Marketing as a profession, traveling a passion, blogging an obsession and backpacking an addiction, she pretty much spends all her time dreaming about the world she is yet to discover. Meet Aparna Shekar Roy aka Backpacking Ninja. Having backpacked in more than 25 countries, some people call her a wanderer. Some people say she is just lost. But, Tolkien hit the nail on the head when he said â€œNot all those who wander are lost.â€
She is Tolkien’s travel child. Let us hear her story as she sets off on an adventurous journey through Wales, backpacking and blogging. Representing India at the Great Welsh Showdown, she will be facing challenges like surviving in the wild, jumping off a cliff, learning a new language and even making paper out of sheep poo. She takes this journey along with 5 other bloggers from all over Asia. Follow her adventure at www.backpackingninja.com and travel vicariously with her to Wales. Let’s support her representation by constantly pepping and encouraging her through comments on her blog. Time to read her story now!
I keep trying to recall when the travel bug bit me and I just can’t remember. If any of you guys have seen the movie ‘Inception’, Leo explains very well about how people never remember how they got into a dream. They are just bang in the middle of it, and that’s why its a dream. I guess my travel addiction can be compared to this. I’m right in the middle of it and going deeper and deeper into the abyss and I just don’t want to get out of it.
What started as the great Indian rail trip with grandparents to all pilgrimage destinations has now fully grown out of control into spontaneous, unplanned and very frequent backpacking trips to places ranging from the beaches of Bali to the ancient ruins of Peru, from the lakes of Austria to the vineyards of Chile. Amidst planning one trip and just reliving memories from my previous trip, my time goes dreaming about anywhere but here.
Recently, I asked my friends to throw me a new challenge, a new destination and one friend gave me the toughest one. He asked me to stay put in my home for a couple of days. Impossible. So, I decided I’ll make my list of excuses, the ones I so often use to explain to people why I need to travel. They are in no particular order, just as random as they can get.
When I have my morning cup of coffee, I go through a few minutes of indecisiveness whether to use the Italian coffee maker, the French press, the Brazilian Cuador or the good ole South Indian filter. And it would be a shame to drink instant coffee when the world offers so much better. I need my world coffee fix. Let’s just say I prefer shopping for coffee outside India.
I set up a tent in my living room when I had withdrawal symptoms from being out in the wild. My landlord walked in and chatted with me in a very polite way, trying not to suggest I needed therapy. Every once in a while, my tent needs to breathe some mountain air, even if it is the hillocks of Maharashtra.
My home page is not just Google. Its Google maps. Isn’t that a sign?
When I am in Mumbai for a really long period of time, I start looking like my passport photo. Serious and depressed. I am photogenic when I am far away from work. To regularly build on this portfolio of happy pictures, I need to travel.
I lose weight when I travel. I don’t know whether its the walking or whether its my healthy diet. I even calculated the number of months I need to be on the road to be at get back to my ideal BMI. Of course, its a much heavier investment than just going to the gym, but an excuse is supposed to be an excuse.
My husband loves his whiskey. I love him. What better place to pick it up other than duty free? Need I say more?
Even my laptop bag to work is a Wildcraft bag, which is a daily reminder to explore. Of course, going to Andheri East is more difficult than the trek to Machu Picchu and the potholes offer the unpredictability that every traveler dreams of.
I’ve always been good with numbers. But, off late, I seem to remember my 10 digit frequent flyer numbers for a couple of airlines more than my boss’s phone number. Likewise, I remember airport codes better than three letter acronyms from work.
I hate taking decisions. When you travel, the toughest decision you have to make is whether you want to go for the Asian Veg or the Barbeque chicken on the flight. Maybe, sometimes you will be faced with tougher decisions like whether to stay in Three ducks hostel or Flying pigs hostel.
Travel keeps the telebankers away. Actually, I switch off my phone, if I haven’t already thrown it away.
The gist – If you really want something, the world will conspire to make it happen for you. If not, make up your list of excuses like mine.
What is Welsh Showdown?
Welsh Showdown is a tale of six brave bloggers on a quest to discover the captivating land of Wales. Aparna is chosen from India and she has to face five challenges to win the prize.
What can we do?
BlogAdda is proud that one of it’s member Aparna Shekar Roy is selected and representing India. We want her to win and are sure all of you want the same. For the next five days, keep visiting her blog at www.backpackingninja.com to be updated on what she’s doing and support her by commenting on her blog. We will have a few exciting things for all those who support her.