – nor that it will not open with the right heart, call or touch” ― Rasheed Ogunlaru I know nothing about this door: If it’s locked, or open. If it’s vacant, or occupied. If they own the place, or have rented it. How many people are in there? And how many cats? What do they look like? What’s beneath their appearances? Where do they work? Why one window is half-open, and the other closed? What do those symbols mean? Intricately carved and painted. Does the motorbike, belong
While there’s a lot of information available online about this Himalayan trek, here’s some more I want to share. A few realistic tips I wish someone had told me:
Visiting Bhutan can be complicated depending on your nationality. But, as an Indian, I fall under the advantaged category (for once) and can visit this peaceful nation without any hassle. When I decided to go, a few friends had been there. Hence, they became my vital source of reliable information. If you need a Visa, there are several rules functioning around it. If not, you will have to get a permit.