As I travelled, I came across societies and communities very different from mine. They had different cultures, values and traditions. In large cosmopolitan cities such as London, there are people from all over the world. There is a mix of cultures, traditions and values. In small towns and villages, there is a lot more homogeneity within society. In the United Kingdom, a small village in Wales is not as racially diverse as a small borough in London. It is the case around the world. Mumbai is a lot more diverse than a small village in Karnataka, India. As I travelled … Continue reading Lesson 21: We are the same. We are different.
Ciudad Perdida, also known as Lost City, is the archaeological site of an ancient city in the Sierra Nevada, near Santa Marta, Colombia. Tourists can do a three to five-day trek to the Lost City. Archaeological studies have confirmed that the ruins are more than a thousand years old. Here three tribes – the Arhuacao, the Kogis and the Wiwas, are settled in the villages. In the 1970s, treasure hunters discovered the place, hidden from the public for centuries, and since then the authorities have named the site as Lost City. The local tribes always knew of their city’s existence … Continue reading Lesson 20: Do not judge people by your maps
On my travels in South America, the local communities introduced me to the concept of Pachamama, a Quechua word for Mother Earth. Principally it means that we are all connected to the broader ecosystem. We need to pay our respects to Mother Earth and treat it with a lot of love and care. It is a simple fact of life that we, in the modern world, have forgotten. Today there is much concern about climate change. It is indeed an existential crisis, and we may not have much time to sort out the coming struggles. It is quite clear from … Continue reading Lesson 19: Pachamam – We are one ecosystem
There are a few positives about the COVID 19 experience. One positive, which most cannot deny, is we let the earth heal again. We saw animals out of the depths of jungles, where we had pushed them to, into the streets of cities. We heard more birds and saw more wildlife in lakes and rivers. The air smelled fresher. In Nepal, where I was when countries across the globe started to close their borders, there were stories of the locals in Kathmandu waking up to the sight of Everest. In Pokhara, the sky was clear, the air crisp and the … Continue reading Lesson 18: Nature thrives.We heal
On multiple safaris in Africa, we had some of the most breathtaking sights. We got to experience many animals, including the Big Five (The Lion, The African Buffalo, The Elephant, The Leopard and The Rhino), Hippos, Monkeys, Baboons, Cheetahs, Warthogs, Hyenas and many others. The experiences in Namibia, Botswana and Zambia were breathtaking. We couldn’t expect anything better until we reached Tanzania. In Tanzania, the safari experiences at the Serengeti plains and the Ngorongoro Crater were ridiculously mind-blowing. Hundreds of Wildebeests and Zebras roamed the Serengeti Plains. We got to experience a black rhino in the distance. Due to the … Continue reading Lesson 17: Greed is nothing but a path to misery
In Vietnam, the Ha Giang Loop is one of the most breathtaking motorbike journeys, done on a four-day tour. You ride through winding roads, climbing higher through the mountains, experiencing stunning landscapes along the way. I joined a motorbike group tour comprising six riders and six tourists to complete the Ha Giang Loop I sat on the back on a motorbike, as the pillion rider, while an experienced Vietnamese took charge of the bike. On the last evening of the tour, the Vietnamese riders organized karaoke for the group. I was the only one who joined in but did not … Continue reading Lesson 16: Sing when everyone is watching