Hola! Welcoming Aditi, the wanderlust girl with her spell binding travel stories – an intriguing topic especially when all I can talk about now is solo travel after my 10 weeks trip to Switzerland which has now come to an end.
Over to Aditi!
I had a dream last night. I was wandering about in the Plaka district of Athens when the smell of freshly brewed coffee took me to a quaint café, away from the hustle bustle of tourists, where I sat and enjoyed a hot cuppa enjoying the cool October breeze. Greek coffee. My eyes must have been closed, taking in the moment, because I don’t know when he came up and sat in front of me. “Ellinikos”, came his grizzly voice and it was then that I saw him, this middle-aged-happy-go-lucky fellow, the owner of the café.
“Ellinikos?” I questioned. “The reason there’s a smile on your face and mine, this beauty of a cup, Greek coffee, ellinikos kafes!” he chirped. And just like that we started talking about coffee and how the Greeks make theirs, and how to use briki (the pot used for making Greek Coffee)
By the time I woke up from such a vivid dream, I was filled with a craving for coffee, obviously, but it also led me to think how travels leave an imprint on you. How a simple cup of coffee and a conversation with a local, not only helps you respect and learn abut a new culture, but also helps you find a connect. And you realize how big, yet how connected this beautiful world of ours is.
This is what I love about travelling, that the memories stay forever and weave into your dreams to create new memories. The love affair really, never ends.
Speaking of love affair, Zermatt comes to mind, the little picturesque mountain village at the foot of the world-famous Matterhorn. I think about this beauty from time to time. During our Switzerland trip, we were in this village for half a day but imagining what it would be like to stay in one of those wooden cottages and hike up the Matterhorn or go skiing during the winters, makes my heart sing.
And when you speak of Love, how can one not talk about Paris. I’ve been to the city twice and yet there is much remaining to be seen. Having coffee and croissant in the morning, walking the streets where many artists find inspiration while people watching, living in Montmartre and catching a performance at the famous Moulin Rouge and finally ending the day with a glass of wine looking up at the dazzling Eiffel Tower – Ah! Bliss!
But it was my trip to the valleys of Kashmir back in 2012 which made me fall in love with travelling. I can’t explain the feeling. The freedom of being in an unfamiliar place, where you have no known faces, no pretentions to uphold. Where making friends with the houseboat owner, Mr. Rahim and the driver, Mr. Hilal was as easy and fluid as hanging out with your childhood friends. Where discovering the goodness of nature and intricacies of architecture and history widens your horizons.
I travel to experience not just the flavours of a place but also the people. Each travel has its own stories, and in it are people of various colours. Some share their stories with you and some you watch from a distance and weave stories about.
Every time I go somewhere new, I get the opportunity to appreciate the ways of a new culture and new city. Each time I am amazed by the history, the architecture, the people, the incredible ways of nature and everything in between, and all I want to do is keep traveling.
About the Writer:
Aditi Kaushiva is a compulsive traveller, dancer, author, an eclectic writer and co-founder of The Dance Bible, an Indian based dance management and networking platform for dance lovers. She dabbles in travel writing, arts and culture, and fiction on her blog Aditi’s Pen and is working on her second book.