As a kid, traveling meant going to Nani’s house once every two years. We would travel by train, carry lunch boxes, Kismi toffee bars and read Pinki and Champak on the way. Those journeys were great fun and the time they took made no difference. God knows why we started flying.
My first flight was when I was 7 or 8. I got severe pain in the ears. I remember crying, that’s it, that’s all I remember. My first flight alone was when I was 18. I remember sitting next to a very handsome uncle reading Archies. I think he was the shortest crush I had. For the shortest time, I mean. Flying, suddenly, had a new meaning.
I think that was the time we got our passports made. There was no particular reason. Maybe it was a fad. Afterall, who went abroad? But I did. I went to Dubai in 2003 and fell in love with a foreign land. Zooming cars, clean roads, diverse cuisine, and just basic order at every place left me awestruck. Little did I know that I would be living in a foreign land for the longest time.
After 10 years, I got my passport renewed. It had two visa stamps which wasn’t bad at all. Even though travelling abroad had become economical and much easier, it wasn’t as frequent. Anyway, it’s been 3.5 years since I got my new passport.
The point I’m trying to come to is – that passport is full! It has visa stamps all over it. I’m counting the countries I’ve visited, flights I’ve taken, miles I’ve accumulated. I’m relishing the memories I’ve made, paths I’ve tread and remembering the people I’ve met.
Most of all, I’m counting my blessings.
I applied for a new passport booklet today – a jumbo one this time. May God bless this one as well! And yes, I already thanked the Boy for showing me the world.