The vast amount of experience I have gained in my travels , I couldn’t have possibly found it in any guide books or internet. Travel is an activity that prepares my mind for something new and unexpected. Learning from such travel adventures can be a life changing experience. At first, it might be difficult to adjust to a completely new culture or food habits. You may not get your comfort food, speak your native language or all the luxury you are used to. But that’s where the fun begins. You start exploring, try out new stuffs and make new friends from other countries. You get an enriching experience of discovering natural and man-made structures in different parts of the world. The world traveller in you begins to adjust to their style of living and be a living example of being a Roman in Rome .
In travel, you not only discover new points of interest, but you actually discover love. A love for new places, a love for new cultures, a love for the people you meet, love for their language and basically love for the world.
I love you in English, Jet ‘aime in French , Main tumse pyar karta hun in Hindi , Naan Unnai Kadalikkiren in Tamil, Ich liebe dich in German, Te Amo in Latin, the expression of love has no limits . This is actually like a jigsaw puzzle, where you can see the full picture only if you find all the pieces. The only piece of advice I can give to my readers : Love the world, seek the missing pieces of the puzzle and complete the picture.
The world around us is very diverse and very different, more than you can ever imagine. It’s not restricted by just cities, states, countries or continents. Take India for that example, one of the most diverse countries in the world, with 29 states and 7 union territories. A five hour drive from my hometown of Chennai is Bangalore . Thought its only 200 miles that separates the two cities, you can find complete contrast in terms of language, food, culture , weather, traffic and lifestyle. While the former(Chennai) is more of a cultural & traditional city with a modern twist , Bangalore has become more of a urban , cosmopolitan city with a booming IT sector.
I’ve had some unforgettable travel experiences and met some amazing people in my previous travels that has left me both in surprise and in fascination.
Humans of the World
A night in Amsterdam
Last year, this time, I was fortunate to to visit my first European city , Amsterdam in Netherlands. A city filled with canals on almost all sides, Amsterdam was always a dream destination for me. Having reached pretty late,we couldn’t manage to have any dinner and checked into a small apartment-hotel. If it was any other place, they wouldn’t have really bothered if I had anything to eat . But the couple behind the reception desk asked if my family had anything to eat. Having replied in the negative, they immediately went inside a small kitchen and brought some fresh fruits and milk. I felt a bit overwhelmed by their kind gesture and care.
Another interesting thing that happened in Amsterdam was interacting with a kind railway official. I tried to buy some tickets through a ticketing machine. However the whole thing was in Dutch . I approached the ticket counter official. Despite a long queue, he assigned his work to a different person, came out of the counter and took me to the machine and helped me translate every line of it. This is the first time I actually saw a government official going the extra mile to help a passenger.
A guide in Singapore
While roaming around the streets of Singapore, it got pretty late and after a few turns, i lost my way in the city. With no international mobile plan, lack of maps , I was super lost in an alien city. Towards a corner I saw a lady, who seemed like returning back from work. I approached and asked for her help. She immediately guided me through some shortcuts and walked me all the way till the nearest metro station. Though it was completely an opposite direction for her, she didn’t mind one bit to guide me through. I felt amazed and awestruck by her humanity and kindness to help a stranger, so late in the night.
Meeting the AirAsia CEO
One of the other fortunate moments in my travel blogging career, was getting to meet the amazing and CEO of AirAsia, Mr.Tony Fernandes in Malaysia. A brief conversation with this down to earth person, helped me to learn so many things about the airline industry, flying routes among other things. The fun quotient and his passion for ideas truly motivated me to achieve a lot more.
The Funny Chinese Guy
I met an interesting and a fun guy from China during a boat cruise in Phuket, Thailand. As I took out my selfie stick (Quite a rage when it initially came out) , he asked me about it and asked where do I get it. I handed it to him and showed that it was “Made in China”. He laughed out aloud as I just showed him something from his own country without him knowing. We had a great conversation about the similarity of India and Chinese cultures and made a nice friend from a different country.
The Indian Blogger Family
I travelled all the way to Mumbai to attend the Indiblogger BNLF event . I met so many bloggers from all over the country, learnt about their blogs, shared knowledge and made some wonderful friends too.
Interesting Travel Experiences
It never gets dark in Summer in Europe
The time I first stepped outside the Paris Airport, I found the sun gleaming in my eyes, despite an outside temperature of 7 °C. Since it was the first time in the city, I thought of heading out , assuming it’s still late afternoon only. Only then I glanced at the clock hanging above to realize its 8.30PM in the night. Coming from a city where it gets pretty dark by 6PM itself, this came as a huge surprise to me. Check out the picture below, which I shot around 8PM.
A Man-Made City of Dubai
Dubai , is one of those few cities in the world that was completely man-made. Hence, I was quite skeptical before my visit here. However, I was quite blown away by the modern city, surrounded by towering skyscrapers almost in every nook and corner. Standing on top of the Burj Khalifa ,the world’s tallest tower, is something I would rate as the best travel moment in my life. Looking over the city at night, from the 165th floor of Burj Khalifa is something I’d recommend any traveller to Dubai to do.
Top of Europe, Jungfraujoch
I never imagined that I could ever do this in my lifetime, but I finally managed to visit yet another bucket list country of Switzerland. The trip included going to Jungfraujoch, a part of the Alps mountain range. A train service that was built more than 100 years ago , took us to the top of the mountain range . A journey that involved going through naturally formed caves, ice formations and spectacular landscapes. With an outside temperature of -7, standing at the top of Europe , gave me an exhilarating experience and something I’d want to do again in my life.
You have one life. Go ahead, start exploring , Say Yes To The World, meet new people, experience openness and witness the beauty of the world.
Meanwhile I’m totally digging the new #SayYesToTheWorld campaign of Lufthansa. Check it out here.