7 Reasons Why Maybe You’re Meant to be a Nomad


So, I’m home studying for my upcoming exams, and I can’t help getting distracted (=during my breaks!) with my AirBnB app, looking at places in different cities I want to visit. I plan imaginary trips and somehow, life seems to reply by sending all sorts of travel posts on my Facebook Feed with news of a different nomad to be reading about!

travel 2

Here are 7 Reasons Why Maybe You’re Just Meant To Be A Nomad!!

 

1. Looking for Places to Visit on Google just gives you a HIGH!

Now this one is a given!! Those posts about places you MUST visit and the “unexplored” make you daydream about finally going there. You’ve pinned so many websites on your Bucket List and you still have a knack for unearthing more. When you google a random place and start reading, you invariably jump to the Images, what you can explore, what are the “to-see” and already find yourself making plans in the future!

2. The Fear of Exploring New Places is Replaced by a Rush of Seeing New Sights for the FIRST TIME!

Travel is scary. Let’s face it, this is a daunting world. But that doesn’t scare you. You see those images and imagine what it would be like walking there and the fear is replaced by the unrestrained excitement of actually experiencing that place, or breathing that air and immediately capturing a piece for your memories. You’ve always wanted to head off alone, maybe talk to locals, capture those brilliant candid shots and just keep on saying “WOW” at every step!

3. The Allure of The Waiting World overshadows..well, just about everything!

There are 193 countries in the world, 7 continents, so many cities, towns, villages, breathtaking, stunning, gorgeous places just waiting for you. That thought itself overshadows the fact that, maybe you’re supposed to study for an exam, or get a job or… Oh well, I don’t know, my thoughts were overshadowed by Random Travel Plan#199

DSC004684. You’re a Foodie Waiting to have a Go at ALL the food you can get your hands on!

No I don’t mean you eat and eat till you burst! I mean you read about a different type of cuisine over what you eat, or what the local eatery serves and you find exotic cuisines that you want to try. What do people in Armenia eat? I’ve always wanted to try food cooked in a Tangine! And how about trying that French food you’ve always been scared to sample? Or maybe sauntering over to Laos and having wine with dried snake in it? If you’re eager, the world is a food heaven just waiting for you to come and sample it out!

5. You dream of visiting places people have not heard of!

Are places like Galapagos Islands, Nicaragua, Sicily, Mozambique and so many other places calling out to you? Have you a goal of going to 50 National Parks in your country before 50? Those places you never even knew existed till you looked them over a map? And when you tell people about your plans to visit, they just look flabbergasted because they never imagined there were places like this?

6. You’re more optimistic about finally making it to a place to do the costing

Costs are the single largest deterrent to travel across the world. But sometimes the optimism which comes from visiting a place and discovering a new culture, making new friends, making memories and being on your own, overshadows the economic costs that dent your balance. Maybe you’ve got a publisher waiting to hear your travails or you have a popular blog which you can monetise. But when you travel, a cost, in itself, is the least of your concerns!

7. You’re always up for a sudden, unplanned triptravel

Whenever someone plans a trip, you don’t need a second chance or a reminder. You’re in, with all the details worked out, or…well maybe not!! You probably are the one who initiates the idea and the place. Your group is always in flux with new people joining in and becoming a part of a large circle of friends you call “travel buddies”

 

There!! I’ve got all my excitement out here!! Also my first list and number post!! I’m sure some of these points are so not what nomads might think characterise them, but what the who!! You can have more people happy about travel in the world!!

 

My Nightly Affair


There is something really alluring about a quiet night. It gives you time to heal. It gives you space. Mostly it is silent as you ponder.

I’ve not fallen asleep immediately many a times. When I was small, there was a bright light outside my window. My mother used to say that Dracula would come and bite my neck if I didn’t sleep. And it didn’t help that I’d seen a movie where a hawk flies into a room, turns into a blood hungry monster and bites a rather beautiful looking woman.

There is something special about looking out of the window. Especially when the world sleeps. There is calm. There is quiet. The night just encompasses you into itself and you can unravel there.

Today is just one of the nights when sleep doesn’t come easy. Maybe it is exam stress, maybe a feeling of entrapment. The night doesn’t judge when I open the window. Cool air rushes in to replace the air suffocating me.

There is not a soul stirring here. I close my eyes and breathe deeply. There is a marvelous change which happens when you just breathe. Most of today we spend short charging ourself and indeed breathing, labouring through. The night makes me want to breathe easy. It makes me want to live.

I spent quite a while just breathing. Openly. Letting go of me. During the day our lives are all about ME. The nights become all about us. Such a subtle change. Yet such a vital one.

A cool wind suddenly brushes through my hair. Sometimes I can feel the wind there when I felt I was alone. I think it tries to tell me to sleep. And that there would be another.

Another night
Another gust of air
More peace for me to expand in
More love and backing that I could contract into

I really do love nights. They make me whole. They make me love.

In Your Head


Voices speak all around you. You shake your head trying to focus. It always feels like there is someone right by your ear whispering but no matter how much you try he does not go away. People smile at you and there is an awkward spasm. It never was so crowded here before.
There are people moving with you when you walk. Dressed in sombre colours. Always pushing you.. Pushing you to do something more, making you feel you’re never good enough. Their long fingers trace patterns on your back as you sit trying to read the same book you’ve been reading for the past year.
There is a restless, almost insane look about you. You move your feet restlessly waiting for something to happen. Everything that was your friend earlier now seems a foe. You want to throw those books lying everywhere, why do people read so much anyway?? That food in the cupboard, the smell nauseates you. You want to do yet your mind turns you away.
You try to pick up a pen to write, it falls, your hand shakes too much. The air seems too suffocating so you move to the balcony. Cool winds hit your face. Life moves on as you remain frozen, watching quietly. That pace irritates you. Those pills in the cupboard you werent supposed to take, have become a daily habit now. You get one more and pop it in. You close your eyes.
You look around, impatient. Wanting to do something yet not having any strength. There is a subtle change in the people around you. They come closer to you, holding their hands out, protecting you. More people wearing black pour into the room trying to get to you. You tear yourself away. The lamp on the table falls and glass shatters. You get down on your knees trying to scream but no voice comes out. Swords are slashing as the people in black come closer and closer to you. You try to crawl on the glass, hurting your wrists but it doesn’t work. They are pulling them towards you. A black door opens while you are dragged on the floor. You hold on to the lamp because the wire pulls you back. Blood soaks your sleeves and tears blind your eyes. You resist so hard. And it doesn’t work. Yet again!
You knock against the furniture, holding on to anything that will make you stay. There are more voices, telling you what to do, how to break free. But why don’t they come and help you? You feel pain and more pain as the lamp cuts through. The door approaches closer and finally you are lifted and thrown into a deep bottomless pit.
You open your eyes and find yourself in the same place you were before. Those voices, they scare people, they scare you. You wonder how long this will last, how many times before they throw you like a rag doll.
Yes, it’s a war. In Your Head.
( inspired by: Schizophrenia)

My Crystal Ball Reveals…


NEWS BULLETIN: TIMES OF UNDERWATER INDIA

“Extra Extra Read All About IT”

“BMC starts its own water-bus called FLOATUS”

Yes you heard me right. The BMC, in a most revolutionary way, has taken the BEST services to an entirely NEW Level. Come FLOATUS- the new, lightweight Water Bus service that floats on water. It is rumoured to be able to carry the weight of 200 passengers without sinking an inch.

On the other hand, scientists at the Indian Institute of Science are experimenting to device a form of fire called FIRANI which would light under water.

For more details, Turn to Page 2

__________________________________________________________________________________________

NEWS BULLETIN: The UNDERWATERGRAPH-UK

Sunstick causes a RAGE!! Mass Buyouts all over the world

Reporter:

We all knew that the Fashionable Kate Middleton left her own legacy cosmetics brand. But now her daughter and heir apparent to the crown has launched her own lipstick called Sunstick. This revitalised new brand brings in qualities of the Sun. Through cutting edge solar absorption research and through solar vehicles orbitting our galaxy, this new lipstick provides the skin some much-needed vitamins to stay young. It is claimed that even though this is a lipstick, it is edible in small quantities and provides the body some much-needed Vit-D. Since the earth was submerged 50 years ago, people have been parched for Vit-D and this lipstick has it all in for you.

We spoke to the cosmetics company, Elizh and the company claims that this research can change the world. “Staying underwater has its own perks but lets admit it, we all miss that lovely bronze tan. Sunstick is the NEXT NEW THING. We are working on SunScreen, the essential lotion our grandparents remember about!!!”

Well, All I can say is the world awaits for Elizh to work its way through and give the world what it badly needs!!

___________________________________________________________________________________________

NEWSPAPER FLASH: SYDNEY WATER-HERALDS

SHARK ATTACKS CAUSE PANIC AMONGST CRICKETERS

Reporter

The Indian Cricket Team which is visiting the famous turning underwater pitches Down Under have complained of shark attacks. There was panic in the Dressing Room as Great White’s roamed freely outside even though Cricket Australia’s Ricky Ponting assured the Indian Captain, Dr. MP. MLA. Er. CA. CS. CWA. MBA. Filmmaker. Param Vir Chakra. aka GOD Sachin Tendulkar that there was no threat inspite of the pitch running right through a shark ground.

Sachin Tendulkar, at a ripe age of 100 shows the spirit one needs int he dying game of underwater cricket. “He has been there for so long! Every title ever known to man has been given to him for his vast and rich experience. We will take his word and then face the Australians”, quoted a youngster.

This is not the first time there has been a panic among a group of people. The Great Water Hole, the worldwide phenomenon when holes appeared on the ground and the whole world was submerged, caused the Great Barrier Reef’s wildlife to spill across the country thus endangering some lives while enchanting others.

Scuba divers, now out of business are selling goggles to everyone and the BCCI has purchased 300 goggles from them to be used this series and also in future overseas matches.

The status of whether the match will go on will be known in a few days.

___________________________________________________________________________________________

The Environment-Economy debate will go on. Pages will be written and workshops wasted still people will not get the point. It is inevitable. When the smell of green notes overshadows the smell of a flower or freshly showered earth, I suppose we deserve an apocalypse.

Lets just hope that we can really “invent” some of those things i mentioned above to cope with having to live underwater.

Maybe we should read about those Great Whites. I have no intentions of being devoured by one anytime soon!!!

Cheers!!!

 

 

 

Dear Mama


Dear Mama,

I know i know its been a long time since i’ve written but these beastly schedules!!! I know you’re keeping very well. I think about you every day you know, remember those holidays at the beach when i used to build those castles and you got me the good ol’ chocolate ice from Mr Jones’s stall. I wish i’d get a break like that or that we could go to the beach together. Work’s been keeping me busy these days. I’ve been getting to learn a lot of new things. Its a little stressful but i wake up in the morning remembering your smile and that keeps me going.

I really wish you could see my apartment now. I’ve got some new stuff you’d like. I also finally got those paintings up which you’d kept in the attic all along as a memory. I thought that you were being funny keeping random bits of paper with my name and some random lines representing art, But now i see your point. These random bits remind me of you!!

Work is going good albeit a little tough. There are a lot of times when i remember those anecdotes you’d told me when i was growing up. You should see how I’ve changed from your “small cutie pie” to an “urban working woman.”

I wish i could tell you everyday about what happens, how the neighbors keep fighting or how my cooking is going by. I wish i could tell you how much i miss you when i need to go shopping. I wish i could hold your hand. There are times when i wish i could go inside the frame and hug you tight and never let you go.

There is so much i want to tell you. And so much of it i do tell you, through my letters. I miss your fragrance, that favourite perfume of yours, those pies you used to bake, those parties you dressed up for. There’s so much you’ve missed being a part of. So much i want to show.

I’m rendered helpless though. I know you had to go. I know you were in pain. I know it was for the best. But I can’t help wondering why the world’s sweetest, most understanding and accomodating mom who cooked the best food, took me to the best places for holidays and listened to my every rant and rave..had to go.

I could never even tell you how much I loved you when i held your hand that day. Words failed me as i looked at the serene smile on your face, as i saw life leave those eyes, to travel into a world of their own. I just knew that you’d left behind the world a much better place. And i loved you for that.

Waiting for a pat before i sleep

Loads of Love

Nina

(Dedicated to a mum who left behind a beautiful world, whose smile made a family smile)

The Welcome


The sudden darkness in the sky surprised her. After two months of summer sunshine, the blue sky had become an ally. She’d been occupied with work and seldom got to see the sky in element. Sometimes it surprised her with its vivid colours and always seemed to acknowledge her presence. The quiet gray was disconcerting.

She shrugged and pulled her bag closer. It looked as if she was a visitor, with her black bag and white sneakers. The crowd pushed her trying to make their way, in time to reach work. She leaned against the railing and watched the sky, curious. The more she saw it, the calmer she felt. The canvas above was in monotones of grey and white. It somehow seemed to colour the buildings around as well. Everything looked centred and in tranquil despite the obvious rush in front of a railway station.

Suddenly there was a breeze. She couldn’t help but smile. The breeze turned to droplets soon after. The first showers!!! There were screams as people rushed to protect themselves from the rain and mud. The earth rejoiced, and leaves danced.

She looked at the watch annoyed. It was time for her to go. A new day in office awaited her. Pulling her bag closer, she walked. It seemed that a hand was pulling her back. She’d always enjoyed the rains. A part of her ached to let go of all the trials and pressures and just spread her arms for a while.

Try as she might, she couldn’t ignore the feeling. Leaving her bag with a guard, she went and faced the sky. Little droplets scattered here and there welcoming her. The winds blew at her wet face sending shivers down her spine. She spread her arms out and gave the widest of smiles. She felt as large as the sky. Somehow she’d been waiting for this moment. At some deep level she felt healed. As if the raindrops and the gentle breeze were welcoming her back. From a frenzy of deadlines to a peaceful world. From being preoccupied to noticing the sky and smiling in pleasure. From holding back to spreading her arms out to give out all the love she could. Oh she could feel the sky spreading too, responding to her smile. She’d not felt this way for long.

After what seemed like an eternity, she turned and took her bag. There was a spring in her step and a wide grin on her face. What a welcome this was. What a celebration it was!

We are always in too much of a rush. Running to complete deadlines, holding the load of the world on our shoulders. We never realise there’s nature calling us, welcoming us back from that stressful part to the part where we just spread our arms, smile and rejoice with nature. This is who we are, celebration is a part of us. Look out of the window the next time, it might be your calling to rejoice, your welcome waiting!!!

Going Slow in a Fast Train: A Mumbai Perspective


Time is such a fascinating concept. We keep thinking about it all the time.If you chance to  hear a regular train traveller  their talks will fascinate. “I couldn’t catch the 6:15 today and look at how crowded the 6:20 is! No you should take the 9:35 and not the 9:48”. It sounds absurd but we’re so ruled by time and micro managing. I’ve been suspect to that too, reading the paper or a book or catching up with friends.

Well yesterday was different. In what way?? Read on.

By the time I usually leave my client in Fort its dark. And the city looks the same everyday, nothing changes is what I thought. I happened to leave early yesterday, when there was light and people slowly started winding up their work. The breeze was still blowing. I could see the golden sun make its descent in the horizon. The waters gleamed yellow.

I took out the paper to go on with my customary routine of reading the happenings in the Business world. At that moment the sun’s rays came streaming into my face. And for a moment I was lost. It seemed magical and there was this urge to just stand still and watch. And I decided on impulse to take this journey off.

Something about watching the city change from a sunny dress to a dark and sparkling robe captured my attention. And suddenly the paper didn’t look so interesting anymore. I’d not seen the sunset at Marine Drive for a long time now.

The train seemed to guess my sentiments and slowly chugged along instead of pulling me across the city in 40 minutes. I’ve always felt that trains had feelings and they could somehow sense yours. And they made you introspect.

The wind blew against my hair as I saw stations pass by, some we stopped on and some we passed. Yet it felt like every station represented something unique. From the Marine Drive façade at Marine Lines and Charni Road to offices at Bombay Central, the ruins near Parel, the churches near Elphinstone, the Chaos near Dadar and Andheri. From the beautiful victorian remains at Bandra to the beginning of the buildings in the suburbs to the cars whizzing by on the Highway. Even the mangroves and the creek looked beautiful as the lights cast their shadows on it. It was beautiful. This city was beautiful. It was chaotic, unplanned, messy but it was beautiful

We often are amazed when we see a city abroad, those wide roads and the parks and those tall buildings looking so similar. But here, it was like you had different, entirely different parts sewn together somehow functioning like a whole. I only did the western but I am sure the Central and Harbour with their numerous stations, some crossing farm lands and mountains while some on elevated platforms have their own charm.

There was also the beauty of seeing the light sky replaced by a dark blanket and see the lights come on in homes. For a city dweller it is disorienting to see no lights when you look out. Everywhere we passed, slowly lights were coming on, people were home. That sense of comfort that wherever you are you will reach home, was trememdous. And I think its something this city provides in abundance.

Through this whole journey the one thing I could draw comfort from was movement. There was movement all around me. People going home. Its one of the reasons why I love the name of my blog. The grace still amazes me that something so beautiful is the name of my blog. (=iamhomewardbound.wordpress.com). however far we go there is always that one place where we’re who we really are, without the pretenses and the masks. Its where our hearts belong –  ‘Home’

It was as if the crowded train echoed my sentiments. People all eager to go home. As I got off my station to make my way home it struck me how beautiful this journey was.  Going slow in a fast train was definitely one of the best journeys I’d made in a long time.

Cheers!!!

Are We There Yet


As I made my way into yet another crowded bus to reach office I chanced to overhear two college students discussing life, work and studies and bikes. I couldn’t help but listen to them as they discussed about joining work after their 12th and about money they’d need to repair their bikes and the road they took to get to wherever they were going. And that was enough to get me started.

I pondered about where had all our childhoods gone. Were they a part of history to be remembered when those dusty photo albums were perused? Or was what we enjoyed growing up still as much a part of us as it was then?

I realised we didn’t let ourselves stay as we are for any time at all. Always the pressure to perform, to excel and to make your mark. For a society that had become as unforgiving and uncompromising as ours, the race was always on.

A city like Mumbai can best be described as a spinning top or a hurricane that never stops.  You just get drawn to the high speed with which it moves and before you know it you’re in. While we all live in this world where few things matter, I can’t help but wonder are we there yet? When are we going to reach a point when we decide “Oh yes I’m happy”. Is it feasible to always live with a feeling that you’re dispensable?

I spent the entire day pondering on these lines. Work and the pressure to do well seemed the only thing on my mind. There was a rush to meet deadlines and my mind strayed thinking that whatever I did was never enough. What actually gave us happiness? Was it doing a good job and drawing a good paycheck or was it doing something you actually loved and being critiqued for making the choice early. In this dream-killer society was it safe enough to dream anymore when you knew that the fabric of your fantasy was going to melt away in the face of someone’s acidic critique? Did it matter to stand up for yourself or listen to people who cared for you? These thoughts troubled me.

That evening as I made my way home, I had the urge to go on the terrace and stare at the city. The sun was setting illuminating the sky in verdant red, lush blue and a pensive grey. Cool winter winds enveloped me. There I was staring at the bustling city running to meet some unknown target. Everybody ran in Mumbai, nobody walked or stopped. Thousands of lights illuminated the dark and from up there everything seemed tiny. The feeling of being at a height has always fascinated me. Somehow problems seem tinier when you fly with them in the air. You suddenly realise at some point while you fly, let yourself soar, your troubles leave you behind. Just the altitude you see a bigger picture.

It struck me that although we had enough troubles of our own, it didn’t matter if we knew all the answers. We didn’t need to know all the answers now. They say life is what happens when you’re busy making plans. Yes the world was harsh, uncompromising and deadline obsessed. All of us have our own battles to fight and our own wars to win. Someday I’m sure we’d get to where we always wanted to be. But for now as the city welcomed a night to rest from the pressures of the day, it was just enough to get home. And that’s what I did.

Are we there yet? Someday we’ll know. For now, let’s just go home.