Experiential travel stories from India and 31 other countries!

We met, we chatted and tagged along memories!!!!

Journeys meant for holidaying are always a pleasure. The whole idea makes the laziest become energetic and the sad turn joyous.  The complete package of travel is associated with excitement, fun and frolic. From the day of conceiving the idea of travelling to deciding the date, fixing an itenary, making reservations, counting days before the D-day and finally packing, is very-very exciting.

Since I was a kid, I have loved to travel. For me, every summer and winter vacations meant a travel by train to my grandparents place. Dates would be freezed and tickets would be done way in advance making me happier before the holidays. Food to be carried for the journey had its special relevance as an extra amount was to be packed for the co-passengers whom we dint know but always cared to share with.The eight hours travel would always have good and bad memories. Train journey has a throng of people moving to their destinations, this meant you could come across a person from any part of the country.Travel always made strangers help each other and added to experiences further enriching.One meets several people and  some meetings become cherished memories.

Few of the encounters, I fondly remember.

Once it was Mr. Saxena and his family who shared seats with us as our seats were not confirmed.Not only did they make us comfortable all the way but also we became family friends later. We all still recall the train journey from Lucknow to Gorakhpur in 1995 and how Dad and Saxena uncle had talked for about 5 hours.They were nearly of same age and when they had exchanged further more about each other, they realised similarities were piling up and their common interests in reading and writing had brought them together.Mom and Aunty shared a great rapport and had more than enough to discuss. Most importantly they praised each other(quite few ladies do this). When we parted Saxena uncle gave his phone number and we had given ours. Later Dad contacted him and their passion for writing kept them connected. Next nothing could hold the two families. We were bonded forever.

Another incident happens to have occurred in the year 2005 when I took my first flight from New Delhi to Lucknow.I was travelling alone and was scared. Once I had collected my boarding pass, I dint know where to move. The lady in blue saree who was standing behind me in the queue, was quick to sense the change in color of my face.She took charge of me, guided me all the way till I was seated in the flight.On the way, I told her the airport process was new to me and it was my first journey. Gayatri, said there was nothing to panic and we discussed more. She also told me that she had been meek like me earlier but now she was an HR manager with an MNC. Her work regularly demanded travel and thus her hesitation and fear had all been overcome. She had a personality that was inspiring. A small helping hand had done wonders for me and today also if I get a chance, I help people in case of need. She had left a lesson for me.

Lastly, it is a recent one. I am often reminded of sweet,cute,lovely, attractive,innocent Shyna. I met this sixteen year masseuse in a massage parlour. Me and my husband went to Bali in Indonesia, last year in 2011. Its a perfect place to plan a lovely holiday.We didnot take any package and decided to make all arrangements on our own, thanx to Expedia. This actually turned out very interesting because it made us explore all avenues of travelling. And also we interacted with locals quite much. They were the best guides.

Bali is a complete tourist place and we came across people from all countries from the time we started breakfast in hotel cafeteria till night in the local markets.We visited some lovely beaches and the trip was one of the dreamy kinds.

                                                                                              Bali: clicked from flight

On the day before we had to leave Bali,me and my husband decided to go for spa and massage to relax and enjoy aroma therapy.We walked in one of the inviting massage parlours in the local market of Nusa Dusa. I entered my room and my hubby was directed to his.
My room smelt fruity and flowery and while I was noticing the ambience, walked in Shyna.
She was absolutely beautiful, also cute and curvy.

She asked me fascinated with my chuda(bangles)— New marriage, honeymoon
I said— yes
She said— U from India
I said — yes
She said — oh wow with a sparkle in her eyes. I will buy them too when I get married.
I smiled.

There was something in her that made me converse with her more.

I asked her— what is your age?
She said— fifteen or sixteen
I was surprised because she looked more or maybe had been packaged to look bigger.
Her eyes were innocent but none could say she was only sixteen.

I asked where is your family?
She said she had a family living in far away place and since she had been ten,had been working here.

I asked— Why you dont live with your family?
Shyna— I have to earn and be rich. No work at my hometown.

I asked— Do you know who is rich?
Shyna — She said like all people here who come for massage from different countries. They have so much money to visit far away places.I want to go to many places.

I asked-— How often you go home?
She said— I go once in two years.I have to save money before I can go. Rest I save my money in bank.

She gave me a wonderful massage as if her hands had some magic.I was relaxed thoroughly and equally touched by her story. I was taking a message with me, everyone had a story and life was all about struggle. I thanked God for keeping me close to my family and also to bless this young, beautiful girl.

We had come so far to enjoy the beauty of Bali and she born in a place so beautiful but could not enjoy beauty of life(Being with near and dear ones).  Shyna and me had been together for an hour and that is why I am reminded of the girl often. I had felt attached to her in the far away land.

This is the article I have written for Indiblogger contest  ‘Around the world with EXPEDIA.

Images- courtesy: Google Images

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