What you seek, is seeking you. – Rumi Ever since I started traveling, I have been waiting for this big trip to happen, that will change my life and I will come back this whole new person. While every new journey has been a completely unique and exciting adventure, I always find myself coming back and easily falling into the trap that everyday life is. Once the vacation hang-over wears off, the grumbling and complaining starts. But Jordan was different. To start with, I never imagined traveling by myself in the Middle East. Even though I have spent a big part of my life living in Kuwait, the idea of traveling by myself in any of the Middle Eastern countries was horrifying. But travel alone I did. Unlike every other vacation that takes months to plan, with hours at length devoted to research and preparation, Jordan was very spur of the moment. I booked my ticket, got my visa, looked up some blogs, made a list of places to see, in no particular order and …
I live in a country that goes half way to boiling point in summer (Kuwait in summer = human tandoori). I have lived in Mumbai where the humidity on an average day is about 65 %(*1). But nothing and I mean nothing can prepare you for Kerala in April. The average humidity for the month of April in Kochi, Kerala is well into the 70s and the temperature ranges anywhere between 35-40 degrees Celsius (*2). Now combine that with a heavy wedding sari, make up and stilettos, the result is your very own personal hell.
The best way to learn how to swim is to be thrown into the deep end. The best way to learn how to travel alone is to be abandoned by your travel buddy after you reach the destination! A very close friend of mine once told me, “Z being alone is the ultimate truth of life”, and rightly so. But being alone has also always been my ultimate fear, alone-ness is my spider, my closed space, my height, my water, all rolled into one.
It’s a whole year today since I left Mumbai. For any writer, if they have stayed in Mumbai, a memoir is customary. I suppose.
Note: The views expressed in the article are from what I best understand of my religion. These are my own views and in case I do unknowingly hurt sentiments, I apologize in advance for it. I am a Muslim. I belong to the Shia sect. And recently I visited Karbala (a town in Iraq). To get you a little acquainted with what I am trying to state here, if you are: A Hindu: it is equivalent to being in Kurukshetra where the battle of Mahabharat was fought. A Christian: Visiting the exact cross where Christ must have been crucified. A Buddhist: Stood under the tree where Buddha attained his enlightenment.
The first thing I expected to be hit by, when I entered mecca was His Magnanimity The first thing that I was actually hit by, Man’s Unquenching Thirst for Urbanization.