I have been itching to get back on the road is an understatement. I am dying to get back my travel life on track is not even close to my mind’s current state of affairs. Within 7 months of my digital nomad life, I have been through umpteen ups and down, made merry of my little successes (my first travel article got published in print!) and then off-course- I have broken down.
From a trail to up in the Himalayas of Bhutan to slowing down travel to scout the Living Root Bridges, the days gone by have overwhelmed me. And as I pen down this entry into my travel journal, I feel a cloud of restlessness growing onto me. My stomach is churning and my heart’s beating faster. I stare into the white blank screen skimming through images of the high Himalayan passes of Ladakh! Ladakh, is not a destination. It’s a journey, I have been wanting to make for a long time now. Over the years, Ladakh has grown infamously popular with Indian and foreign tourists so much that it has almost received the flak for being largely a spoiled child.
But for a person who’s been caught up in the rut for a long time, (for reasons off-course out of my control), the unbearable desire to kiss the mountains high and the skies blue, is stronger than the preconceived notions of the road, I am destined to take. For a long time, Ladakh has been on my mind. Every time, every year, I decided that I had to be in Ladakh, destiny played foul and I ended up in strange lands. Some times in places like Sikkim and the other time on a different continent altogether!
But then again, isn’t that what traveling is all about. The element of surprises, the anticipation, the wait, the dreams, the possibilities just as when it happens when you are in love and looking out for the first date with your beloved. And then when your love overcomes all the difficulties, all the challenges thrown towards you, the rainbows shine and your tummy is filled with butterflies. When you eventually see your beloved, the excitement, the nervousness, the jitters and perhaps the fears that all this could turn out to be a dream when you wake up.
Just like that my fears are coming to the fore. That I might wake up and the ticket that I have booked to Ladakh would just vanish from my heart. I fear that the beautiful lass I have created in my mind would turn out to be just another city girl, with no dreams but only a spirit to run a rat race. What if there is no strength, no character and no attitude at all? What if I feel overwhelmed now but underwhelmed beneath her wings?
My mind is all chatter right now. I am gathering my thoughts just as the scattered clouds all over the skies. I hope, I won’t fail in my love. After all, I must not forget that this is exactly what travel is supposed to do. Break you out of your pre-conceived notions about yourself and your world. And as such I am reminded by the black-headed bulbul that sits across me in my balcony railing – why I travel.
I travel to smell new destinations, forge new bonds with myself, make new friends over a hot cup of chai and some delicious mountain Maggi. Ladakh, you have been away so long from me….
But today, I want to promise– it is not long before we meet, not long before we meet…..
P.S.- The countdown to my trip to Ladakh has began with just 29 days to go. And if you are wondering why I am so desperate to get out- you might want to read this from my partner in crime 🙂