You might have seen people trading stocks to get profitable money in return. I, on the other hand, traded my nine to five job for something much closer to my heart, 'travel.'
Everyone has their own definition of travel because their journey is different, their experiences are different and most importantly their reasons are different. Some do it to escape their mundane life, some do it to discover themselves, and some do it to peel off their stress layers. I travel because I like to feel alive every day; I want my every day to be different. Travel, to me is like stepping into another dimension, a natural unexplored space where I want to spend my timeless existence.
What's the fun in booking cabs and snaking around the city to visit places? For me travel is chit- chatting with local vendors, getting to know the history of the places and stories which define the individuals who inhabitate those places. It means running after the last bus or train of the day to reach another destination. When your phone battery level goes binary and when people become your Google maps and trip advisors. When you have to travel in a general bogie of a train because your e-ticket didn't get confirmed turning, your life into a whole new adventure. That's travel for me.
What's the learning in living in a fancy hotel room? Spending a night in a backpackers' hostel, befriending new people from different countries, cooking with them in the community kitchen, sharing travel stories and experiences, that's learning. Going into the wild, discovering routes on mountain treks, when your torch cells have bid their last goodnight, pitching your tent and sleeping under the blanket of stars, that's learning and that's what travel is to me.
To travel is to not squander more money than required, it's learning to manage it and live with the bare minimum because 'no money - no travel' is a simple fact. It's discerning that a trip for which a tourist is paying 15k INR can be done in 7k INR by living simply and travelling like a local, that's what you learn when you travel.
Travel, for me, is reminiscing jovial moments when the days are bustling grim and things are not working out. Travel is about experiencing hell and heaven, coming out with some scars & tattoos, and becoming a more rational individual from the lessons you've learned along the way.
What I want to carve out from travel is to mellow out on a bed of happiness brimming with the contentment from all kinds of travel experiences, while I breathe in brand-new air and exhale worry and trouble.
This is what travel means to me - to live with no regrets, to learn new things, to meet new people, understand the struggles they go through and put my life in perspective.
Trust me, travel is the most prudent investment that you will ever make in your life. Until next time!