|Sea and Sand - Goa Travel By Train Decades Ago|
When I was a teen, travel was mostly about train journeys. Each time we embarked on a train journey, the baggage of reality was the first casualty. And of all the seductions of train travel, the most enticing was the possibility of a chance encounter with a stranger. Oftentimes I imagined meeting him in a first class compartment, discovering him just as the train emerged from a dark tunnel. Or watching the handsome stranger sleep on the adjacent berth. All because the movie Casablanca and some tacky novels had left footprints on my delusional mind.
But instead of meeting mysterious good looking strangers, my imagination was trampled by heavy boots of reality. More often than not, my travel companions were pot bellied gassy men, loquacious aunties or naughty kids who enjoyed hanging on the berth like monkeys. Most wouldn’t even allow me the privilege of a short nap.
Tell me if I am wrong, but many youngsters hold on to romantic possibilities while traveling. And unlike me, some even get to meet interesting strangers.
After holy matrimony, the entire travel matrix had changed. My tryst with travel held great excitement of meeting parents or my husband who was abroad. So travel imagination was predominantly about meeting loved ones - the explosion of emotions, the squeals of joy and the moments of embrace.
|On board a Cruise -Superstar Libra (2010)|
Today when I travel with family, comfort and relaxation are the key words. The mantra is to travel light and travel right - the shortest possible route with lightest possible luggage. While on a vacation, I aim for total relaxation. And unlike most, I am perfectly happy when I am lazing around, doing nothing. I mean, why else would I take a break?
I love the sea and the sea loves me. Nothing fascinates me more than the soporific air, laid back beaches and warm transparent sea waters. I dream of lazing around the pristine beaches and lagoons of Maldives
|Seychelles In 2006|
with family. The Maldives is a long narrow country formed by twenty six natural atolls - ring like coral formations enclosing lagoons. There are over three thousand coral reefs in and around Maldives. Due to the countless number of reefs, all you need to do is travel 30 minutes by boat to get to a different dive spot every day. Night diving is particularly exciting as it lets you experience interesting flora and fauna. No, I haven’t been there yet, but I plan to. Perhaps, this October.
Unlike the past, I plan to travel smart by striking the right balance between budget and comfort. On our previous cruise to Krabi and Penang, the tour operator booked us on a long flight via Colombo. Cooped in an endless hopping flight, I felt like a chicken in a cage. Worse, the hotel booked for us was in a red light area and not exactly what we had imagined.
After heated arguments and last minute change of hotels, I realized that it is best to book flights and hotels yourself to avoid any disappointment. With Skyscanner, it is really easy to compare and select the best options available. The free services enable you to compare several airlines and offer deals on hotels worldwide.
Right now, I have identified tentative flights to Male, but am recovering from another shock. I had my eyes on the divine Lagoon Villa with a Plunge pool at Taj Exotica, but it costs a bomb. So the dilemma is whether to save and plan a trip next year, or, go ahead and stay at the Surf
Imagine landing on a slender strip of verdant land surrounded by a transparent sea that transforms into a million shades of blue-green. There I am, at the centre stage enjoying the symphony between rumbling clouds and gurgling waves - a microscopic speck in the grand scheme of things. Suddenly it begins to rain. And the following morning, the sand appears satiated – glistening in the glorious sun. Bliss.