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  • Travel Tips, from the corner table #fromthecornertable
    Travel

    Travel Checklist – Print, Pin, Plan

    Packing terrifies me. Meet me a week before I am to travel and you will think I am a toddler on a sugar high, the anticipation of travelling and excitement of exploring a new (or been there) place evident on my face. But two days before D-day, a manic look starts creeping into my eyes. Courtesy the re-realisation that I need to pack I need to pack light I could forget important documents I need to take money, insurance, etc I hate packing My idea of packing has always been to create a huge pile of ‘things to carry’ in one corner of my bed. That pile invariably covers the…

  • Munnar, from the corner table, #fromthecornertable
    Travel

    Tales from Munnar #1

    As a child growing up on classical English literature, I was fascinated by terms like chimneys, fireplaces, scones, etc, and phrases like ‘lush greenery’, ‘rolling hills’, ‘winding roads’, ‘sparkling water’ and ‘gushing streams’. All of these seemed fantastical until, in a clichéd but true manner, travelling broadened my horizon and gave meaning to these fantastical terms. However, it was only last year when I had travelled to the Scottish Highlands (read Winding through the Isle of Skye) that I truly understood where those descriptive terms for nature may have come from. As I shared photographs of my trip on social media and with family, there ensued a discussion about similar places in India. It…

  • Travel

    Touching the Tip, Kanyakumari

    Ever get that feeling of wanting to kick yourself because you’ve been lazy and missed doing something important, like clicking the picture of a place that you really liked? And realising the goof-up only when you are digging through files for a photograph to show off or post on social media! It tends to happen to me a lot. Mostly because I invariably lose myself in the surroundings, get busy absorbing everything and forget that I have a phone camera and a digital camera that should be put to good use. The most recent, in this case, being the missing photo of the Kanyakumari railway station – the last station in the…

  • Travel

    Some How-What-Why for Your Athens Trip

    I am blurry eyed and mighty pissed off this Monday morning. And I have no one to blame but myself. What should have been done yesterday or perhaps a day ago, is being done in the wee hours of the morning. Because somewhere in the last few days, I overstuffed my basket of ‘tasks to finish’, lost focus and forgot to type out the post that had been mentally written down a week ago. I am a basket case this Monday morning! But a basket case who has reminded herself of the decision to prioritize. Any tips on that? Monday morning rant aside, it’s time to address some questions that…

  • ‘Trust your gut!’ Tips from a solo female traveller, from the corner table, #fromthecornertable
    Travel

    ‘Trust Your Gut!’ Tips from a solo female traveller

    She: “So… I read that post of yours. The one where you shared travel tips.”Me: “You did? That is great!”She: “Those are generic tips but there’s nothing specific for women.”Me: ____________She: “There is so much more women have to deal with when they travel. You should have written about that too”Me: “Ummm… okay!” This conversation between me and prefer-to-keep-unidentified acquaintance was a bit of an eye-opener. I’d never thought about travel as being gender-specific. And that was a mistake it seems! Because she made me realised that as a female solo traveller, there are certain steps I take to ensure a smooth run. I strongly feel vulnerability is not specific…

  • How to travel solo, from the corner table, #fromthecornertable
    Travel

    How to Travel Solo: Tips from an Expert

    Can I go for another vacation please? I know, I know. You’ll say, “Girl, you just got back from a 10-day trip and you want to go off again?” But travelling is my tonic. It’s the energy drink that makes me power through those hard days, it’s the vitamin pill that pushes me through the long days. It’s on my mind every single minute! Probably why I am already making plans for my next trip, another solo journey. And with these handy pointers from Varun Pachisia, our 50-countries-and-counting man, my next venture as a lone traveller could be another level altogether! Here is what Varun had to say when I…

  • Scottish Highlands, from the corner table, #fromthecornertable
    Travel

    Winding through the Isle of Skye #2

    Did you know that real estate prices in the Isle of Skye have skyrocketed in recent times and hotels/homestays have six month long waiting periods? That is what our charming driver-cum-guide Sean Connery had to say when a fellow tourist asked him ‘how has tourism helped locals’. As is always the case, there are pros and cons to this situation. Search Isle of Skye+tourist+tax and you will come across several articles1 that showcase this issue – while increased footfall does bring in money, it affects the harmony of a place that is not equipped to handle the rush. These articles and discussions make me chipper about the decision – rather…

  • Neist Point, fromthecornertable
    Travel

    Winding through the Isle of Skye #1

    Its winter in Ahmedabad, India, and the minimum temperature has been hovering between 10°C-16°C. Huddled at my desk, feet tucked in thick socks, I shivered and bemoaned the ruthless cold during a telephone conversation with my best friend. Imagine my indignation when she burst into laughter rather than express sympathy over my frozen toes! “Rapti, if you are shivering in this excuse for a winter, how on earth did you survive the Scottish Highlands,” she questioned. Good point. But you see, at the Isle of Skye in Scotland, while my teeth chattered in the bone-chilling cold, my face was frozen into a big grin and my brain churned out poetic…

  • Buchanan Street in Glasgow, #fromthecornertable
    Travel

    Grit+Glamour+Culture = Glasgow

    On March 6, 1989, a 44 year old and his colleagues boarded a British Railway train at the Edinburgh Waverley railway station. The group of six men – all town planners from developing cities of India – was headed to Glasgow as part of a government initiative facilitating knowledge exchange. Among them was my father who was thrilled with the exposure to planning and technological advancement witnessed in the city. But it was the efforts to preserve the industrial heritage of Glasgow whilst creating sync with the cultural fabric that impressed my father the most. “Observe the buildings as you walk through the city. The urban landscape would have changed…