Sitting in his balcony and sipping hot tea, Paras, a businessman dealing in medicines gives a gentle smile to his newly wedded wife. I, an old friend decided to have a tete e tete with him on his first love – travelling.
Raised in hustling bustling Ghaziabad (adjacent to Delhi), Paras knew that he would not spend his entire life in simply managing medicines. There was more to life than just paying bills, taxes, liabilities and scores of other responsibilities. My objective of writing this interview is to encourage young and old towards their dreams, and passion. Here, it goes:
When did the travel bug bit you?
I guess I was born with the bug itself (gently laughs). Till I grew up, I only went around with my family and in a protected environment, I explored places. It was 2008, when I went to Mysore to meet my friend and check out the city. It was then when I had this inclination to travel, travel and travel. After that, I decided and started making plans for my travels. To be honest, there was no looking back since then.
Which all places have you been till now? And which one was the most memorable one?
I have explored entire Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, West Bnegal and other few. I checked out all temples and historical places like 7 Jyotirlinga, 4 Dhams etc. I have had the privilege to take holy dip (Shahi snaan) at Maha Kumbh Mela and I travel to Kolkata every year for Durga puja. Outside India, I have been to places like Bali, Singapore, Jakarta, Corsica and Paris. I did road trip that was like Ghaziabad-Varanasi-Kolkata-Bhutan-Gorakhpur-Ghaziabad. Another road trip of mine was Ghaziabad-Ladakh-Srinagar-Ghaziabad. In Corsica, I explored via a self driven car. They are all memorable but my stint at Everest Base Camp and Nepal has been the most vivid one.
Wohooo! Your experience gives me goosebumps. I can sniff a blend of adventure in you. Tell me about the experience at Everest.
I wonder, if I have the adjectives to express! I still remember, I was standing at the Advance Base Camp of the world’s highest mountain. What else could I ask for? I was almost in tears and never imagined that I could be this daring. How many of us think being at such a point, at such a height and live a dream like that? While trekking, I was almost one with nature especially mountains. I walked on frozen river and climbed diagonally on frozen waterfall. I trekked from 9000 ft to 17000 ft with consistently decreasing Oxygen level. When you physically exert to this level, you are too tired but the charm of living away from city life in camps is worth it. I was able to know about the Sherpa culture that is the common habitat there and it is worth experiencing.
I can very well feel the ultimate experience you had. But why adventure of all?
Adventurous trips and travels build up the strength in me. I get to tackle life threatening scenarios in such situations, and with this, I only get stronger to meet other hazards in life. When I am close to nature, I feel I get a little more mature.
And why religious traveling? It is rare to find a young man these days who loves to visit religious places.
(Gentle laugh) I explore religious places because it makes me believe in me being a human. It’s an essence. On the other hand, I love knowing about the background of a certain religious place or a shrine, anything. If you start digging out, you will get to know interesting stories of each place, trust me. I am amused that there are certain beliefs and myths absolutely unbelievable but our countrymen believe in them.
No wonder! Ok, tell me about your family’s take on your adventure and religious trips?
Supportive in one word! As a matter of fact, when I was about to start my Everest Base Camp, I had second thoughts. But, my parents inculcated courage in me and said that I should cast away fear. They claimed that I will overcome all hassles and come out like a winner. And I did. When I returned, not only did I receive a grand reception from family but also from some senior and distinctive people in the city. Accolades came flooding via news papers, social media and phone calls. Let me tell you, my newly wedded wife is also my partner in crime rather travel.
Is it possible to make a career in traveling?
If one is wanderlust then why not? Anybody who travels can tie up with local tour operators and trekking companies. Also, one can make connections and bring up guides from villages or inhabitant areas for travelers. Anybody who loves traveling can develop connections and understand where he can earn his brownie points. This calls for lot of research as well.
What should a traveler keep in mind while going on any adventure trip?
Let me brief that in points:
- Handy cash as virtual money and cards may not work in all places
- Listen and follow the guide on a mandatory basis
- Carry dry fruits for cooler regions (for energy and warmth) and Camphor for high altitude places (they help in smooth breathing)
- Comfortable clothes as per the location
- Passion, and determination
What kind of adventure activities would you recommend?
- Bungee jumping
- Everest Base Camp
- Scuba diving
- Cave hunting
- Road trips
What would you suggest to the generation coming that loves to travel?
LIVE YOUR DREAMS! Be a traveler and never a tourist. Try to go out of your comfort zone and explore this planet before it succumbs to human beings. It is beautiful and amazing. Cheers!
In case you want to reach out to Paras, take the following details:
Phone no. 9811414159
Email ID: firstname.lastname@example.org
Paras is also taking care of Travel and Treks (you can find it on Facebook) where he assists in bookings and other activities.
Email ID: email@example.com