This is from times outdated. A time and place where smarter phones were yet to come and smarter people were yet to evolve. Not so far off in past actually, when people traveled by sniffing the scents and smiling at faces. This one is for the travelers who like to get lost.

1. Smile

New lands bring in new faces. New features. New eyes to look through from. Eyes of the people you meet and the drivers you greet and the co-travellers that shuffle in those tightly squeezed seats.

Things get Indianesque in spaces – compact and hot and humid too. Smile in such times, for what’s a journey that doesn’t force you to share tap water and life stories with strangers.

What a three hour local bus ride can give – the good, bad and the funnily uglies, a shared cab experience can never conjure up. Smile at the cheapest travels available and step in them with wonder of child that looks at the shiny little wrappers lying in mud with eyes of magic.

2. Take awhile

Not everything till the end has to be figured out right away. Go meet the places on the way first. And the routes ahead get moulded from there too. Get down, ask people about directions and their suggestions on when and how to reach it. Feel okay in being a stranger for those you meet love to guide you.

Trust that what’s meant for you awaits not just at the destination, but is sprinkled in your path as people, local fruits and places of worship in nooks unheard of by the tourist community.

And slowly, you might discover yourself dropping destinations too. Sniffing the scents and going where life takes you. It’s not that hard, for trust is what we all are made up of.

3. Walk a mile

Don’t be in a hurry to book a glossy rickshaw or check in the first good looking hotel, especially if you have been wise enough to travel light on back till now. Walk around. Go chat up with local people and ask them of cheaper and better options to reach a place or look up a place.

Often the most interesting answers don’t lie at the crowded railway stations or bus stands, but a little bit farther from there. Into the common place market where common people like you are busy buying toothpastes and groceries.

Walk into their life and let them speak of their native land to you. Ask them where they are going and figure out if you feel like taking a walk with them till the next corner, or maybe the next peak. Before google spoke, that’s how people figured travels out.

4. Clean the swill

If carrying garbage from cities into hinterlands is foolish, stuffing serene and small places with plastic and beer bottles is plain arrogance. There’s time and tide of celebration, and then there’s also a call for cleaning the stuff you brought and spread around the place. Chips wrappers, water bottles, beer cans and all that has smell of plastic around it. Throwing them around generously is you choking your own way the next time you guide your friends on the same trek again.

Makes place your temples, for they teach you of things you have forgotten about yourself. Not everything needs to smell like dustbins that we are so addicted to in our gullies.

5. Wait until

Wait until you get the feel. Trust the hunches.

Of the right time to start or take a break. Of the right people to walk along with. That driver who seems good at heart but has an dodgy vehicle. Choose him for once. Wait until the seasons grow shade of clouds on your path , or the sun coaxes you for the next day.

Travel in harmony with the things and chances that grow around you. Where’s the rush. The journey has to be enjoyed. Wait some more on that dhaba you loved. Burp some more of the sherbet you stumbled on. And rest some more to take in the views of the climb.

Peaks are outbursts, but the real charm lies in the winds of the valleys. Wait until they let you go.

6. Smile

Smile at the failures and the goofups. The missed buses and the overpaid taxis. The wrong decisions and the fights of ‘I-was-right’ in market places.

Smile because a travel brings out the best and worst of you. The generous and the misers in you. You are whole, the travel reminds you. A mix of the beauty and the beasts within.

Accept, smile and be grateful.

Blog By: Dattaprasad