Often during my travels, I ponder about the reasons why I travel and about what I’ll take back from my experiences. Most of it till now, has been about breathtaking moments that are steeped in visually arresting sights. Sometimes, it is also about astounding architectural creations that have withstood the ravages of time and the elements and given me a peek into fascinating historical accounts of the times gone by.

However, bundled in between these are the smaller moments – the ones that have filled me with pure joy or added that bright spark to a trip and occasionally, left a profound influence on my opinion about various aspects of our lives. This post is therefore, dedicated to some such moments that may not occupy too much space in my memories but have carved a niche for themselves all the same.

Woman at Anegundi
This woman was selling a curious mix of beedis, some candies and other assorted items that were of no interest to me. She was quite insistent on a ‘present’ (read money) in return for taking her photograph. Although when I showed her this photograph, her face broke into a big smile and she forgot all about the ‘present’ – it’s not a joke when I say a camera can break down barriers and initiate conversations
Autorickshaw in Hampi
Autorickshaws and sign boards on Indian roads can make for quite an amusing read and this one in Hampi is a prime example..it brought more than a smile on our faces in spite of the relentless heat
Nilgiri Mountain Railway
The sheer variety of people you meet on the Indian railways is immense and probably unmatched in presenting a cross-section of people from all over the country in one place. Shot at Coonoor railway station, this photo, I think, embodies the above statement perfectly.
Tourists at Belur
Sometimes I think, as a nation, we tend to under estimate the richness of our own cultural heritage and often, it takes an outsider to remind us of about lucky we are to be endowed with such wealth and how we should do our utmost to preserve it
Evening snacks at Joginder Nagar
No ‘paranthe’, no food items, no maggi nothing. At around 5 in the evening, we hungry lot were quite disappointed at finding nothing in this bare bones tea stall. But then the owner offered to make simple bun-butter and tea for us and we couldn’t turn him down. Delight is an understatement, the simple snack turned out to be so delicious that I think the main ingredient must’ve been something else
Tea stall owner in Dharamsala
This tea stall owner at Dharamsala handed over my ‘cutting chai’ to another customer by mistake. When he realized his mistake, he apologized profusely and served me tea in the center of a plastic tray, in a very grand yet courteous manner.
Proof of how simple actions grounded in genuine affection can right a wrong many times over. I am often reminded of this guy whenever I run into the rough end of a customer service cell
Children at Anegundi
Children can make your day like no one else can. Their joy and mirth at being photographed is unmatched. This group at Anegundi was shrieking and thrilled at getting themselves photographed – look at the joy on their faces, the impish smile and twinkle in the center one’s eyes and the mischievous look on the boy’s face.
Brought a smile to your own face, didn’t it ? Little children, little joys.
Monastery caretaker at Sera Jey
This caretaker not only opened the doors to the Sera Jey monastery in Bylakuppe, but also allowed me to sit inside for as much time as I wanted, all alone, without question, without for once flinching at the fact that I didn’t appear to be a Buddhist or a pilgrim.
Little acts like these mean a lot to me and make me wonder as to when did religious dogma come about to be used to spread hatred.

These were but a small glimpse into some of my travel experiences. Do write in below if you’ve got anything to share as well.

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9 thoughts on “The smaller moments in travel

  1. Love these shots…the true look at travel and discovery. Your photo and thoughts with photo #4 is very accurate…when people begin to take things they see every day for granted, it becomes easy to not see the great value. One of my favorite quotes: “Ralph Waldo Emerson once asked what we would do if the stars only came out once every thousand years. No one would sleep that night, of course. The world would become religious overnight. We would be ecstatic, delirious, made rapturous by the glory of God. Instead the stars come out every night, and we watch television.”

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    1. That quote is as beautiful as it is thought provoking, Dalo. Thanks for taking the effort to post it here. Your blog is a gem for me, particularly the ones revolving around Hong Kong as it reminds me of my own short stint there. I hope to visit that place again.

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  2. The one I liked the most , “SHOT AT COONOOR RAILWAY STATION”. Perfect frame. Perfect words. The blog is well-written and must say, you have captured your thoughts well in these pictures, or even if its vice-versa, cheers to that 🙂 🙂

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    1. Honored by the appreciation. It takes a little solitude and a lot of introspection sometimes, to convey what I want to say through these photos…will be super glad the day these photos will speak for themselves.

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