The honeymoon period is well and truly over. My Indian adventure started well, but I warn you now, I hold nothing back. So, if you’re squeamish you might want to stop reading at this point!
If truth be told, if someone had mentioned a trip to India, I would have been the first in the line. I could go on for hours about why I love the country so much. That said, it would take me just as long to list the things I hate about the country. India will forever be the country that so many non-Indians hold in their heart and yet equally as many fail to see the attraction.
As an intrepid traveller for many years, I’ve always been amazed at how the most forthright advice comes from those who have...how can I put it?... never actually done, been, seen or experienced the very thing they are giving YOU advice on. I'm sure they mean well, for the best part anyhow. But you should certainly let their two-bobs worth go in one ear and out the other. While smiling and nodding your head obviously.
The initial excitement of my trip to India still burns strong. But, as the new year proceeds and the date of my departure draws closer, I have to say the enormity of this adventure has started to feel very real. The realisation that, as the UK winter brings colder temperatures our way, they won’t be a patch on the cold harshness and subzero temperatures I'll face when trekking alongside the mountains of Kashmir.
I knew it had to happen sooner or later; when you’re on the journey of exploration and self-discovery time waits for no man. I knew that I had reached a point in my life where I needed to create a new adventure. Create new opportunities that will pave the way, on the untrodden path that we call our future.
I can still remember the feeling when I packed the last of my belongings into The Big Yellow storage facility I had rented. I felt a slight apprehension and nervousness but also a feeling of freedom, knowing that for the next 12 months I didn't have a care in the world, at least from a work perspective anyhow.