As I write my 50th post for this blog it’s been just over 6 months since that day in early January when I left for Gujarat on the first leg of my ride across India. And since then I have ridden 8000 kms with my Beauty in Red across five states of the country, was away from home for 115 days, staying in hotels, guest houses, home stays and sometimes even shared tents with 10 other people. And the adventures, experiences and memories, I have had my share of those as well which I will be cherishing for the rest of my life. Some of the highlights would be
But not necessarily in that order.
I returned home to Bombay a month or so back and have been spending time with family, catching up with friends, reading books, watching TV and relaxing in general. But that’s not all, I have also been wondering about my future ahead and think now is the time to take a short break from constant travelling and get serious. Now wait a minute, that does not mean I have given up on my road trip or getting back to a job or any other thing like that. It just means that now I have started thinking on ‘What am I going to do ahead?’
And this is not a thought that has come up all of a sudden. Back in January when I left, I thought that monsoon would be the right time to get back home. With most of the country under the mercy of rain gods, the best thing for me has always been to be at a place where I can sit with a nice book and a cup of coffee. And no better place for that than home. Also now that I home I did some soul searching to see if I really enjoyed the time I spent travelling and I want to continue further. The answer to both the answers is a big YES.
So what does that mean? What next?
It just means a short break from constant travelling. May be until October this year. But that does not mean that I won’t be travelling anywhere until then. In fact, even since the month or so since I am home I have been on a 3 day road trip with friends, been to Sanjay Gandhi National Park- one of my favourite places in Mumbai 4 times( I should remember to do a post on this), and have a trek or two coming up over the coming weekend. Its just that I will be making trips of shorter duration or weekend trips. Also the best place to enjoy the rains in India is the hiking along the Western Ghats and its numerous forts and mountains and that is what I intend to do.
So what’s the next big travel plan?
Well, as always the plan is not to have a plan. But I have a bunch of things that I have already booked for and I will try to put my travels plans around the same. For instance I am going with YHAI folks (the same organization with whom I went for treks in Himalayas) for their trekking expedition in Kumbalgarh, Rajasthan and so I may do a 2-3 week Rajasthan ride after or before that. I went on a 2-3 day trip to Rajasthan a few years back for a friend’s wedding and since then I have been longing to explore the royale beauty of this state. Again another trekking and sailing expedition with YHAI is on the cards during Dec-Jan time frame. I have never explored much of Goa and that seems to be a good time to hit Goa as well. I have also been invited by a bunch of riders to tour South India with them and I am going to give it a thought as well. So yes, there are a bunch of thoughts and ideas, let’s see how far they take me.
And the blog?
Well, what about the blog? It continues as it has been going on. Yes, the posting frequency might not be as much as it was earlier. Remember I had talked earlier this year about Virender Sehwag strategy? Well, it did not work.( I should have guessed. That does not work for anybody except Sehwag.) I am far behind on the goals I set for myself. So I am still working on the same. Of course, with more dedication and smart efforts. So it may be lesser posts and not necessarily sticking to theme that I set out when I started. At the same time I am also looking outwards. I am trying to connect with other bloggers, participating in contests, learning SEO, social media and the shebang that is required to take this blog to the next level. All the stuff that I already should have been doing but with was too lazy to do while travelling day in and out. Also I have joined MatadorU’s Travel Writing Program, so excited and expecting to learn loads.
Finally, what about the future?
Well some serious thinking has been going on, on that front as well. I have realized that I truly love travelling and am enjoying blogging as well. I am sure that I do not want to go back to grind and routine cubicle life as well. Freelancing with the skills that I acquired during my corportate career is an option. Travel blogging another. Some online work, affiliate, travel writing, or creating my own travel products. The choices are too many. I need to focus and put all my efforts into that and make it successful.
Hopefully, I will figure out something or someway. Until then I am gonna be home during the best season to enjoy it.