Traveling Alone - Discovering Yourself While Getting Lost

by Adil Mistry


Posted on 8th Apr, 2015


Man Hiking Alone

Travelling alone around the country – first task on my bucket list ticked off and I must say it was an unforgettable experience. Though at first I had never imagined that I would travel all alone but circumstances and a few friends who found a way to ditch the plan eventually led to it. Travelling was always a luxury for me till now but it had become a necessity this time owing to long working periods. Today I will share my experience of 9350 KMs of travelling alone around 7 cities in India and each moment has been a learning experience which I will cherish for a lifetime.

When I was a child I always enjoyed travelling through train like every other child does or maybe that’s just my misconception about children, I travelled in sleeper class because AC always felt like an injustice to the whole travelling experience. So I specifically booked tickets in sleeper class even though some journeys lasted for more than 24 hours.

Train Window Raining
What you see is an illusion. The real world lies beyond it.

Travelling alone has its own advantages - first and foremost, you can behave the way you want without being conscious about the fact that someone is watching you. Secondly, you don't have to share your food which was the best part (yes..yes..I hate sharing my food even though I was taught otherwise when I was young) and the Selfie-World we live in now-a-days did give me a boost to travel alone. I did face a lot of questions which were difficult to answer sometimes about what would I do alone and trust me at that time I sincerely did not have an idea about that but I trusted my ability to have fun even when alone.

I met some amazing people on my journey, had some great food, visited exotic locations and here I am a bit more wiser and a lot more humble because of the awareness of the fact that I am leading such a luxurious life which many of us fail to acknowledge.

Here are some of the highlights of my trip...

Learning how difficult it is to earn a livelihood

If it wasn’t for this man, I wouldn’t truly appreciate the efforts it takes to feed your family who is looking upon you for their survival and how helpless people are in our society with limited resources. Mohammed Aslam working in Mumbai is an istri-wala hailing from UP, working miles away from his family so that he can earn bread and butter. His problems are many but his solution is just one – working everyday, day in and day out.

Mohammed Aslam Mumbai
“There is no one who pays heed to what the poor want and we are just supposed to work on our own for our family."

Shyam Mumbai Fast Paced Life
Shyam says “Mumbai is such a city that you don’t have time to realize whether you are happy or sad. It’s a fast paced city and you just have to work hard to survive."

Customers are everything to a business

I work in a company where customers are treated as Gods and why shouldn’t they be? They are the reason I am getting my pay-check at the end of every month. The same fact was resonated when I visited Umesh’s restaurant in Jaipur. He owns a small eatery and has 2 people serving on his staff but he personally attends to his customers to make sure everything is perfect. He is an MBA aspirant, but what is interesting to note that even before getting a degree he has true skills of an entrepreneur which no MBA can teach you.

Umesh Jaipur Restaurant
"Customers give me a chance to serve them and I want to make sure they don’t regret the experience."

Childhood is the best phase of life

Nilesh truly made me realize how much I miss my childhood. He is not disappointed at the fact that he is deprived of education, in fact he understands his family’s situation and still dreams of achieving something in life. He plays cricket every day on the premises of Gandhi Hall in Indore and trust me he has all the shots in his bag.

Nilesh Indore Cricket
"I want to become a cricketer and studying is not important to achieve that."


No job is small and you can impact people’s life through small gestures

Abhijeet rides an auto in Jaipur which he has been doing for the past 12 years. What's special about him is that he gives discounts to tourists who have come to visit the city. When a person who barely meets his expenses can be so generous why can’t we?

Abhijeet Auto Driver Jaipur
He also makes sure that other auto drivers are not cheating the foreign tourists

India has some truly amazing places and I haven’t even explored 1% of them
Mumbai Shoreline
Sunset at Beach
Lake India
Hillstation in India
Qutab Minar India
Statue


It was tough at times to travel alone, especially when I had to travel in a vacant compartment of a local train in Kolkata at midnight and then walk all the way to my hotel through a deserted road but it was a great experience, I got to face my fears. There was a time when I lost track of the time when I played carom on a footpath and when I was discussing football with a 12 year old kid who happened to have the same team as his favorites as mine.

Dark Road At Night
Carrom on Road

How fortunate was I that I got to explore such beautiful places, meet so many amazing people and each one has left a long lasting effect on me. As I said, this was no more a luxury for me, it was a necessity because it was necessary for me to go out there and experience the hardships people face, experience the nature and its calmness, experience different cultures and more importantly experience of trusting your own judgement.








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About the Author: Adil Mistry

Adil Mistry

Apple fan boy. Vivid traveler. Sports enthusiast. Full time patriot. Wannabe blogger. Dewer! You can follow my other blogs here.

Tags:

Road Trips, Solo Travel, Unique Experiences, India