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The Road is My Therapist!

The Road is My Therapist!

found the road by mistake. I decided to go out for a brief drive on Sunday morning and suddenly found myself itching for some more alone time, driving on NH-66. I had intended to explore a spice garden I had heard good things about.

Terrain less explored

I sure am lucky to be living in a small town on the Konkan coast of India. A terrain less explored, the district of Uttar Karnataka is lush green, with hills and valleys on one side and the lashing waves of the Arabian Sea on the other. I live inside a beautiful Cantonment, with neatly laid out roads and scenic beauty, which opens out in front of my eyes every single day. I am spoiled indeed now and, can never really settle down in a crowded metro again.

So I drove…and drove, down the national highway, onto rural routes that twisted and bent through forests of Karnataka- for no other reason than that I had an urge to go on. I was on my own, wrapped in solitude, lost in thought, when I missed that crucial turn, finding myself at the head of a blocked-off road. A “kachcha rasta” lay ahead, and beyond it lay a blue stretch of sea, winding and unblemished. I sat still for a few minutes wondering if I must go ahead and just take one little peak of the sea. As I accelerated, the car growled through the muddy road at every arc, and the sun cast a high-speed flicker of shadows from behind the bare trees. It was fun, exhilarating and when I hit the end of the road, the feeling that I got was truly a new high. I wasn’t ready for the adventure to be over.

This is the marvelous thing about driving. You could head off to anyplace, find a diversion and explore.

I seek neither a private racetrack nor a plush vehicle

Yet I am drawn to the road. Many a times a simple cycle does the magic. Whether it is a quick lap around the neighborhood, or out onto the highway away from the maddening crowds, it untangles my mind. A spontaneous hour long trip to “no-where’s land” could get me contemplating over life’s great mysteries.

My car has become my therapist. I play a good playlist and hum away the blues. I just don’t feel like stopping the vehicle until I feel better. I drive, I think, I imagine….What attracts me the most, is being alone in the car and going places, seldom planned for. My drive on NH 66 was hardly the Arabian coast highway. Yet, I found it exciting and invigorating.

A drive is often my meaningful short escape. What’s yours?

*Featured Image Courtesy: pixabay

Travel to Israel to Experience Happiness, Faith and Life

Travel to Israel to Experience Happiness, Faith and Life

If there is one unique thing that stands out in Israel, it is the diversity the country holds within it. Exuberant in every way, the beautiful people and place seem as though they are all out of a grand epic. Vibrant cultures, traditions, art and culinary that fills your heart with joy. The desert and the sea, together, make it a surreal world for the tourist exploring it.

At the intersection of Asia, Europe and Africa, lies Israel, a congruence of cultures, empires and religions since time immemorial. It bears the cradle of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. One can immerse oneself in the holy land and in its rich religious traditions.

  • Jerusalem- the cradle of the world’s three biggest religions

Truly Jerusalem serves as the landmark for the three biggest religions of the world. It has the great Western Wall. An important shrine, this Jewish site was initially a retaining wall supporting the outer portion of Temple Mount, upon which stood the Second Temple. Although the Temple was destroyed, its retaining structure remained and rabbinical texts maintain that the Shechina (divine presence) never deserted it.

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Jerusalem is also famous for its Byzantine-era synagogues adorned with sumptuous mosaics. Synagogues around the Sea of Galilee attract a lot of tourists. The sites are of importance as they are associated with the birth of Jesus (Bethlehem) and the crucifixion site. Mecca and Medina is Holy for the Muslims. The Dome of the Rock is yet another masterpiece and an enduring symbol of the city. It is covered by a slab of stone sacred to both the Muslim and Jewish Faiths.

That’s how magnificent Jerusalem is!

  • Tel Aviv- The vibrant city with tourists thronging it through the year.

Did you know Tel Aviv is often referred to as the party capital of the Middle East?

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Tel Aviv is a multicultural mix of people, cultures, and cuisines. You would find sky scrapers that adorn the beautiful skyline, neatly laid out bike paths, cafes and bistros with vibrant young and beautiful people. The sultry Mediterranean climate and the sea with its lashing waves make it an ideal place for a happening night life. The shores of the sea are a witness every night to the young and old alike, tourists and locals, who party till the break of dawn. It’s no surprise Tel Aviv is known as the party capital of the Middle East.

Tel Aviv also houses the world’s major centers of high-tech venture capital, the century-old city earned UNESCO World Heritage status by virtue of its 1930s-style Bauhaus architecture.

  • The Dead Sea- Truly one of the wonders of the world

The Dead Sea on the Israeli shore could be considered as the largest spa in the world. It is a must visit, as it lets you soak up the sun while you lie flat and float in the water. The sea is serene surrounded by mountains and hills, adding to its scenic beauty.

Sat Crystals, Floating and spa

The sea water rejuvenates your entire body and mind.  With the Dead Sea mud mask and salts, you could detox the body, increase your circulation, improve the skin texture and cure those aches and pains. Many tourists spend hours on the beach floating on the sea and benefiting from the rich minerals in both the mud and the salts.

  •  Cuisine- Surely you must have them and savor the unique flavors

Israeli food has some really distinct tastes and flavors. They greatly differ from European or Western food, but have a strong resemblance to many Asian and North African cuisine. Yet, with its own distinct signature taste.

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Something, which should definitely not be given a miss. Must tries are surely the Falafel – the king of Israeli food. It is a delicious mix of chickpeas and fava beans, along with the use of some generous spices. The Hummus is a kind of dip or spread made from crushed chickpeas and mixed with tehina sauce, lemon, olive oil, salt and garlic.  The Shakshooka is yet another fantastic Israeli food is a liquid dish made up of tomatoes, onions, plenty of garlic, and spices such as sweet paprika.

Israel – A Great Destination for Indian Tourists? Of course it is….

A country with a modern lifestyle and experiences, Israel is truly a great holiday destination from India. The country offers a lot more and caters to budget travellers, backpackers, and family holidays too. The weather is moderate and definitely enjoyable by Indian travellers. Tel Aviv is the coolest city in the Mediterranean. One can also travel to Gulf Countries, after having a Israel visa stamp on their passport. 

Israel is a perfect blend of faith, of life, of happy people, of a great lifestyle, culinary experiences, and much more. The country is safer than most western countries and a holiday would be worth every bit. From serenity to diversity, from religion and history to architecture, you get it all in one single land which is Israel. So go for it!!!

The Ghost Town Of India- Kuldhara, Rajasthan

The Ghost Town Of India- Kuldhara, Rajasthan


Indian Bloggers

About 20 odd kilometers from the desert town of Jaisalmer lies Kuldhara. As I took to the dusty road that led to this ancient town of Rajasthan, I noticed the scant presence of humans around. The sun was at its fiery best and an unusual silence prevailed. I reached Kuldhara, eerie and desolate. I had heard it had been abandoned by its people more than 200 years ago.

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The Abondened Village

 I spotted a few villagers grazing goats nearby. What really was the story of Kuldhara?

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Jeetendar and Ramesh- Boys from the neighbouring Manpiya village who served as my guide

For a paltry amount of Rs. 10/- two little boys came up to me to narrate the tale. It seemed Salim Singh the Minister of the Kingdom; fell in love with a girl from the village. He was absolutely obstinate that he wanted to marry her, and if the villagers came in his way, he would levy huge taxes on them. Overnight the entire village abandoned their homes and fled. No one knows where they went. And before they left, a curse was placed by them on Kuldhara that no one will ever be able to settle in their village thereafter.

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The Stretch of Eeriness

Probably the curse stays true till date; cause the town still remains barren and uninhabited. The houses remain intact in the same way it had been left behind by its inhabitants.

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