I was born in an affluent family in Delhi. Born with a silver spoon in my mouth, life gave me everything I could ever dream of. After graduating from one of the most renowned engineering colleges in India, I settled down with a job in an MNC in Gurgaon. Yes, always wanted to settle near home! Such a travel-phobic I was! 😉
I didn’t realize when and how, but I was madly in love with a colleague of mine. <3 <3 Everything seemed beautiful when he was around. His one smile used to make my day. We grew into real good friends but I could never gather the courage to tell him what he meant to me. Finally I decided to tell him how much I love him. ‘No fear, let’s face it’ is what I thought! Little did I have any idea what the future held for me.
Finally I told him how much I love him. He initially laughed and assumed it to be a prank of mine but when he realized I was serious, he got furious. “Are you mad, have you ever thought what are you saying? Being A MALE YOURSELF, HOW CAN YOU THINK OF ANOTHER MALE? You need to see a psychiatrist!”
I was broken. Love happened to me naturally. My feelings were pure and I was in pain. I came home drunk that night and almost broke down in front of my mother. I told her everything and found her to be more shocked. She was inconsolable for because of me all her dreams were shattered. She was inconsolable. All this while when I needed the support of my family the most, it was me who was pacifying them! Such was my destiny! 🙁 🙁
I never went to my office again. Because of the same discussion at my house over and over again, I could never come out of the guilt. I was slowly getting into depression when my mother asked me to visit my aunt in the US. I simply refused. As it is, I was never a travel lover anyway! She kept forcing me with a hope that the change of place might make me behave normal because for my parents, I was ‘abnormal.” – that’s the term they often used to refer my state of mind then!
Well, finally it was May 2015 that I reached the US. My aunt already had all the information about what happened but she never discussed that in front of me. She had that maturity and perhaps some sort of acceptance too!
Even in the US, all day I used to remain at home. It was then she asked me to visit a few places, explore the world and enjoy myself. I resisted but she kept insisting. She used to share her enriching experiences with me and I couldn’t even know when she became my travel inspiration. I decided to head to a completely new world with a thought that maybe while exploring the world, I can explore myself!
Finally, the travel-phobic ‘Me’ went on wanderlust and I must say that was the best thing that ever happened to me! The journey that started with a blank page (of course with a black spot) is now a book with new chapters keep adding in every now or then.
With no ‘to-do-list,’ ‘must-visits,’ or ‘main attractions,’ I was all set to explore the world with just #TheBlindList.
I had no particular destination in mind but went wherever the life took me. I visited places of all kinds. From lavish streets to narrow lanes, from picturesque beaches to skyscrapers, from metropolitan to countryside, I took the entire world in my stride. California, LA, Las Vegas, Santa Barbara, Yosemite, San Francisco, Tusayan, Arizona and much more places were witness to the great time I had!
I met various people and gained wonderful experiences. The biggest exploration was to get the answer to my question, “Who am I ?” During those days, the LGBT campaign was at its peak in the US. I found that it wasn’t only me but there are hundreds and thousands who are like me. The best part is, they don’t carry the luggage of guilt on their shudder for what they are! This eased my guilt and made me more confident.
Someone right said, “Travel makes you see what a tiny place you occupy in this world.”
I realized people are different and it’s not necessary that everyone understands you. Be what you are, love what you have and it will make the world a better place for you to live.
Now I can safely say, “I’m in love with cities I’ve never been to and people I’ve never met.”
The surprises traveling bring, the experiences you share with others, the interaction you have with people will leave you surprised. It’s just serene and make you feel that there is much more to life than the errands you find yourself engulfed with!
When I returned, I was a completely changed version of ME … I was now More confident, More Determined, and More at PEACE.
For me, Traveling changed my thinking. It changed my perception towards life, towards my own self and taught me the real meaning of my existence! Had I followed the #BucketList, all my concentration would have been to cover all that was there in my bucket. #TheBlindList gave me full room to explore, making it all the more adventurous for me!
I owe the happiness of my life to the experiences of my #TheBlindList trip I made for the first time.
Regarding my mother, Yes, she always wanted a daughter in law to see the face of her grandchildren. Well, I couldn’t still bring a “Bahu” for her but yes, I fulfilled her wish of a grandchild. I adopted a baby and am a proud father to my little princess today. 🙂 🙂
Initially, my family resisted but seeing my determination, they agreed. Today she is the apple of everyone’s life.
Won’t you like to know her name?
Well, I named her “Gati,” meaning ‘Speed.’
The reason behind me giving her that name was that I want her to explore the world and come up with new enriching experiences. I want to tell her that the world is too big and the life is too small. The ‘Gati’ of life shouldn’t stop with any bad experience. Moving on will make you meet yourself! Travel to a new place you have never been with. It opens up your mind and who knows it better than me?
So, that was about Gati.
Won’t you like to know what happened to ME?
Well, about me, I am still the same.
Just that my status as a traveler has changed now – Yes, I am not jokin!!!
Now I am ever ready to explore the world with full of possibilities. I have learnt saying yes to the unknown! Traveling has become a family ritual and we all enjoy it! I am all set to go on #TheBlindList and say #SayYesToTheWorld !
From a travel phobic, today I am a frequent flyer and I am lovin it.
The following video by Lufthansa complete resonates with my thought process. Have a look and I am sure you will love it too!