I had jotted down this post after my first solo cycling and camping trip from Berlin to Copenhagen. This was after many months of that trip – so I am not talking about the euphoria right after the trip. In fact right after the trip, I was heartbroken because I didn’t want to stop the cycle touring or camping at all. And I felt bleak because in India I don’t have adequate infrastructure or social situation to go on such trips.
I am publishing this post now, because I have a whole second level post that jumps a whole new level. But that post is still in making. I need to articulate first, then write and then publish. The changes that happened after my second cycling trip to Australia, Taiwan and Tamil Nadu were a whole different gear.
But for now….. this…. 🙂
Brings a smile to my face, often in tough times
The idea is simple. Procure a cycle – 2nd hand, borrow, beg or buy brand new awesome one – plan a trip to any first world country (not US, though it may not be as bad as I think) and cycle through the empty, usually safer roads with tonnes of solitude to myself. Remembering my Europe cycling trip does that – it brings a smile to my face. Even my other travel experiences contribute but this one has been probably the most impactful one. Whatever trouble may be brewing outside, in my mind I can almost experience those long, open, countryside roads and the soft sound my cycle wheels make as they move onwards! It is easy to smile and actually feel happy from within.
This was the blog written right after the trip: Experiences with Long Term Value
I know that in a certain context this is considered a bad thing, like “you didn’t think before doing this, did you?” But there is also another context, where the mind is truly without thought. Often it happens in moments of utter calm, awesome beauty or some such experience. The cycling trip, 17 days of being on the road – solo, cycling… makes me thoughtless for a while. Just empty mind… and the surrounding solitude. 🙂
I can’t wait to get back on the road. More outdoorsy, more on my own. There is a certain style of packing, carrying stuff with me, being prepared for situations and such aspects which are more prominent in me.
There is a deep calm feeling in me that makes me also feel more settled. For the next so many months I have been deeply involved with my work and general family/personal life. I am planning longer trips later but overall feeling a lot settled. And so you know, I have never had this ‘settled’ feeling before. I always felt unsettled and unsatisfied and this caused a lot of irritation and unease in life.
So if you are looking as to Why you should be doing this. Or why I do this. It is because it brings solutions to life. You know those stupid little irritations, problems, holes in your heart type of things that are part and parcel of most urban people’s lives? This fills them up. This brings solutions. That’s why.
And for me all of this happens ONLY because of a deep spirituality and Yoga at the core of my heart. I am making it a point to mention this because of a certain political climate that is developing – a certain section of urban India seems to think that Yoga and Spirituality is only a political gimmick.
It is only through Yoga and Spirituality that even a modicum of sense has trickled into my life. And a culture of growth, of health, of happiness has been established in my life. And these are invaluable. It is only through that culture that I even thought of and managed such a trip. Otherwise the trappings of a more ‘normal’ trip are very strong, to slip them completely and to plan this out was actually easy with Yoga in my heart. 🙂