On a Thursday afternoon, I suddenly remember the 60 something uncle me and my husband met in Aru Valley, a small village 19 km from Pahalgam. The uncle had visited to Aru to trek around, he was the CFO of a well known MNC based in Mumbai. We had spent 3 days together, chatting about travel and only travel. We were marveled at his enthusiasm even at 60. How he regretted being a CFO and not a full time traveler.
The day we bid him goodbye, not knowing when shall we meet again, he said “I feel good to see couples like you who in their 30s are more passionate about travelling and exploring the world and not bothered about when and how you will save money to buy a property, the latest car or have the most expensive gadget and how will life after 50 be if you don’t save now.
Be like this forever, at 60 I regret being a workaholic at 30 and not travelling. I have a plush apartment at Santa Cruz, but still I prefer to spend nights in a cozy tent in Hrishikesh or beside Chandratal Lake where there is peace and no amenities. Keep the traveler in you alive and the rest will fall in place, earn but don’t earn so much that you don’t find time to spend it. Nothing in life perhaps gives you so much experience and joy as travel will give you. Live on. God Bless!”
In a world when I find myself surrounded by people competing to have the best of everything, these happy thoughts, blessings of a stranger keeps me going and makes me believe in the saying even more “Travel while you’re young. Don’t worry about the money, just make it work. Experience is far more valuable than money will ever be.”