For a long time now, I associated travelling with inconveniences. It was the hassle of planning, hassle of packing (then unpacking and doing laundry once you are back), hassle of leaving work behind (and then coming home to realise that they never missed you after all – insecurities!), hassle of visa and nonsense if it is travelling out of the country (because our passport can be problematic at times) or even the hassle of sorting out shit before leaving – clean up the rooms, make sure laundry is done, people are informed and you know the drill.
So for a long time, truth be told, I didn’t travel. I did save up here and there, but it was for material things and not necessarily travel related ish. I think the only time I have saved up proper before ever wanting to travel was when I got the car last May.
2017: The Year of Travel
But then, sometime last year, I told myself to declare 2017 as the Year of Travel. This was very much inspired by the Chinese calendar and its Year of the Rooster. I didn’t know where the money was to come from nor did I know how and where I would travel to. But I knew it had to be this year and seven months down the line, I think I’m happy looking at all the places I’ve been.
But one thing that I did tell myself before I embarked on my year of travel was to not have unrealistic expectations. I’ve travelled an equal number of times for work and for fun and not all of those times have I explored as much as I would’ve wanted to or gone to “must-see” tourist places in the city, because I either didn’t have enough money or I didn’t have enough time (or sometimes both).
The year started off in India, my second home. It was also in Kerala, which made the deal even better. I went back to Trivandrum after so long (six years I believe) and no, I didn’t see as much as I did when I travelled for a day back in 2011. Instead, as a “grown” adult traveller, I saw people. I did timelapse videos of myself having biriyani and other food (apparently that’s a thing now) and mapped out a path from Google maps, wondered out by myself and got lost. I couldn’t do as much as I wanted to in January as money was an issue and the ATMs being a bitch, but at least I ate!.
But I did eat a lot.
In February, (I just had a look at my calendar) I travelled a lot on work. I didn’t make a video out of it but here is an average-cool Instagram picture I can rant about.
March was busy finishing up on stuff before the holidays began and April was a treat. I beached around with my parents and Suranga and WE EVEN TRIED TO SURF. Trust me, ain’t no ab workout like a surf lesson!
Also there is some great pizza down in Weligama too.
This incidentally happens to be from this weekend's travel! 🍕 Yes, having pizza is a little overrated for me given that I (unfortunately) have so much of it now, but this pizza was seriously out of this world. As someone who is an okay-cook, I know the difference between food made with passion (or love) and food made for the sake of it. This belonged to the former. Shitty picture, despite @surangaf and I having waited for some decent headlights of a passing vehicle but either way, any picture would not do justice to the pizza. It's wood fried pizza made with care and best of all, they make no discrimination against locals! 🇱🇰
May was adventurous. I want to write a separate post on its own because this little miss travelled to Europe the first time. But until I do, here are some of my favourite pictures. I didn’t take any of them as I lost my phone very (in)conveniently before my flight to the Netherlands, but the folks around me took fabulous pictures to which I am grateful.
Obviously, June was financially difficult but then work had me travelling again in July. What can I say! 🙂 This time I was in Nepal and I actually used my little brain and stayed for a little while longer to see a bit of Pokhara, a side to Nepal I had not seen before. Eek. I did a video about Nepal from sometime back but this time it was quite this experience. I haven’t gotten around to uploading pictures to Instagram yet, but until then, here is a view from 5,000 feet.
Five months more to go, where will I go next?