Self Reflection:Smile Often

During my last trip to Himachal Pradesh, I kept wondering why I was always pulled back towards the mountains of our country.

What is it that gives me this sense of belonging, comfort, a true feeling of home away from home. I have thoroughly enjoyed exploring the hilly regions , mountains whether for a week or a month.

I find myself relaxed, aware, and with a sense of peace that feels more like home than any other place.

While introspecting and observing my behaviour, I realised that I would lower my guard,  smile often and be more patient on my travels as compared to being in the city.

On my trip to Jibhi, it dawned on me that some of the most useful and powerful tools one possesses is their smile and sincerity – It is a way into people’s heart and lives.

I was able to befriend strangers, make awkward scenarios more comfortable and get elders to share their adventurous life stories.

I have often wondered how some photographers capture the essence and joy of people through their images; during this trip I discovered the same joys of sharing happiness and conversations from children to elders…

Sipping chai and chatting up with locals, sharing a meal with my hosts, and meeting travel companions on the way was all a part of openness and the idea of smiling at someone along the way. Not that this was new in my travels yet I found myself more open to strangers and meeting people.

I also realised that the warmth and love you are greeted with in our hills cannot be compared.Being a solo female traveller always raises a few questions, curious looks by locals but the smile and honesty soon lets you into their world and stories.

Soon they are a part of your story and not the other way around.

So with that thought …“Keep smiling because Life is a Beautiful thing and there is so much to smile about” – Marilyn Monroe.

P.s. Some of my favourite smiles from my travels.



24 Quotes to Inspire You to Wander.

For me, travel is the experiment with the best learnings. It brings out curiosity to know the world and the urge to experience the feeling of being alive.

When we travel we get out of the old and settled habits of our daily lives and feel inspired to see the world anew.

As Kate Douglas Wiggins puts it, “There is a kind of magic about going far away and then coming back all changed.” Once you allow yourself to get a little lost, reduce any over-controlling tendencies, and lose the sense of urgency, you no longer want to return to your old habits. You feel like life is offering you a new beginning, and it is.

To help boost the travel spirit in your life, I’ve compiled a list of some handpicked quotes that always inspire me to set out for new horizons!

  1. “Travel brings power and love back into your life.”– Rumi
  2. “Nobody can discover the world for somebody else. Only when we discover it for ourselves does it become common ground and a common bond and we cease to be alone.” – Wendell Berry. A Place on Earth.Picture1
  3. “The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.”– Christopher McCandlessPicture2
  4. “To move, to breathe, to fly, to float,

      To gain all while you give,

      To roam the roads of lands remote,

      To travel is to live.” – Hans Christian Andersen. The Fairy Tale of My              Life: An Autobiography


  1. “One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.”– Henry Miller


  1. “She was free in her wildness. She was a wanderess, a drop of free water. She belonged to no man and to no city” – Roman Payne, The WanderessPicture5
  2. “Travelling outgrows its motives. It soon proves sufficient in itself. You think you are making a trip, but soon it is making you – or unmaking you.”– Nicolas Bouvier.The Way of the World.
  3. “But that’s the glory of foreign travel, as far as I am concerned. I don’t want to know what people are talking about. I can’t think of anything that excites a greater sense of childlike wonder than to be in a country where you are ignorant of almost everything. Suddenly you are five years old again. You can’t read anything, you have only the most rudimentary sense of how things work, you can’t even reliably cross a street without endangering your life. Your whole existence becomes a series of interesting guesses.”– Bill Bryson. Neither Here Nor There: Travels in Europe


9. “Travelling is a brutality. It forces you to trust strangers and to lose sight of all that familiar comfort of home and friends. You are constantly off balance. Nothing is yours except the essential things: air, sleep, dreams, sea, the sky – all things tending towards the eternal or what we imagine of it.” – Cesare Pavese

10. “We are all travelers in the wilderness of this world, and the best we can find in our travels is an honest friend.” –Robert Louis StevensonPicture711. “Gonna travel, gonna travel wild and free

      I’m gonna pack my bags because this great big world is calling me”
      —Elvis Presley – Harem Holiday

12. “Because he had no place he could stay in without getting tired of it and       because there was nowhere to go but everywhere, keep rolling under            the stars…”—Jack Kerouac (On the Road) 

13. “We travel, initially, to lose ourselves; and we travel, next to find                  ourselves. We travel to open our hearts and eyes and learn more about      the  world than our newspapers will accommodate. We travel to bring          what little we can, in our ignorance and knowledge, to those parts of            the globe whose riches are differently dispersed. And we travel, in                essence, to become young fools again- to slow time down and get                taken in, and fall in love once more.”– Pico Iyer

IMG_766614, “There’s a race of men that don’t fit in, 

     A race that can’t sit still;

    So they break the hearts of kith and kin, And they roam the world at will.

    They range the field and rove the flood, 

    And they climb the mountain’s crest; Their’s is the curse of the gypsy           blood, 

    And they don’t know how to rest.” – Robert W. Service


15. “We wander for distraction, but we travel for fulfillment.” – Hilaire Belloc 

16. “I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.” –Susan Sontag

17. “The open road is a beckoning, strangeness, a place where a man can lose himself.” –William Least Heat Moon


18. “People don’t take trips – trips take people.” –John Steinbeck

  1. “Once the travel bug bites there is no known antidote, and I know that I shall be happily infected until the end of my life” ― Michael Palin
  2.  “Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world” – Gustave Flaubert


21. “For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.”Robert Louis Stevenson


22. “How you live your life is up to you. You have to go out and grab the world by the horns. Rope it before it ties you down and decides for you.” Country Girl: Letting Love and Wanderlust Take the Reins.

  1. “Bizarre travel plans are dancing lessons from God.” Kurt Vonnegut
  1. “Certainly, travel is more than the seeing of sights; it is a change that goes on, deep and permanent, in the ideas of living” ~ Mary Ritter Beard