We actually managed to tick quite a few items off from my bucket list, actually our bucket list :D
*Biking in Amsterdam.
*Stood spell-bound before the Shimmering Eiffel at midnight in Paris.
*Added a lock to the Love Lock Bridge in Paris.
*Strolled around in picturesque Switzerland.
*Gondola ride in Venice sprinkled with Italian music (thanks to our Gondola co-passenger!)
*Made a wish at Trevi Fountain in Rome
*Awed by the grandeur of Colosseum
*Savoured Pizzas & Gelato in the Piazzas of Italy.
Check. Check. Check. I couldn't have asked for more!
Indeed, it had its own share of flip sides & faux pas. I think it is the imperfections that actually ended up making it a cherishably (for the lack of a better word) perfect trip :D
Of course it included carrying our huge & heavy backpacks (almost killing our backs & legs; okay fine, not really but still very heavy and then we realised that all we really needed was- 2 shorts, 1 jeans & some basic coloured tees, we should've listened to dad totally :p). It entailed securing our bags from pick-pocketers, running to catch buses and navigating our way somehow by walking on and on & on till our legs became numb & we even forgot that they were even aching!
So yes, we faced obstacles, magnified due to our presence in unfamiliar lands. But we also overcame them. And reached back home safely, in one piece :D
We lost stuff. Bumped a head. Missed a bus despite having reached the bus stop 3 hours before the scheduled departure (yes, that really happened!). Faced language barriers. Nearly missed another bus (putting us in an even bigger frenzy).
The canvas of our trip turned out to be a colourful hue splashed with colours of all shades.
From the captivating Red light district in Amsterdam to the classy Lido show in Paris, dot-on-time punctual time schedules to buses that never showed up, extremely helpful people who stopped cars to let us cross the road & literally walked an extra mile to show us the right way to frustrated people who were rude (& maybe even a lil racist) misleading us with the wrong directions & even shoo'd us away.
We experienced comfort, leisure, delight, awe and also our share of tension, anxiety, frenzy & frustration. It was quite a roller coaster, to say the least, a thrilling one definitely.
We enjoyed every single moment of the trip. Soaked it in. Imbibed it. Absorbed it. Lived it. And absolutely loved it.
It truly was a monumental experience. Traversing lanes in new cities, figuring out our ways, staying in hostels, meeting other backpackers, facing obstacles and overcoming them on our own. Sweet & sour but spicy nonetheless. This is exactly how I wanted to blow up my savings and with the ones I wanted to blow it up with - my sisters, my best friends for a lifetime.
The trip did come to an end, but the experience continues to live on and enrich me and my wanderlust. Probably, a part of me is still roaming out there in the alleys of Europe and a part of Europe continues to live inside me; both trying to co-exist and merge together to form a beautiful multi-coloured hue splashing happiness in all corners of my soul. And till the time they come together, it is the memories that live on and add a hint of sparkle and glee to my eyes :DReady. Set. Go!