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It’s nearly two years that I gave up my business. I had worked arduously for 9 years, establishing my fashion business from selling jeweled scarfs to bridal wear. Being a sole proprietor brings along with it huge responsibilities and I took it upon myself to be involved in every teeny-weeny aspect of it. Like a juggler ensures a throw and a catch of hats with fluidity and dexterity, I juggled with designing, client meetings, sourcing fabrics, booking exhibitions, traveling to different cities, setting up stalls, despatching consignments, handling accounts, taxes, salaries and more. Phew! I had become like a machine, working non-stop. I would often wake up in the middle of the night and start working at 3 a.m. Eventually, the feeling of missing out in life started to sink in. There was no time to socialize or meet friends. I lost various opportunities to travel with Sam. I had bought my own car and my bank account was smiling. But the fatigue was filling in and life was passing by.

By mid-2016, I decided to close my work. Sam gave me all the support. It was an emotional time of my life to let go of all my tailors and karigars. They had been a part of my life for so long and to see them leave, tore me apart. For those who believe in astrology will tell you that shifts in the constellations bring changes in our lives. Perhaps, mine too were changing.

Once life settled in its new point of equilibrium, I finally found time to smell the proverbial roses. I always enjoyed writing and I found myself filling up the pages of my diary. Traveling became a part of my life and I became fascinated with different cuisines, cultures, and people. Friends and bloggers like Rohan Sonalkar and Anindya Basu pushed me further to start documenting my experiences. Blogging gave me the platform to unleash these experiences and expressions for the world to read. I could share my stories and connect with an audience. Finally a year ago, my blog was born.

Why do I love blogging?

Interactions with people all over the world

Any traveler will tell you that the world is one large family. I have traveled to 20 countries and found love and friendships in whichever place I have traveled. On our way to the Elephant Sanctuary, in Chiang Mai, I started talking to a couple of Spanish girls. By the time we returned back, after a day of feeding and bathing the elephants, we had formed a camaraderie such that till today we converse on WhatsApp.

Friendships made in Chiang Mai

On our trip to Nepal, Sam and I got stuck in the middle of nowhere. We walked up the dusty road until we came to a wedding function. The women welcomed us to their homes and helped us find our way back.

I have chatted with chefs, shared a meal with strangers, formed friendships, learned their stories and shared mine. Blogging has given me enough experiences to understand people better.

I can blog from anywhere

This month was the #MyFriendAlexa month with Blogchatter. Registering for this requires dedication and commitment. A blogger has to complete a set of readings a day, interact with other bloggers and submit two posts minimum every week. I traveled to 2 countries, 6 cities and gave two theatre performances. In the midst of traveling and rehearsals, I managed to complete the assigned tasks given and release my posts as scheduled. Blogging gives the flexibility to choose my timings and place of work.

It’s all about scribbling notes and photography for my blog – in Ayutthaya

While blogging may come across as a simple journal where one can pen down his/her thoughts, in reality, it is a responsibility to provide meaty content to the readers else its purpose is ruined. Each time I’m invited for a review, I study about the cuisine, talk to chefs, learn more about the ingredients, read as many books as I can lay my hands on.

A bit of Goa on my plate – A meal cooked by Chef Edridge Vaz in Taj Gurugram.

The traditional way of serving a meal in Bali.

I learn about different cultures and people

Blogging takes me to different places where I learn about different cultures, about people and their beliefs and habits.

The devotees in Vrindavan stamp the words “Radhe Radhe,” using sandalwood paste, on their faces.

The dresses that are worn by the indigenous tribes in Chiang Mai.

It is all about unusual experiences, exotic locations, and remote places

As the taxi driver drove from Lucknow to Kanpur, he casually mentioned a temple on the outskirts of Kanpur which was known to predict monsoons one month prior to its arrival. Raindrops would accumulate and based on the size of the raindrops, the villagers estimated the extent to which it would rain. Surprisingly, the years when the raindrops were not formed, there was a spell in the village. Scientists had done investigative research but with no results. I was intrigued and instantly searched the internet for the location. There was not one article to give the information. With only a  couple of YouTube channels giving a vague location, I took a taxi the next day and found myself in an ancient, beautiful Jagganath temple. To know more, read here.

A walk on the Cliffs Of Moher, a cruise on the River Nile, walking underwater in Goa, snorkeling in the Maldives, dancing in front of the Great Sphinx or cockfighting in Bali make excellent memories. My blog becomes a journal and information center for all these experiences.

Sometime to myself – Cliffs of Moher

Cockfighting is illegal in Bali yet every village has these events. A bit gory where one cock literally rips apart the weaker cock, its a man’s game. An unusual experience, I sat through this one.

Learning new skills 

Blogging is far more complex than writing a journal. It must include meaty content, should be well edited and include images or infographics. It’s my inherent nature to constantly learn. I love learning something new every day. Blogging is dynamic and fulfills that need of mine. Since I started blogging I am continuously learning every day whether it’s photography, photo processing or content writing,

Dilli Ki Dibbi

Had it not been for blogging, I would have never known the art, architecture, and food of Delhi in its entirety. At the advent of the year, I started Project “Dilli Ki Dibbi” in which I visited Baolis, monuments, museums and food places in Delhi for 100 days. I explored my city day after day. Delhi is vast and is steeped in history. There is so much still left to explore. When I’m not traveling, I’m exploring the city I call home.

Events and Blogger meet-ups

The blogosphere is the world where we bloggers belong. We are constantly on the lookout for stories, material, and content for the viewers. Blogger meetups provide a medium for interactions and learning. The blogging community leans on each other for support and discussions. Events are great places to attend cook-offs, get tips, learn more about food, wine or places. Interactions and watching the chefs help me gain insights into the methods and style of cooking.

Do you blog? What are your reasons for blogging?

AUTHOR’S NOTE:

This post is a part of #MyFriendAlexa challenge. It’s an endeavor to bring interesting stories, places, food and places to the readers. I am taking my Alexa rank to the next level with blogchatter.

 

 

 

 

 

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