Aurojit’s Insights this month brought forward a constant struggle that travellers have to engage in not only with their bosses but also with their families. Not everyone understands the desperate urge to head out but us travellers. For a lot of people, travel is just indulgence and therefore an unnecessary expenditure. But for us, it is the yearning of our soul and an irresistable call that gets stronger and stronger till we aren’t able to ignore it anymore.
But what happens if your boss is a headstrong monarch with an inclination towards ordering beheading at the slightest provocation. Can a traveller still get his way? Let us see this after these important announcements:
The Featured Author for the Month of October is none other than Ritesh Gupta who has a talent for narrating engaging and pleasant tales. His ever-positive presence sets a great example for the members of any online community. Congratulations Ritesh! We look forward to finding out more about you, a humble, good-natured ghumakkar, through this month.
The Featured Story for the month of September is Auro’s inspiring tale about his Self Drive trip through Thailand. While a self-driving trip anywhere requires courage, one in a foreign country requires much more than that. For most of us, this wasn’t even a possibility till this poignant, practical tale got us dreaming as well. Thanks Auro for sharing your experiences with us. And congratulations once again.
So coming back to our discussion regarding difficult bosses. Imagine living in a world where the knowledge that the earth is round and not flat is relatively new. And you are a traveller. Ideas are popping in your head and you are dying to try them. Logic tells you that you can sail around the world and not fall off the edge as people had earlier feared. You have the will but no money. What would you do? Find sponsors, of course. But sponsors need to be rich, powerful and you need to make them believe in your dreams. And rich and powerful in that world were also impulsive, often sentencing people to horrible deaths just for amusement. And if you prove to be a bad investment, you cannot even imagine what kind of terrors await you.
But you are a traveller and the call is getting stronger. You cannot sleep, you cannot eat, and you cannot think of anything else. So you decide to risk it all and try your luck. One sponsor laughs in your face, the other advices you to spend your energies elsewhere. One even goes to the extent of giving you a handsome allowance just to shut you up. But you don’t want any of these so you keep trying. And finally you are successful. Someone seems to believe in you and is ready to fund your expedition. You head out into the unknown with your fleet and your eyes fixed eagerly at the horizon. You don’t really travel around the world but end up discovering several new land masses. No big deal!
By now, you would know who I am talking about. This was none other than Christopher Columbus, the father of all travellers. I am very sure that he just wanted to travel when he accidently ended up on the shores of the Americas. Don’t tell this to your children though. This version of history isn’t accepted yet. ;-) But you know and I know. And I think all travellers know.
But in addition to convincing their bosses or risking a grisly death, there is much more that travellers are willing to do to travel. A study at staywyse.org shows that one of the popular reasons to opt for expensive education options in foreign countries is to “immerse yourself in another culture”, which to my Ghumakkar ears sounds eerily like travel that comes with a huge bonus – adding value to your resume. While some of these trav(cough!) students are rolling in money, others eagerly give up on all of their savings for such an opportunity.
There are others who don’t want to spend a fortune but still wish to put a tick mark next to their dream destinations. So they search for other options. Some of them volunteer for development or eco-conservation projects, which cuts down their travel and stay costs to some extent and also gives an opportunity to explore the country well, depending upon the length of the project. Check out some projects at isvolunteers.org and you’ll see what I mean.
But even those who do not wish to use an excuse to travel but aren’t fortunate enough to be rolling in unlimited wealth cannot be stopped when distant destinations come calling. And they go to any extent to support their travel as they go. Travellers can be found singing in the streets or taking up jobs at petrol pumps, schools, and grocery stores to make some money, however meager. Such a scene is more foreign though than Indian. Travel comes before everything else for them. They explore the cheapest possible stay options and survive on the bare minimum.
There are some travelers who take up jobs that require them to travel to places near and far. They no longer need to make excuses anymore. Their bosses are happy because they are so naturally at ease with the nature of the job and they get all the sympathies of their families while they are basking in the awesomeness of their good fortune.
Travellers often put at lot a risk. I’m sure you have taken risks too to be able to travel. If yes, please do share with us. I assure you that a lot of us a dying to know. We will look forward to your stories…