Posted in Food, Heart, Joy, Travel, Types, Uncategorized

FOOD FAVOURITES

Food.

To me, it is a word and a mood all at the same time. One of the best things of being on a trip is the variety of food you get to try. Whether it’s the local delicacies or the fancier versions of your daily diet, it is something you look forward to.

On this trip, I didn’t go all out and try extravagant food items but I truly enjoyed some of the things I had. A few items that are filling, delicious and a no-fail are mentioned below. Remember, they are not complete meals, just some of my all-time food favourites.

  1. Eggs, Hash-Browns, Fruits, Sausages and Juice-

Is your mouth watering? Mine sure is. No matter which part of the world you are in, this is a wholesome dish. Whether you have it for breakfast or as a snack or any meal, it is sure to make you feel full, but pump you up with energy at the same time. This way, you won’t feel sluggish throughout the day! Added bonus: nothing can really go wrong with this dish, so it’s money well spent.

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  1. Yogurt-

This is not unique as most of us have this at home. But when you’re travelling, this little handy snack is amazing. Plus, in a hotel/resort, they usually have various varieties for you to try. This way, you can know which flavours you like and go buy yourself some in bulk from a grocery store later. Keep it in your backpack if you’re going to be out roaming or site-seeing and have a pick-me-up ready whenever you feel tired or hungry. I tried strawberry and kiwi and my oh my, it was yumm.

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  1. Good old Donuts and Coffee-

It doesn’t have to be freshly brewed to be freaking amazing. The aroma alone can make you drool. Pair this wonderful hot drink with a donut of your choice and oh la la, you have the perfect duo. Take this out by the pool or enjoy it while watching a movie. Do whatever you want, but make sure to enjoy this comfort food!

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  1. The Desert Bar-

You may not find it everywhere you go, but if you do, take full advantage of it. If you are anything like me and don’t have a major sweet tooth, pack some of these items and take them to your room. This way, you can have them whenever you crave something sweet.

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  1. Cereal Mix-

Hope this doesn’t sound too dull because it’s really not if you come up with your own mix. What are you afraid off? Go nuts and try all the cereals they have put in front of you. Mix and match and you may have a winner. Same goes for juices, try ‘em all. I know I did!

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  1. The Speciality-

Now each place is going to have something that it is famous for. It can be chocolate or it can be cheese. It can be meat or it can be a sweet. Where I was, I indulged myself with two of the local specialities.

  • Chikki-

You have a huge variety in this category. When faced with the challenge of deciding which one to get, just take the assorted mix. Life saver.

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  • Fudge-

Now, I don’t exactly know what all goes into the making of it, but the final product is really fun to have. Again, there are so many varieties, that you have to scratch your brains for a bit!

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Hope these images have not made you very ‘hangry’ and I hope you enjoyed this mini list of food items that are a staple.  Happy eating and catch you all next time!

#travelweek Post 4

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Posted in Emotional, Heal, Heart, Joy, Reality, Travel, Truth, Uncategorized

Finding Solace

If you faced the desperate need to take a vacation from everything you’re doing, there is a good chance you were looking for a getaway from your rut. You’re not alone. For the past few weeks, I’ve been a victim to this feeling of nonchalance. It is persistent and cheerless.

You feel like you need something, however big or small, a sort of change around you to give you a breath of fresh air. And you think, leaving everything for a few days and going to a new place is going to that for you. You plan a whole bunch of things you can do during your retreat. You make up your mind that you want to feel relaxed and you want something new and you decide you want your mind to stop wondering why its feeling so low. With all that said, you pack up your things and get going.

What next? You want all the above things to come true. Maybe they will for you, maybe they won’t, and the reason I’m typing this is because for me, it was neither here nor there.

I made up my mind that I want to do something worthwhile with my trip, that I wanted to make it the happiest time. I took on various tasks, so determined to find that little shred of peace and happiness. And now that I’m back, with the same nonchalance looming over my head, I realised something that I would like to share with you all, whether you are on a trip or just whiling away your time at home…

  1. Stop Trying to Chase it All-

You cannot possibly do it all and see it all. So wouldn’t it be wonderful if you made peace with that thought and dropped your chase? A weight will be off your shoulders. Just because you want to get out of a rut, doesn’t mean you have to find something else to do. Take this time to be with yourself. Communicate with your heart. Feel whatever your mind wants you to feel. Maybe then, you will find the break you are scanning for.

  1. Talk to Someone-

A vacation doesn’t mean you have to constantly have fun. Have heart to heart conversations with someone who understands what you are going through. Chances are, the person in front of you was looking for something just like that. Ease your mind…

  1. Don’t Cram It-

It’s not about what all you did on your trip, how many places you saw, how many adventures you had, how many pictures you clicked or how many memories you made. If you need it, chill out in your room. Don’t dress up if you don’t feel like it, order in instead of going to the restaurant, finish that novel you were dying to read. Do whatever the hell you want. Just remember, don’t try to do it all, because then my friend, that feeling of being lost will set right in again…

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  1. Meditate-

This one may seem cliched, but sometimes it’s a good thing. Always wanted to see what the fuss was all about? Why not give it a try on your trip? There is no right or wrong, just peace.

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      5. Read-

There will be a library around you, but this is not restricted to books. Read articles online, google what you are feeling. It is always amazing to see how someone around the world is feeling the same as you. It is a temporary comfort

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So many people that I know are feeling the way I am, lost and confused, hoping for a break. Maybe it’s in our own hands. Maybe we need to stop running after fun and let it come naturally. Maybe we need to let ourselves feel the way we are feeling in order to heal.

Maybe, just maybe, at the end of this vacation/trip, we will have the strength to come back swinging. Because at the end of the day, it is all about the comeback and the knockout punch…

#TRAVELWEEK DAY 3  

Stay tuned for more…

 

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Posted in Checklist, Food, Heal, Heart, Travel, Uncategorized

THINGS YOU CAN DO AT THE RESORT

Your travel time could be an hour or several, but the build up of excitement to reach your hotel/resort is unchanged! You plan everything you want to do once you arrive at your destination. However, many a times, you face a loss of things to do for various different reasons! Don’t you worry though, ’cause I’ve got your back bro…

  1. Look out for the Activity Folder- 

Almost always, your room will have a folder filled with pamphlets of things you can do at the hotel. It will contain all the details of the time, venue and charges applicable. For example, a wine and dine, DJ night, cook off with the chef or a variety of workshops!

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  1. Meet the Concierge-

Find him and make him your bestfriend. He will be your go-to guide in the resort. He will assist you to find everything that you should be doing, eating, watching and the list can go on.

  1. Get in touch with Nature-

You’re on a vacation for crying out loud! It is not necessary to have something planned for every second of the day! Just go find a quiet area and meditate or relax. It is important to become one with nature and calm your soul. Turn it into your personal healing time.

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  1. Hit the Gym or the Playroom –

Almost every resort will have one. If you are a health freak, get your butt to the gym. If you want to bond with the people you have come with or just want to have some fun, go to the mini playroom and compete in some friendly game of snooker.

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  1. Befriend the Localites-

Talk around the staff or the employees and you will hit the jackpot when you find someone who stays in that city. They will be able to tell you all the non-tourist places, food joints, things to do or areas to visit. They will be able to tell you everything that the net will not be able to do. If you want to feel the true essence of the place you are visiting,  definitely try this out.

 

  1. Explore-

Take your buddies and roam around, figuring out where a certain staircase leads to or which path connects where. If you had a little bit of a detective in you growing up, this safe mini adventure will put a bit of kink in your stay.

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  1. Meet the Chef-

Did you ever want a friend who was amazing in the kitchen, you know, for your hungry tummy? Why not make friends with the chef? When you genuinely like some dish that you try at this hotel/resort, just ask to compliment the chef. Once you get to do that, build a rapport. He may give you a tour of the kitchen or even let you try some of his specialities.

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8. Ask Away-

Don’t be hesitant to ask for “what else can you give me?” at the reception. Most likely, they have a whole bunch of things kept ready for a guest like you. They may give you a dart board or a variety of movies to watch or badminton rackets or cycles or music speakers. Just ask for it!

 

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  1. The Secret Menu-

Now, I’ve never really experienced this but the legend says that, all these places usually have a secret menu with food items that are not written in their regular menu card. Try your luck, you might land with something really fancy!

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  1. Get drenched in the Hot Water-

Emphasizing on the point of relaxing, just fill up that bath tub and request for some bubble bath. If your hotel doesn’t have a tub, a shower with a loofah is just as good! Feel all your tension wash away!

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So folks, this was my list of things you can do at the resort other than the usual itinerary. Try some of them out in your next travel adventure and perhaps come back to let us all know if it worked or not! Happy Reading! Look out for tomorrows post!

#travelweek

Posted in Checklist, Packing, Travel, Types, Uncategorized

THE PRE-PACKING CHECKLIST

Are you one of those people who leave all the important things related to packing for the very last minute, freak out, mess up and leave the house tormented by the thought of having forgotten something? Yeah, join the club…

Since I am writing a post on this, it must be pretty obvious that I like living on the edge when it comes to packing and generally leave everything for the night before. However, I am a changed woman with new habits that I’m trying very hard to inculcate. So, I’ve made this checklist of things that I feel are important to be checked off way before you actually start packing your bag. They may seem mundane, but doing them will save you a lot of sweat and tears.

Before we jump right into the list, this is the first post of my travel week #travelweek ! I’m going to be posting an article every day, all related to travelling. As a not-so-experienced traveler, hope these simple articles come handy in some way or the other.

Without further ado, let’s dive into the pre-packing checklist:

 

  1. Wash and Iron your clothes people-

This may seem so obvious that you are going to feel tempted to skip this post. BUT, how many of us really do this a few days in advance? The tip is to plan out your outfits for the trip, get them all washed and cleaned and keep them away till the time for packing arrives. Don’t be tempted to wear them before packing.

I don’t say this lightly. I had once washed my delicates the night before I left for a trip and forgot to pack them up in the morning. Long story short, as we arrived at our destination, others went to sightsee, I went to look for a lingerie store. Yeah…

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  1. All about Electronics-

Plan in advance if you need to buy spare batteries for something, if you need an adapter if you are travelling abroad or if you simply require extra chargers.

You might want to consider an extension cord just in case your bed is far away from the electric plug and you plan to stay there a solid amount of days.

Lastly, if you are going to a place where you know you’re going to spend a lot of time in water, you might want to consider getting a water-proof phone case. It’s all about planning ahead y’all.

Most importantly, clear up your phone storage. It’s a huge dampener if you miss the perfect shot just because you didn’t have the place for it in your phone!

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  1. The Cosmetics Pouch-

Whip out that handy-dandy cosmetics pouch about a week prior to your trip. Then, whenever you use a product that you know you require on a daily basis, directly keep it in your pouch instead of putting it back in your cupboard. This way, by the time you have to pack your bag, you don’t have to worry if you’re missing something out because everything you require is already packed away in that little pouch.

              You can also have a separate travel toothbrush packed in so that you can brush your teeth peacefully on the day of your travel, knowing you aren’t forgetting it.

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  1. Get the Stink Off-

There is nothing more embarrassing than sniffing around a room, wondering where that rotten smell is coming from, only to realise its emanating from your own two feet. A week before you leave, make sure to wash your sports shoes, clean the mud off your heals and polish any other footwear you plan to take along with it. This will give you adequate time to dry them well and get them repaired if needed.

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  1. Documentation-

Make extra copies of any important documents that you feel are going to be needed in your absence regarding work, college, school or anything else that comes to your mind. Prepare separate folders with proper labels and hand them over to a friend or a colleague who you know will be your proxy in your absence.

You want your trip to be burden-free. If you don’t have any ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ hanging over your head due to your absence, you’ll be able to relax so much better. Go grab someone you can trust.

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  1. Get some Grooming-

Why carry razors with you on the trip just because there wasn’t any time for a visit to the parlour last minute? Make an appointment a few days prior to leaving and get that ticked off your list.

              Everyone wants to look their best when they are out of town, so why not put some actual time into grooming and pampering yourself?

 

  1. Medicines-

Imagine all the things you don’t want to happen to you during your vacation and the things you don’t want to pack for those situations. Imagined? Now, pack all those things anyway. Go shopping for all the medical things much before you pack your bag. You don’t want the stress of not finding them on time looming on your head. Its best to pack it up before.

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  1. Take Care of your Best Buds-

Your pets! They come first on the priority list. Find someone to take care of them and book them a week before. Another option is to ask a friend to look after them while you’re gone, but don’t throw the responsibility on them at the last hour. Check their availability a few days in advance as well.

              Next, buy bulk supplies of food and litter beforehand so neither you, your caretaker nor your pet has to suffer later!

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  1. Fill Up Your Tank-

It’s best to not leave this for when you finally leave your house. There could be a huge time-consuming line, the pumps could be closed or there could be one of the thousand other damming possibilities. Feed that car with fuel in advance.

 

  1. Home Sweet Home-

Take the time to tidy up your room and your house before you leave. It’s bound to get messed up in the process of getting things ready for packing. But after a wonderful vacation, the last thing you want is to return to a cluttered room. Why not continue the vacation feel at home as well?

 

Hope this little checklist helps you to pre-pack better! Have a great trip. Stay tuned in for #travelweek ! Hit the like button and leave a comment if you have any other ideas to add to this list!

 

 

Posted in Europe, Travel, Uncategorized

My European Experience

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We flew over the Swiss Alps and glided down the sparkling Lake Geneva laced with wooden cottages, only to land within a few minutes in cloudy Geneva, Switzerland. The moment our foot was out of the airplane, the cold breeze hit us, and we knew, we had touched down in Europe. From 40 to 4 degrees, the drop in temperature felt like pure bliss.

We had an immediate train to Interlaken via Bern, and were mortified that there was just a 6 minute time gap to switch platforms. So as our practice for Indian local trains goes, we pushed through the crowd with our bags and dashed into the train only to realize we had 2 minutes to spare. The process was so smooth due to clear directions and instructions on the platform. From then on we learnt that this country had tremendous value for one’s time and we were never worried. Whether it be Switzerland or Paris, their Public Transportation is extremely efficient. Every second is taken into consideration and every single bus, train, etc. is right on schedule. In the small cities of Switzerland, it takes you about a day to figure out their entire transport system. After that, moving around is a piece of cake.

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We longed to see the European beauty and that was the first thing that we noticed. Interlaken welcomed us with lush green carpets with grazing cows, snow-clad peaks, vintage houses with the brightest blooming flowers, lakes and so much more. And since we were travelling on our own, we had the leisure to spend hours appreciating the surreal beauty. The creative and aesthetic sense is ingrained in each individual person and so every home.

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The experience to the Top of Europe- the Jungfraujoch Peak (11,371 ft.) was more than thrilling, but it was crammed with tourists. Even though we enjoyed playing in the magnificent snow, the real splendor lay in the small villages down below.

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We were loving their country, but it lacks a certain warmth which is felt in our own. Though the people there do help you when needed, they have a tendency to look down at foreigners, especially if we do not speak their native language. So when we hunt down an Indian restaurant after getting tired of their sandwiches and other foods bland to our palate, we expected some brotherly treatment, but were sadly disappointed by the indifference displayed by the Indian owner to his own people.

After experiencing the magical land of Interlaken, Luzern city suddenly felt very commercial to us, though we enjoyed the boat cruises and walks on the Kapellbrücke. The same applied to Paris. Paris- a City of Lights, felt much like Mumbai at first sight. Crowded and Chaotic. However, the TGV train that ran at a speed touching 330 km/hr, took us from Basel, Switzerland to Paris. An experience that shouldn’t be missed.

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Other than the Eiffel Tower, Arch de Triomphe, Louvre museum and other mesmerizing structures, Paris is adorned with stunning old buildings, sculptures and monuments.  For those who love high end shopping, Champs-Élysées is your paradise.

You do grow to love their fast paced lives in their underground metros in just a few days. These places had a unique feel to them that made the departure so much harder. You just have to love it.

Switzerland is blessed with God-given natural benefits. After seeing their massive fresh-water lakes for two weeks which constantly get refilled by the downpour, it was very disheartening to see the dry, slum-covered landscape while landing in Mumbai. But nevertheless, we felt proud when the airhostess announced, ‘All Indian Passengers flying with us, Welcome Home!’

It was a fabulous experience, and the first vadapaav after hitting the Highway to Pune put a cherry on the top.

Things to remember-

  • Buy the Swiss Pass for Switzerland which gives you access to every transport facility, including boat cruises.
  • After trying all their delicacies, you do miss our food (especially the vegetarians), so carry instant food packets from home. Buy small yogurt packs and bananas from their local stores to have during outings.
  • Carry an umbrella and a jacket at all times as it may start raining anytime.
  • Book all your tickets (eg. Disneyland, Louvre, etc.) from India itself to avoid the painfully huge lines there.
  • Grab their local maps and explore adjoining cities on adventure sprees.

 

In the end, we came back with a bucket full of memories to last us a lifetime. And though India welcomed us back home, we carried a little piece of the beautiful Europe with us!

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