Bucket-list 2013 week 29 – Swim at the fake beach in Brisbane

Hello Everyone,

It was a nice experience I must say to see this man made beach in Brisbane. Loved the location right next to the Brisbane river in the centre of tge city. And this closes item 37th on my bucket list as well.

Here is a link for my bucket list if you haven’t read it yet.

My Promise to live life – My BucketList 2013

A little bit different and another post about the fears I have in my life with a reflection of other reader’s experiences along with it.

My Fears

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Whitest Beach in the world – Awesome way to spend weekend

Whiteheaven is one of the whitest beach in the world. So if you are in Sydney then try to go to Whitsundays and from there you can sail to Whiteheaven, Hamilton and many beautiful islands. The closest mainland area is Airle Beach and you can get there from Sydney in 1 hour by flight. Or you can choose to fly to Mackay which is bit cheaper and take greyhound bus to Airle Beach. The bus only runs once in a day each way so plan accordingly. It was a hectic trip due to less number of days but it was an amazing experience. I would share some more tips and details of my trip in the next post. And more pics from the Daydream island where I spend half of my day eating good lunch n relaxing near the pool bar so stay tuned 🙂

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Bucket-List 2013 Week 27 – Ricky Martin concert in Sydney

Hello Everyone,

It was a nice experience I must say to listen to Ricky last night, live in Sydney during his gig. Loved the energy level of people n the whole atmosphere. Here are some snaps from my evening. And this closes item 5 on my bucket list as well. I might be able to upload some videos soon as well.

Here is a link for my bucket list if you haven’t read it yet.

My Promise to live life – My BucketList 2013

A little bit different and another post about the fears I have in my life with a reflection of other reader’s experiences along with it.

My Fears

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Bucket-List 2013 Week 25 – 25.Visit atleast one historical town in Australia (Armidale)

Hello My Lovely Fellow Bloggers,

A smile and hug from Sydney. I had an amazing weekend this time like many others and I am back to share some stories and experience with you including my bucketlist adventure. Here is a link for my bucket list if you haven’t read it yet.

My Promise to live life – My BucketList 2013

A little bit different and another post about the fears I have in my life with a reflection of other reader’s experiences along with it.

My Fears

This time I had a wonderful time in a city called Armidale, located in the northern tableland in New South Wales, Australia. It has population of around 25,000 people and is known as one of the higest city in Australia at 1,110 meter above sea level. It is a beautiful area covered by world heritage national parks and it has also got an airport at 1,084 metres (3,556 ft), the highest licensed airport in New South Wales. It is 5 hours 30 minutes drive from Sydney, but I don’t drive so I caught the Greyhound bus in the evening from Central, Sydney to get here. It is a bit cold in Armidale due to it’s high location hence it is advisable to carry few warm clothes usually.

I think this is one of the most relaxed and happy weekend I had for quiet a while. And as I look back, I feel that the time I had spent here in this little town was blissful. Why do I feel blissful? A number of things happened on my trip to Armidale this weekend and I was content and happy after such a wonderful weekend with few  hiccups. I left Sydney around 5:30 PM on Friday evening when everyone was getting in the party mood in the city. People were leaving work on time or even early to start feeling Friday fever. I was in the bus waiting to get out of the city and get a snooze before I arrive in Armidale at 2:30 AM in the morning. It was a nice bus ride where I met this French couple who were spending their honeymoon travelling around the world for 6 months. What an awesome way to celebrate I must say. I love meeting people from different culture as you can see and we instantly hit it off and shared a lot of experiences from past travelling. I was lucky to get the next seat free in the bus as it was enough for me to curl up and get some sleep on my way to Armidale. As this was the first time I was going there so I checked quiet a few times with the driver about where we were and that made him wonder why I might be going to this little town where he himself hadn’t been for ages. Anyways finally I was there. The moment I left the bus a wave of cold air took me by surprise. It was around -2.0 C which I was not quiet prepared to be honest and the warm clothes I was carrying were mainly for the bus in case the AC was too low which sometimes is the case when you take a bus. But I was very glad that I did have few warm clothes and I tried to wear all of them to make myself more comfortable in this cold night.

I met some locals and made some really good friends I must say. It was just such a nice trip if I look back.  I went for a walk/run to enjoy the atmosphere and that took me to the University of New England in Armidale, where there was some function taking place. Then I also visited the city and the Dangar waterfall that is 20 minutes drive from Armidale, a very serene place. There are few other nice places to visit that I didn’t get a chance to go but worth seeing if you have few days in Armidale:

• Oxley Wild RIvers Nationalpark
• Zoology Museum
• Museum of Antiquities
• New England Regional Art Museum
• Hillgrove Museum
• Cathedral Rock National Park
• Dangars Lagoon and Racecourse Lagoon
• Deeargee Woolshed
• Eastview Estate Winery
• Geraldine 4WD Recreation Park
• Mount Mutton Walking Trail
• Mount Yarrowyck Nature Reserve
• Thunderbolts Rock
• Uralla Heritage Walk
• Wollomombi Falls – This is one of the highest fall in Australia. Wollomombi Falls are located less than one kilometre south of the village of Wollomombi and approximately two and a half kilometres by road. The access turn off is one and a half kilometres from Wollomombi on the Waterfall Way towards Armidale.

Spices and their benefits

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Very often I get this question – What is this spice useful for? Being Indian we do use a lot of different kind of spices for taste and health benifits but most of the times I used to remember the taste and not the other reasons I would use them. Hence I have come up with a list of spices and their benifits so that if you like then you can try them and change the quality and taste of the food.

 Enjoy a spicy day my friends 🙂

Black pepper Improve Digestion and Promote Intestinal Health
Basil DNA Protection Plus Anti-Bacterial Properties
Tumeric It helps deal with skin problems. Turmeric powder can be used for healing cuts and wounds. It also makes coping with diabetes easier.
Chile Pepper Fight Inflammation, Natural Pain Relief, Cardiovascular Benefits, Clear Congestion, Boost Immunity, Help Stop the Spread of Prostate Cancer, Prevent Stomach Ulcers, Lose Weight, Lower Risk of Type 2 Diabetes 
Cayenne Pepper Fight Inflammation, Natural Pain Relief, Cardiovascular Benefits, Clear Congestion, Boost Immunity, Help Stop the Spread of Prostate Cancer, Prevent Stomach Ulcers, Lose Weight, Lower Risk of Type 2 Diabetes 
Asafoetida (Hing) Remedy for whooping cough and stomach ache caused due to gas.
Bay leaf (Tez Patta) Bay leaf oil possesses antifungal and anti bacterial
Cardamom (Elaichi) Helps to control bad breath and digestive disorder. A whole cardamom chewed is good for coping with diabetes.
Chilli (Lal Mirch) The antioxidants present in chilli help to cope with cholesterol. It also helps burning calories
Cinnamon (Dalchini) It supports natural production of insulin and reduces blood cholesterol, the highest anti-oxidant strength of all the food sources in nature
Clove (Laung) Clove oil is beneficial for coping with tooth ache and sore gums. It is also beneficial remedy for chest pains, fever, digestive problems, cough and cold.
Coriander (Dhaniya) It can be used externally on aching joints and rheumatism. It is also good for coping with soar throat, allergies, digestion problems, hay fever etc
Cumin (Zeera) It is a good source or iron and keeps immune system healthy. Water boiled with cumin seeds is good for coping with dysentery.
Curry leaves(Curry Patta) These leaves are beneficial for reducing blood sugar. Each part of the plant provides some benefit or the other. The dried leaves are extensively used in herbal medicines.
Fenugreek (Methi) Fenugreek seed tea or sweet fudge is good for increasing breast milk. It also helpful for treating diabetes and lowering cholesterol
Garlic (Lassan) It is useful for coping with cough and cold. It also has antibiotic properties.
Ginger (Adrak) Helps to avoid digestive problems. It is beneficial for coping with cough and cold.
Mustard (Rye) Mustard oil is good for body massage and even for getting good hair. It consists of omega-3 fatty acids. It is an excellent source of iron, zinc, manganese, calcium, protein etc.
Nutmeg (Jaiphal) It is beneficial for the treatments of asthma, heart disorder and bad breath.
Pepper (Kaali Mirch) It helps coping with cold, cough, infections etc. It helps to deal with muscle pains and digestive problems
Saffron (Zaffran/Kesar) It helps to cope with skin diseases. It is a good remedy for cough, cold and asthma.
Star anise (Chakra Phool) Star anise oil is beneficial for rheumatism. It is helpful for digestion and avoiding bad breath
Nutmeg anti-oxidant, disease preventing, and health promoting properties, vital B-complex vitamins, including vitamin C, folic acid, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin A and many flavonoid anti-oxidants like beta-carotene and cryptoxanthin
Mustard seeds rich in phyto-nutrients, minerals, vitamins and anti-oxidants, B-complex vitamins, niacin (vitamin B-3), vitamin E, gamma tocopherol, minerals. Calcium, manganese, copper, iron, selenium and zinc

Bucket-List 2013 Week 23 – Jetpack Adventure (Walk on water)

Hello My Lovely Fellow Bloggers,

A big hug to all from me. I had an amazing weekend this time like many others I have had since I have started this bucket-list for this year. And I am back to share some more adventure with you. Here is a link for my bucket list if you haven’t had a look yet.

My Promise to live life – My BucketList 2013

A little bit different and another post about the fears I have in my life with a reflection of other reader’s experiences along with it.

My Fears

You must be wondering what did I do this item, which item did I cross off from my big list. So here you go.

Item Number #35 – Jetpack Adventure (Link to the website in Australia – http://www.jetpackadventures.com.au/)

It was such a lovely day even though I was a little bit tired after my trip to Armidale (a historical little city in Australia). But I was all set to fly over the water today. Yes you are right fly like a super woman. I was thrilled to be able to complete all my fantasies since I was a child and it was going to be true today. Yaaay….so here I was sitting near the lake and getting ready for the ride. I had watched a different version of this sport on TV (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHL16av4C9k) few months ago and since then I was imagining how amazing it would be if I could ever do it. Video of my adventure would be sent to me in a week’s time hence I would post it then and till then here are some pics for you guys.

I was a bit nervous when Jess, from JetPack Adventure team, told me that I need to learn to flip as I would usually fall on the water face down. It wasn’t very good to know that I would be trying to flip when I had no mask on with the possibility to breathe underwater. But I was so thankful for this life saving technique as on my first go I was flipping quiet a few times after falling straight into the water from almost 10 feet high. Anyways I got all dressed up… in the wetsuit of course and a life jacket just in case. Also as there were no boots available for my size so I had to make sure I walk to the deeper end of the lake a bit carefully as it can be a bit rough with the small rocks around. And then Simon, from the Jetpack Adventure, told me the various techniques to control the direction I would be flying today. Everyone in the team was so supportive and funny that even falling in the water and crashing on my first go didn’t look very bad really.

Yes, I crashed badly after lifting from the water on my first go. A though crossed my mind – ‘it ain’t looking good why the hell you have to do this.’ But then another thought said – ‘ You are not a quitter and if others can do it then so can you’. There comes the power of willingness and I was ready to give it another go. This time again I crashed back into the water. Greg was on the jetski and was worried and asked Simon not to worry about the video and other things but help me to lift from the water first. I was a bit more nervous now as I thought it was simple but no every little movement of my body was putting me out of balance really and then I would crash into the water again. But then it happened, I lifted from the water successfully on my third go and I flew for some time. Then again as the controls were new to me so I fell back into the water i the middle of the lake. Greg was very kind and patient with me and I can’t believe how much confidence boost he gave me really. Towards the end of my introductory flight I was a bit better I would say and very tired as well. I must have drunk a litre of water that time. Then I had a break for a while before going for my next flight.

I flew nicely on my second flight. It was so much better the next time and I was squealing with joy and excitement in the sky. I even tried to fly with my hands wide open and twisting and turning my body weight for a while as suggested by Simon. Then it got even better on  my third and last flight and this time Greg even said that I am flying like a professional. Of course he was being very nice to me but I did fly with not many hiccups this time and I was smooth with control and mainly I was going where I wanted this time and not being dragged from the power of the jetpack this time. I felt amazing and I even glided in the air and above the water like some super hero. It was one of the best experience so far I had I felt. The power to be able to fly and control your movement with your own will. And Greg gave some extra boost for my flights to make sure I can have as much fun as I wanted. It was such a wonderful day that made me want it even more. I might go back there some day in future as summer is coming and these kind of sports are always welcome to enjoy the water as well as the thrill involved with them. Next time I might even go for a flyboard (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHL16av4C9k) I guess 😉 Also the good news is that even kids can do it as Tandem flight (strapped with the professionals).

So till my next adventure stay tuned with my blog and a lot more to come till the year-end when I would be flying to Los Angles and Miami for an amazing new year.

Bucket-List 2013 Week 22 – Complete Advanced Scuba diving course

 

 

Hello My Lovely Bloggers,

A big hug to all from me. I had an amazing few month since I have started this bucket-list for this year. And I am back to share some more adventure with you. You know I have 50 items of all sorts of things on my bucket list for 2013. Here is also a link for the same if you haven’t had a look.

My Promise to live life – My BucketList 2013

A little bit different and another post about the fears I have in my life with a reflection of other reader’s experiences along with it.

My Fears

You must be wondering what did I do this item, which item did I cross off from my big list. So here you go.

 

Diving in the Great Barrier Reef

Item Number #43 – Complete Advanced Scuba diving course

It was not until I was reading my own bucket list, I had time to think about diving for a while. Then I saw this item on my list – Advanced open water course in diving. Suddenly I realised it’s time to learn some thing more in diving and get back to water after a while. It was such a nice feeling to think about the course and it made it easier to get up early in the morning on the weekend to get to Manly which is a train and a ferry away (almost 1.5 hours) from me. I was there all excited except one fact in my mind. I had recently watched the movie – Open Water, where this couple was left in the ocean after diving by mistake and that actually made me a bit sceptical about this sport now. So I asked the instructor in the diving company to make sure that he remembers to bring me back. Everyone laughed at first but then I did explain the reason behind my worry. I don’t mind dying one day but if I do die for some stupid reason then it won’t be fun really and there is so much to see before getting eaten alive by sharks or die due to cold in water really.

So here I was back into the ocean and on our first dive. It was so bumpy on the way as the weather was not in our favour. But somehow the skipper anchored at one place and then we jumped into the water all geared up and after doing the buddy check (the safety check that one does on their buddy in diving as people are paired up generally in diving). We started to decent when the skipper called the instructor and asked to get back the boat as the anchor was being dragged due to the current and it didn’t look like a safe sign. So we came back to the boat and after a while we found another place to do out first dive. I had trouble equalizing today as my ears were blocked. A girl had already dropped out of the course after the first rough encounter with the waves so I was a bit nervous myself. But I couldn’t just give up, specially after 18  dives I had done so far. I was determined to get to the bottom and so I did. It was painful for a while as I felt as if my head would burst . But finally I got better and did the first dive properly. After the first dive we had time for snacks and I have been eating so much lately that it became my favourite time during the dives when we were served hot pies and other Thai snacks. I loved it even though I was a bit suspicious about being too full just before the second dive. But anyways just like the first dive again it was a bit hard today to equalize but fortunately I was able to complete this dive too. Now it was time to get back to the store and go for the night dive. I had never done three dives, all in one day so I was a bit tired but enthusiastic at the same time. And this time I had less weight on me due to the different sizes of weight belts in the store as compared to the boat, hence no matter what I did it was just hard to stay in the bottom and I would just come back to surface all the time. Yes, it’s hard for me to sink…lol. Then the instructor put some more weight in my pocket and then I was able to enjoy rest of my dive with others.

Next day we had to go a bit late for rest of the two dives that included the deep dive. Even though I was on time for the ferry but there were so many people in Sydney harbour today to go to Manly that the ferry was full twice and my heart was almost sinking thinking how am I going to get there now. Fortunately we were able to board the next boat and then I realized the bay I was aiming to reach was no near Manly. I called the store and asked the people there to wait for me so that I can join the group from the store. I took off my footwear and started running barefoot. It was funny as I was the only girl in a nice dress but running barefoot. People kept staring at me but now more important was to get to the store before the group leaves me behind. I got there all huffing and puffing and the instructor even made a joke out of it. But I was so happy as if I had done the course already. And there we go for our next two dives. It was nice and calm water today so not much trouble finding a nice spot in the blue fish point. Even better that I did not have trouble equalizing today. Hence I did descent slowly but effectively today. Then I realized my cylinder was coming off. Wow that was a news now as I didn’t know whether to stop descending or go to the surface but then my instructor asked me to keep going and I felt that he was making sure that my cylinder is still attached to my jacket a little. Then on the bottom (20 meter), he asked me to sit so that he can fix it. So I followed his instruction and he did fixed it. Man that was a bit scary initially as it would have been an emergency ascent in case the cylinder would have come off anyhow.

We all successfully completed both the dives with some snacks. It was a wonderful feeling while coming back thinking about the two days we spent training ourselves and learning about various technical stuff that would be useful in future. Thank you all for your time to read about my weekend and now I have ticked off another item from my list. Hurrah.

Confession Corner

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Hi All,

Greetings from a warm but windy day at my end. Today when I went out then I realized that its a nice and sunny day but you better tuck your clothes in and tie your hair as the wind is going to blow everything away a bit harder this afternoon. But no matter what, summer gives me such joy. I feel like I can open up a little more and no need to curl into myself and be scared of cold. Although it is a very personal choice but I prefer summer most of the times.

So a thought crossed my mind today as I am trying to move towards a heatlhy mind and body these days. Atleast I am trying 🙂 And being a personal trainer I guess I have abused my capabitlities enough by eating much sugar and other fatty stuff. But summer is around the corner so I better get fitter to take a plunge into the beach every now and then. Any ways so what I was thinking is it might be a time when we confess what are the things we do but we want to either get rid of them or atleast don’t want to do in our life.

Here is my list and I am looking forward to hear from you my friend to make sure we are aware of what are the things that make us feel bad or uncomfortable.

  • Loosing anything can make you feel frustated –  (example: I recently lost my umbrella, water bottle and a t-shirt, all in one day even though I never loose a thing) – This incidence made me so cynical for a while that I would not trust myself for anything and do a double or triple check for my stuff all the time. But then it was just a simple fact that I had a long and busy day that day and I just wasn’t present hence all I need to do is accept that I can be forgetful and loosing something is ok and its already past. So use of beating yourself for that. I know I might sound odd here but as I never loose stuff so even this simple thing threw me out of order for sometime.
  • I can’t keep the sweet things for long at home – I am such a sweet tooth that I avoid buying sweets rather than trying unsuccessfully to keep some for long time at home. I have eaten enormous amount of sweets all in one day many times before.
  • I don’t like confronting people in case of any misunderstanding – I tend to avoid close friends or family in case I feel hurt or upset by them. Even though I come across as an extrovert but its very easy for me to lock myself in my room to avoid any encounter with others at times.
  • I become even more serious around people I like – Specially with any guy I like I pretend to be super serious which my flatmate can easily spot now. Even when we are laughing on our way and instantly if I like someone then I go all serious with no smile on face at all. And then she would say oh looks like you liked him. And then what damage is already done as I don’t know how to smile at anyone I instantly like. Funny huh.
  • I find it boring to spend time on make up even though I know it would make a lot of difference – I always plan to change this and try to look pretty every morning but then next thing I know I am putting my sports shoes on with my backpack. And there you go – forget about the barbie doll, its a rough and tough girl leaving the house.
  • I don’t like cooking for myself usually – Although I am trying to cook healthy more and more now so many be this habit might change soon.
  • I am scared of riding a bi-cycle in Sydney as I think I might get killed in the road with no safety – Even though I used to roam in my bike all the time, its odd that I find it so scary now. I might get out there and do it one day.
  • I find it hard to stay silent with a friend – I feel awkward not to talk when around a person I know well. I find the silence very difficult to maintain and get all sorts of odd things popping up in my mind – example: what that person might think if I don’t talk. I have to build a relationship with silence I think as when ever I am not talking then I am thinking otherwise.
  • I spend more money then spending more time to save money at times – I never use credit card as I am usually scared of their safety. Even though this can save me so much money.

some of these can find obvious or very common but I guess at the moment these are the things I could think of. But I would add if I remember some more. So what is your confession for the day?

10 People You Don’t Want To Travel With

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  1. Can never be happy
  2. Complain a lot about something or the other
  3. In-flexible with environment
  4. Extremely moody
  5. Fearful and nervous about everything and anything and scream all the time
  6. Never leave work in office but rather live with it all the time
  7. Party animals and can’t stop drinking
  8. Won’t give a damn to the rules of any new place and would love to live according to what they think is right
  9. No risk-takers – Everything is too dear to risk for them in life
  10. Not ready to learn anything new at any time

Guide to a happy return after travelling

 

Stanwell Park

Stanwell Park

 

I know it sounds almost impossible to be happy when you love travelling and now it is time to go back to your old life with a job and regular day to day life. I have felt this many times and I am sure you have too. But this time when I came back and I knew I can not travel international for rest of the year as I just got a new job and to get my citizenship in this country I might have to be here at least 1.5 years then I wasn’t happy thinking about it. But then as a matter of fact you don’t stop living with so many things in your mind and you have to find a way out. Here are some tips that I would like to share with you that I am using in my day to day life to make my life with not enough travel happier and more content.

  •  It’s never over – You should never think its over as travelling can never finish when you love travelling. Hence it is just a refreshing break from the long or short term travel and time to reflect back with awesome memories till you go back again to some more awesome places.
  • Don’t stop completely – You should still plan some short term or weekend gateway away as that keep the momentum and its always good to get away for a change. That is the very reason you started travelling and even you go to the places you have been before those places would be different for you this time with a completely new perspective.
  • Do something you really love  Sometimes travelling restricts us from doing many things that require to stay at one place or more money when we are not earning. For example: you always wanted to learn dancing or martial arts. This is the time to do it. You love doing these things then do it. No matter whether travelling or dancing makes you happy, doing something you love will make your life so much more happier.
  • Be grateful – Very important rule in life – if you want to be happy then be grateful for what you have and never take any thing for granted. And when I say any thing that means literally anything as many people out there don’t have it and they would be very fortunate to be able to have your life.
  • Make new friends – This you can do everywhere even though when you are travelling you feel more confident meeting new people. But try meeting new people in your own city/town this time as it would make such a big difference.
  • Make the world travel to you – Invite people to visit you. What if you can’t travel but the world can travel to you. Couch surfing is a great way to meet people from around the world. Or you can even join meet-up groups (http://www.meetup.com/) for different interests or age groups.
  • Stop comparing – You are not missing out while others are travelling as you are just taking a break and when others would be back then you would be out on the road. A lot of times we are not unhappy due to our own issues but rather unhappy due to others happiness or activities. Stop comparing as who else is doing what as that will reduce life time of your miseries to be honest. I know its hard but if you think about you have something else which others might not have and you are learning something else in the course of life.
  • Stop being lazy – Now that you are home you don’t get up early anymore even on the weekends as you think travelling was the time you had something to do but now its boring life again. I have started doing tours or things I wasn’t able to do while travelling like – advanced scuba dive course, salsa classes. This gives me a reason to wake up early and go. I wasn’t going to gym for a long time and I find it good to join back and get on the fitness track again before I hit the road again.
  • Indulge yourself into food – You can always try different cuisines even in your home country. Or at least you can try cooking for a change if you like. I put this thing in my bucket list try 10 different new cuisines and guess what, I got introduced to some amazing flavours that I never knew exists before.
  • Friends gathering – You miss to meet friends when you are away and even when I am travelling more domestic on weekends I miss my friends so I make a point to meet each one of them when I am back. That way I am in touch with them and its always something happening to keep me busy.
  • Learn something new – You can always learn something new. Either it’s a new language or new skill. You would have more money and time to dedicate yourself to learn these things when you are back and before you go on travelling again. It will even enrich your experience when you travel next with all these new learning’s as well.
  • Plan  – You can always plan where and how you want to travel in new future. One of the best thing about travelling is to look forward to travel and you can always maintain it with the plans and discussion around your travelling. I am excited even after just having thought of going to South America next year with my friends. Its always gives you a reason to smile and something to look forward to.

Sand Boarding in Port Stephen and Dolphin Cruise in Nelson Bay after encountering few animals

It was hard to wake up on Saturday morning as I am not a morning person usually. But after looking at those flowers and kangaroos in the Wildlife park it felt so worth. And no, even before that I remember now when I left home and got to the main street, I spotted many riders on their bikes. It was nice to see so much happening in the morning. It was so motivating to see so many people up and on their way to a fresh start of the day. I think I have started considering to be a morning person. Although the only issue is that I don’t sleep early and then it becomes even harder to get up early. But I guess I am going to make a way in that direction too. But anyways coming to the point I had planned a tour this Saturday to Nelson Bay, Port Stephen. It is a few hours drive north from Sydney and I had heard a lot about the sand dunes there so here I was heading to the beautiful view from the sand dunes – one of the longest in Australia next to the beautiful beach. We made a quick stop at the wildlife park and I did feed some Kangaroos there. It was such a beautiful start of the morning. Then next thing I knew we were walking around Nelson Bay and getting some food before boarding this big boat called ‘Moonshadow’. Then soon we were on the way to spot some dolphins. We did get a chance to see some of them but not so close as I did see them last weekend in Jarvis Bay. Here are some pics if you want to look at them from my last trip.

Hang Gliders and Dolphins

Then after coming back from the cruise we headed to ride some sand 🙂 It was so scary to look at the high Sand dunes let alone thinking about riding them. But then I saw so many people going to the top of the sand dunes with a board that I got tempted with my camera mounted on my head – all determined to take chance and try this new adventure. And as I am not used to of slopes and last time I tried a new sport I did suffer from concussion (Concussion couldn’t stop me from skiing – Pain is temporary, but if I quit then it will last forever) , not that I am complaining but it was just a moment of fear for me when I sat there at the top with my board just looking down and thinking why the hell I even have to do this. Then after few minutes it all looked good and something happened in my mind and a voice said just go and there I was doing sand boarding. And after once it became like a second nature to get up and walk back with my board to the highest possible place and slide down. It was so much fun and yes I shouted as loud as possible to emphasis on how much fun I had doing this. I missed it the most when we left in a 4 wheel drive to get back to our tour bus. And I think I might go back one day to try it again as it is a lot of fun and if you haven’t tried then I recommend it to adrenalin junkies and adventure lovers.

Bucket-List 2013 Week 18 – Watch an open air cinema

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Item Number #42 – Watch an open air cinema

I always wanted to watch open air cinema hence I changed an item on my bucket list ‘Sleep in luxury with animals at the zoo or sleep in a wartime bunker’ with this. As I realized when I was trying to fit 50 things in my bucket list that time I had to add some random things to increase the number even though I wasn’t quiet keen on those. Hence with time I have changed few of the items on my bucket list to fit something I really wanted to do but didn’t think about it while collating the list.

So yes I was able to complete this bucketlist item when I was in Darwin and I watched an awesome movie ‘Crocodile Dundy’ in this place of crocodiles. It was an amazing experience in the warm night under the stars. Here is a snippet from my day in Darwin – Place to relax and enjoy Crocodile Dundy

Bucket-List 2013 Week 20 – Write 50 poems

Item Number #45 – Write 50 poems

It was one of the other items that I replaced that was watching cricket as I realized that I don’t even like Cricket much. Yes, it sounds odd being an Indian that I don’t like this game. But I am more of an individual sports person and specially racing like bike racing, horse racing, car racing etc. So finally here I am with more than 35 poems at hand. I am glad that I did make it a bucket list option as since then I could not stop writing poems and some people even felt they might have gone to a wrong website after seeing all these poems all of a sudden.

I have written poems before but in my own native language – Hindi. And I was not sure whether I would be able to connect to people when writing in English or not. Because writing an article is different from composing a poem and you need to feel it inside to be able to write and express yourself. And what can I say – your love and appreciation did make me compose some of the best poems of my life I had ever thought of.  ‘I miss myself when I miss you’  was one of them.

Good News! I have published a book for my collection of poems. Here is the link for the same.

Life as Talking Experience

I hope you enjoy reading them. Please let me know how you liked it. And yes one more thing my name (Kavita) also means the poem. Have a lovely day friends!

Here is also a link for my bucket list for 2013 if you haven’t had a look. My Promise to live life – My BucketList 2013

A little bit different and also another post about the fears I have in my life with a reflection of other reader’s experiences along with it. My Fears

Hang Gliders and Dolphins with some Ice Cream – All in one day made it a Happy Day

Apologies first of all for not writing here my friends. It was one hell of a week with some sad times when evening were spent locked away in my room first time in a year. I did need a good weekend and guess what I did get one and here are some snaps from one of those days from my wonderful weekend.

I booked this tour some time back as since I was back from Darwin and India it was getting a bit boring to stay home doing nothing and here I was away for a day tour to explore more of my own surroundings in Sydney. It was a tour to Jervis Bay that I had always wanted to do. It included sightseeing to Stanwell Park, Kiama Beach, Jervis Bay and Kangaroo Valley. So much in one tour, I know right.

I had already been to first two but visiting again was refreshing as well. I didn’t expect much but after watching some beautiful dolphins my day turned into a bliss really. It was love and just love in my heart and in my mind as I knew that dolphins can feel  your feelings and come to you if they feel the good vibration and I think my trick worked as there were so many out there, the whole nursery actually. I just loved to see them playing, swimming and going in circles near our boat.

Bucket-List 2013 Week 18 – Swim with Crocodile and Visit Kakadu National Park

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It was crazy to face all of them one by one but good thing is that I have seen them before in all size and forms and have learned more about them gradually. And once you know more about them they are less frightening as you understand that killing is in their nature and you got to be very careful around them.

I am back after my last update on my bucket list about visiting 7 cities in less than 7 months.  I have now also completed the below items:

  • Item Number #22 – Swim with Crocodile
  • Item Number #36 – Visit Twin Falls at Kakadu National Park – (Little variation with this as I only toured the park)

Here I was in the cage with one of the biggest crocodiles in the world and he did look hungry. I was more fascinated to see them and feel their closeness to the cage then being afraid really. Looking into their eyes and make them swim towards you thinking that you are food in a safe setting was the best way to encounter crocodiles in Australia as at least 1 person a year die in the rivers because of them at the moment. There are more crocodiles in Darwin than anywhere else in Australia at the moment and when we toured around the rivers there were almost 200 crocodiles in the river as compared to 20 tourists in the boat. And that’s when I was hoping to make it safe when there were so many predators looking at us as food.

I met two girls studying in Melbourne – Sanny from Netherlands and Margaux from Belgium, in the hostel I was staying. I had a wonderful time with them as we went to the bar located next to the pool in the hostel. Also co-incidentally we were booked to the same tour to Kakadu National park. Which made it even more adventurous and fun when we were the only three girls from our age group and we were able to have lots of fun including an innocent 15 min delay that caused us to apologize to people in the bus as the tour guide didn’t specify what time we have to be back and we got sucked into the beautiful views and aboriginal art in the area.

Here is also a link for my bucket list for 2013 if you haven’t had a look. My Promise to live life – My BucketList 2013

A little bit different and also another post about the fears I have in my life with a reflection of other reader’s experiences along with it. My Fears

Awesome and amazing travels…I love this bucket list concept as I am able to do so many cool things due to it 🙂

Love to all my readers!

Solo woman travelling to India – Fear or Joy

It made me think after I had an interview with BBC last night about how I feel as an Indian woman travelling around India by myself. It was around 12:30 AM Sydney time (24th August 2013) when I got a call from Chris, one of the producers of BBC news shows after my twitter update about my travel to India in few hours. Initially I thought it might be just a joke as at this hour I am getting a call to participate in an interview that too live. But soon I realized that it was actually happening and I had two choices – one go to bed as there were only 5-6 hours left to get some sleep before I catch my flight in the morning or stay awake for this interview discussion as not everyday you are given this opportunity. Guess what I chose the second option. Although before actually realizing what we are going to discuss I was all excited but soon enough the smile was replaced by the sadness and the excitement was replaced by the sheer anger and frustation.

The discussion was about the various issues that solo woman travellers face when they travel around India. It was inspired after a overnight hit article written by Michaela Cross, an Americal student who went to India to persue her studies in Abroad culture and civilization. It threw me into the same ocean of emotions that I have lived for almost 4-6 years when I was living back in India. All those memories dashed my mind in few minutes and some known emotions (anger, frustation, hatred, pain) made me feel overwhelmed.

I read the article published in CNN as adviced by Chris and instantly I felt a connection to this woman and her story.

Here is the link for the article:
http://edition.cnn.com/2013/08/20/world/american-student-india-sexual-harassment-irpt

Also I would share my thought of my India trip in this regard soon.

Travel Myths

 

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  • It is very expensive
  • I do not have a job so I can not travel as of now
  • I have a family and travel is for single people
  • I have pets and I can not leave them to travel
  • I have a good job so I can not travel
  • I may get killed or abducted
  • I am a responsible person so I can not leave everything and go travelling
  • I am not crazy to go travelling myself people will think I am mad
  • Not now but someday I might get a chance to travel
  • It’s not safe to travel alone
  • How can I travel alone as my partner and friends are not interested in travelling
  • I am vegetarian so I can not travel as I might not find good food
  • My family might not like it
  • I do not know many languages, how will I survive in foreign land
  • I do not have to run away from anything so why travel
  • Break in my career would not look good so I can not travel
  • I have a mortgage for house/car/education so its not possible for me to travel
  • I watch all the places in TV and travel show so why travel
  • I am not sure where to go as world is so big
  • Its not a good time to travel in this economy
  • I am too young to travel alone
  • I am too old to travel alone
  • No one travels alone from my culture, what would other people say
  • I am not retired yet as then I can go travel when I would have more time

We have so many excuses/myths not to travel even when we dream to go to beautiful places to experience wonderful new cultures, food and interaction with different people. So what can you do? Open a notepad and start writing why would you want to travel and I am damn sure that the reason to travel will outnumber the reason why you are not able to travel. Life is short and if you like travelling then nothing should stop you other than procrastination. So stop making excuses and book your next destination as even when you can’t leave your job and go away for long time, but you can always plan short trips with family, friends or your own wonderful company.

I had never travelled alone in my country as my parents would not let me go even to the next town alone. And my brother would always tag along wherever I went. Not that I didn’t like his company but I never really got the confidence that I can make it alone. But here I am after many years, travelling solo almost everywhere for last 2.5 years after my first solo adventure to Fiji. So if I, a single Indian girl, can do it then so can you. Just need to take a step at a time and then you will see that a whole new world of opportunities is waiting for you.

Happy and safe travels!

Darwin – Place to relax and enjoy Crocodile Dundy

I have been here for last 20 hours and have seen and done enough for a day so far. It was early morning or I should say just after midnight that my flight landed here (1 AM) and I end up spending the night in the airport. Then I took a bus for 16 AUD and got to my hostel around 6 AM. It was nice to keep my stuff away even when they told me to check in later. I had my breakfast (Beef pie with musroom) with my slow brain at that time of the day and hit the road to see the nearby (only) beach. I took pictures and had a little bit of a walk while exploring the new ways in Darwin with a happy mind. It took me through some parks and waterfront areas. I finally got to the beach and felt tired. I then retired at the park near beach and slept there for a while (almost 2 hours). Its not a bad idea to take nap I am thinking now 🙂

Then I came back and headed to my bucket list item – dive with crocodiles. I had an awesome time and will be back with some awesome pics and videos of it. I had fun with my Go Pro this time. Then I came back, checked in, had another nap as I am so super tired and then headed for open air cinema – Movie called ‘Crocodile Dundy’. Awesome day so far and now I feel like going out for a drink if energy in me permits.

Stay tuned as I will be back with pics and more adventure friends 🙂

Pics from nature with some witty names of the weekdays

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In Singapore airport ‘Butterfly Garden’

  

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In ‘Australia Zoo’

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In Singapore airport ‘Butterfly Garden’

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In ‘Australia Zoo’

  1. Moody Monday
  2. Troublesome Tuesday
  3. Wordless Wednesday
  4. Terrific Thursday
  5. Hip Hip Friday
  6. Sunny Saturday
  7. Slow down Sunday

What do you feel like today? Do write your unique way to see the days or even just for fun write one word for each day of the week and let’s see what we make of each day 🙂

Have fun!

Last minute check before travelling

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Most Important things:

  1. Passport / ID card depending upon where (domestic/international) you are travelling is available
  2. Air/train/bus ticket handy
  3. Visa is stamped if required
  4. Stay is arranged at the destination
  5. Backpack / suitcase ready for travelling
  6. Clothes packed as per the weather of the destination
  7. Medicines are available as per the individual requirement
  8. Copy a list of important numbers and save them separately in case of emergency (phone’s battery is dead)

Other Important things:

  1. Printout/copy of all the booked tours is handy
  2. Camera is charged and handy to take pictures with enough memory
  3. Phone is charged
  4. Phone has got the roaming activated if required
  5. Web-check in is done as it expedite the process while you are in the airport these days
  6. You have got the credit card working and also have some cash with you
  7. Check the fees that is charged on your card and keep the online banking details handy

Last but not the least keep smiling as sometimes preparation can be stressful but you need to remember that travel makes you happy 🙂

Hobart – 7th most famous cities in the world in 2013

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Leaving Sydney for Hobart, Tasmania

Awesome breakfast made by Sam (host)

Awesome breakfast made by Sam (host)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hobart – When I went to Tasmania, I wasn’t expecting much to be honest as the trip to Sunshine coast a few days before this made me a bit tired. And as it was going to be extreme change of weather from hot to cold so I was a bit nervous about my health as well. But then how come my trip can go without any adventure or a story to tell after all. So yes, I did have an awesome time with a lot to do in 4 days of my stay in Hobart that included meeting some really amazing people from Hobart.

The moment I arrived in Hobart I wrapped myself with scarf, beanie and a lot of clothes to make myself warm before leaving the plane and that worked really well. It was a dramatic entry to the city in the dark and cloudy night. This time I was about to experience my second couch surfing experience after Adelaide. I was a little bit nervous as this is something I am not very experienced after all and although I love meeting people but living at some one else’s place does throw you out of your comfort zone a little bit specially when saving money is not your priority.  But now when I look back I am glad that I did take the risk and did go ahead with my decision of being a couch surfer for one more time as otherwise I would not have met Sam, Steve and David. The most amazing and wonderful hosts in Hobart you can live with and have all the fun in the world. I cooked with David, learned salsa (I end up spinning in the wrong direction most of the times though) from Sam and Steve, did kayaking with  Steve and Sam, partied with Sam and his friends, watched a movie with Steve and Sam and so much more. I didn’t even feel that I just met them and rather felt like friends/family living at their place.

Seriously if you have never tried couch surfing then I would suggest to try it at least once in your life as this is such an amazing experience and if you meet some wonderful hosts like I did then you might have life time of memories to think about. Alright so what is about Hobart that makes it special. So here are some things that you should do when you are there:

  1. Visit Mona, museum of old and new art – This place defines art in some way. It is moreover based on the concept of death and sex so you might not like to take kids everywhere or may be just don’t give them Audio if they are very young. The owner, David Walsh, has described this museum as ‘subversive adult Disneyland’. This place gives you the feel of Hobart as art dominating place and it will also its opening date is same as the third MONA FOMA festival (21st January 2011).
  2. Salamanca Market – Every Saturday this famous market is held next to the beautiful dockland of Hobart. You might like to just walk around this area in case you have other plans on Saturday morning. Also this place lit-up in the night and is very famous among the party goers during the weekend due to many famous pubs and bars around.   20130808_101242      20130808_101502       20130808_102650
  3. Trip to Bruny Island – This trip usually takes three hours if you have your own car to get to the point from where the ferry leaves for the echo adventure tour otherwise day tours are also available. There is a seal colony at another edge of this island. You can spend some time knowing more about seals at this place.
  4. Mount Wellington – 1,271 meters high, this mountain is also referred as ‘The Mountain’ by the locals here. Hobart is located at the foothill of this mountain. And good news is that you can drive to the top as there is a road build by the many hard working people right up to the top for those who either don’t have enough time for trekking or don’t want to walk due to the bad weather. It was winter when I was there so I was able to get some snow at the peak of this mountain. There is a lookout near the summit from where you can get some really good views although it was raining and sky was a cloudy when I was there so I wasn’t able to spot much other than fog from here. You can read more about it’s history on the various steel slabs in this lookout and feel the part of this place itself.  20130809_16295420130809_162714 20130809_163056 20130809_163122 20130809_163605 20130809_163650
  5. Kayaking in the Derwent river around Hobart is an amazing way to explore the beautiful surroundings of Hobart

Also for more attraction other than the above you can use the below links.

Bucket-List 2013 Week 15 – 7 places traveled in 3 months rather than 7 months

Another day in paradise that’s how it feels when  you travel really. And here I am to share some of my experience with you now after I have completed the 4th item on my bucket list – Visit at least 7 cities of Australia in next 7 months.

Here is also a link for my bucket list for 2013 if you haven’t had a look. My Promise to live life – My BucketList 2013

A little bit different and also another post about the fears I have in my life with a reflection of other reader’s experiences along with it. My Fears

So where all have I been so far, part of it you already know if you have read my old posts

  1. Adelaide
  2. Port Lincoln
  3. Cairns
  4. Byron Bay
  5. Snowy Mountain
  6. Sunshine Coast ( I will share the  pics and adventure from here in my next post)
  7. Hobart, Tasmania 

Although this item is complete but that doesn’t mean I am not going to travel anymore as trip to Darwin is already planned with another trip to Coffs Harbour and Brisbane in coming months. And more adventure awaits meanwhile as well.

So stay tuned for more fun stories and updates from my travels.

Celebrations!! Two more Articles Published in a Travel Website – ‘The Hostel Life’

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Yahoo!!

I am so happy as I have got two more articles published in the famous travel website – ‘The Hostel Life’. Check it out and let me know what do you think.

  1. Everything you need to know about Sri Lanka
  2. 5 Crazy things to do in India

Thanks to Corinne, the editor/publisher for publishing my articles in the website. And many thanks Mehdy Ghannad, creator, producer, writer and host of the show ‘The Hoste Life’ for making me part of their group of writers.

Workout makes you feel tired? What to eat pre-workout, post-workout and during the workout

 

Most of you would know and if don’t then I am a part time personal trainer as well. And I keep getting questions around health and nutritions. So here is some information that I have compiled for about what you can eat or drink before, during and after your workout. Hope this is useful.

 

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This is my favourite sweet (fruit crumble with ice cream) just for the weekend 🙂

 

Imp: Exercising in a fasted state (8 hours since the last meal) results in a greater proportion of fat being used as the exercise fuel compared to doing the same workload after a carbohydrate-containing meal or snack.

The following foods are suitable to eat 3-4 hours before exercise: The following snacks are suitable to eat 1-2 hours before exercise:

 

The following foods are suitable to eat if there is less than 1 hour before exercise:
•crumpets with jam or honey + flavoured milk

•baked potato + cottage cheese filling + glass of milk

•baked beans on toast

•breakfast cereal with milk

•bread roll with cheese/meat filling + banana

•fruit salad with fruit-flavoured yoghurt

•pasta or rice with a sauce based on low-fat ingredients (e.g. tomato, vegetables, lean meat)

•liquid meal supplement

•milk shake or fruit smoothie

•sports bars (check labels for carbohydrate and protein content)

•breakfast cereal with milk

•cereal bars, Energy/ Granola bars

•fruit-flavoured yoghurt

• Bananas or other fresh fruit

 

•sports drink

•carbohydrate gel

•cordial

•sports bars

•jelly lollies

 

 Tip:

  • A general guide is to have a meal about 3-4 hours before exercise or a lighter snack about 1-2 hours before exercise. You need to experiment to find the timing, amount and make up that best suits your individual needs.
  • If you need to eat close to exercise, opt for a snack that provides at least 70 g of carbohydrate.  There is some evidence to suggest that small amounts of carbohydrate (<50 g) are more likely to cause problems in sensitive individuals than larger amounts.  This is probably because the small intake of carbohydrate is swamped by the carbohydrate use.  Larger intakes will compensate for a greater rate of use, leaving the athlete with a net gain in available carbohydrate.
  • Exercising in a fasted state (8 hours since the last meal) results in a greater proportion of fat being used as the exercise fuel compared to doing the same workload after a carbohydrate-containing meal or snack

 Drinks:

  • During Workout
    Unless you are running hard for extending periods of time, gatorade is completely unnecessary and can actually hamper your workouts. Stick with water, about 6-8 ounces every 30 minutes.
  • Post-Workout
    Within 10 minutes of finishing your workout, you should again be having some form of complex carb or carb shake. Don’t miss this window.
  • After 1 hour
    Lean meat or fish with light veggie and more water.

10 must do things when you are in India

 

  1. Attend a festival – We have so many festivals in India that every month you can count a few.  India is the most colorful land when it comes to festivals. No matter which month you go, there is always something going on. Although few big festivals are Holi, Diwali and Dussehra are the main festivals.
  2. Attend a marriage – Indians have big fat weddings and some of the riches are famous for show off as well but it’s worth attending a marriage when you are there as it is an easy way to immerse yourself in the culture and get the feel of the soul of Indian culture in short time that too with a lot of fun.
  3. Cook an Indian meal – You will learn so much about different spices that Indians use in their food as well as the reason to use them. Ever spice has a property that helps either in digestion or healing or something else in your body that you will discover when you try cooking some of the stuff. Do learn how to cook ‘daal’ and ‘saag’. You would be able to boast when you go back that you can cook some Indian food and guess what lots of people around the world love Indian food.
  4. Watch any classical dance performance – We have many
  5. Go to temple and worship in traditional way. Every evening devotees gather to sing praise in temples and it is music to ear and one of the things that you must experience
  6. Eat at the stalls by the side of streets – Give it some more time when you arrive in India as you might be new to this kind of non-hygienic way of eating but locals eat on such place almost every day. Even the corporate professionals walk down the street from their work place to enjoy some snacks every now and then. Make sure that you eat something that is cooked in front of you and not sitting there for quiet a while. There are some hygienic but little expensive options to try the same things in good restaurants like Haldiram where hygiene is guaranteed. Although many Indians think it doesn’t taste as good as the roadside food but it should be fine as long as you can get the feel of various food here. Like everywhere else you can also get McDonald here but with an Indian touch. Although I would suggest to avoid that if you are not feeling home sick.
  7. Shop from the street market and bargain the price – One of the surprising experience you might have when you buy something less than 20% of the actual cost. You need to know that most of the times shop keepers rise the price when they think you are a foreigner. So make sure not to get ripped just because you are travelling. One of the tricks to get a good bargain is not to show much interest otherwise they are smart enough to know that you like the stuff and you might be happy to pay any price they ask for.
  8. Live with a local family – This is the closest you can see and live the soul of the very culture in any country. And India is no different. So make friends and try to live with some one’s family and eat home made food. I bet you wouldn’t regret it.
  9. Get a pic on a rickshaw and bus – You will see the difference immediately from other places. It’s fun though.
  10. Travel by train – I know its is a little bit tough and scary at first but after listening to many fellow traveler I can say one thing. You can see true India here. Just few hours of journey and you will make lots of friends and hear many stories. But make sure you keep your bags around you all the time in case something is not insured.

Chaos is how I will describe my life

Chaos is how I will describe my life,

No time to rest, no time to step back and reflect.

Just the daily activities that I am involved in as a robot,

From the moment I get up and go to work till I am lying in bed to get some sleep.

 

I try hard to fight with the system and get out of it,

Every now and then and go for a retreat.

But its hard at times – it’s hard changing your life,

Specially when you are so busy doing the same thing over and over again.

 

Yes, it does make me think of my situation,

What can I do to make the most of my day,

So I do catch up with my friends and try to attend something,

I try to write to keep my creative edge alive since I have started.

 

Still I want to make a living doing something worthwhile in life,

Not that what I am doing now doesn’t make a difference as it does.

But other than keeping my analytical brain at work,

It does not give the sense of satisfaction in life irrespective of the money it generates.

 

Why in the first place we devised such system called – work for living,

I know, because that is a smooth way of running the world without chaos.

And here I am in the midst of this so called perfect system,

Finding this life more chaotic than it can ever be.

Second day at Byron Bay…the weekend was yet not over

I didn’t have any plans for rest of the day after the Hot Air Ballooning adventure of mine. Once I was back in my hostel, I came to know about this monthly market that was held today in town. I felt excited once again to see something new so I checked out of the hostel, as my train back to Sydney was in the evening, and headed to the town with my backpack with me. I was again on my way for some more sight seeing. I was lucky that I got to visit this market and it was a nice way to explore more about the culture of the place as well. Market was more like a fair in this little town and there were colors everywhere. I did try some ice-cream and enjoyed some live music with the locals. It was a true authentic experience that makes you feel almost a part of the place.

After visiting the market, I called one of the friends that I made yesterday to catch up before I leave and he was generous to give me a nice tour of the nearby beach and then a small town called ‘Bungalow’. If you are looking for some peaceful and small place to stay then this is your destination. It is more like a countryside with a road full of greenery leading to it. It is a nice 15 minutes drive from Byron Bay with nice cafe and small market of its own. Also there are many art galleries and shops at this place. We came back to Byron Bay and as there was an hour left before I could catch my bus so we though of getting something to eat and drink in a nearby cafe just across the bus stand while still enjoying the sunset. It was 5:00 PM when I saw a bus with the Country Link logo waiting at the bus stand. I checked my itinerary and the time to board the bus was 5:15 PM on it. I still thought it’s better to board the bus in advance so I started getting my stuff together in order to get to the bus stand. The moment I arrived the bus stand the bus left. What? This can’t be happening I thought in my head. My friend was still with me so he offered me a ride to the next stop to catch the bus. Soon we were chasing this bus but soon it disappeared. I panicked thinking about the incidence last morning when I missed the station but this time I was angry thinking how can the bus leave earlier than the time mentioned on the itinerary. Suddenly my friend realized that the direction we were going was not correct and it was leading us to Brisbane (in the opposite direction to Sydney) and we saw another bus coming from the opposite direction. We quickly took a U-Turn and drove back to the bus stand as we realized we were chasing the wrong bus altogether and the bus to Sydney was on time. That’s what happens when you panic and when you have already missed your bus/station in past. I said good by to my friend and finally boarded the bus to Sydney (its a break journey – bus to Casino and then another train to Sydney from there). This time I didn’t miss anything and got home the next morning before going to work. So overall it was a weekend full of fun, adventure, thrill and excitement I must say. Hope you enjoyed it with me 🙂 I will be back with some more stories as I plan my next destination which is not far but only two weeks from now. Where? That I will reveal in my future posts.  Till then enjoy life and keep smiling my friend 🙂

Concussion couldn’t stop me from skiing – Pain is temporary, but if I quit then it will last forever

Now that you know after my last post (Concussion on a Ski Trip – Lost few memories but gained many more) that I fell bad on the first day of my ski trip in Snowy Mountains.
Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever. – Lance Armstrong

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This quote was all in my head when I got there the next day and was about to decide to take rest and give up on skiing the next day. But then we arrived there and I quickly thought to give it a go. My aim today was to practice whatever I had learned and take lesson to improve upon my techniques. I took a  lesson and guess what it paid. It was good and I didn’t fall all day other than once in a lesson when I was taught to actually life my leg when putting pressure on the other leg while taking a turn. And I did a bit too much and fell. It didn’t hurt though and I was able to get back on my ski quiet quickly. And I had a lot of fun which even made me forget the pain in my brain and neck. I was trying to make sure that I do not fall as it was the hardest bit to get up with so much pain around my neck and brain. So I did manage not to fall until a girl dragged me down while getting off the lift and fell on me. I hit my bottom hard and took a while to get over it and start skiing down the mountain again. I am really happy that I did manage to ski the other day as it made me learn more about myself that day and now I really feel proud of myself I can say. I did earned some respect as well I would say in that tour from rest of the people. And now I am happy to go back once I get better and once this head injury heals completely. Here are some pics for you to enjoy my friend 🙂

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Concussion on a Ski Trip – Lost few memories but gained many more

‘What am I doing here and how did I got here?’ This was my first question when I found myself in this windy and cold place where there was snow all around me. I felt like it was a dream and all I remember was that everything was black & white and no colors at all. There was this guy who was helping me to get up and all I could say was – ‘How do I know you?‘ It felt a bit awkward but I did ask how did I meet him and where? It then occurred to me that I do not remember a lot of things – for example I had no memory of getting here at the top of this mountain, in the midst of snow. It started to scare me a little and that’s when this guy asked me to ski down when and I thought it’s a dream so I didn’t take it seriously and skied down straight and fast. Again I have no memory about what happened after that. Next thing I remember is that this guy was taking me to this cafe and asking everyone where he can find a medical personnel. It started to scare me now as I told him that I am fine and we can go and have coffee or something but he insisted on taking me to a doctor and we finally found a medical room and he left. I felt bad as he was nice and the only person I knew for at least few minutes of whatever memory I was left with.

I was then asked a lot of questions from the doctor. I did remember that I am from Sydney but had no clue what I am doing here or even where I am. It scared me a little but soon my fear was replaced by curiosity of seeing so many medical personnel around me asking me so many questions and making calls. I kept seeing new faces for a while before I fainted for a while again and they woke me up quick enough as that was the most dangerous state I could be after the concussion I had I was told. Now I knew what had happened to me – Concussion. So here I was lying in the medical room till they arrange to take me to the hospital in the town. Now the issue was they couldn’t take me back via lift as there was a chance that I had broken something around my neck due to the pain I had in my head and neck. So they decided to ski me down in a body bag (as my friend called it later). I felt like a dead person every time she reminded me that I was brought to hospital in a body bag. Here is a picture of how they usually ski injured people. I was in the similar situation as well with a lot of snow on my face till I got to the bottom with my heart pumping hard every time I would see the slopes they were going through and the edges from where I could see deep down to the forests covered with snow. But finally I got to the hospital where Kelly, the girl I met a day before on this trip was waiting for me. She was a very good friend by now and funny too as she was taking her own picture lying in the bed next to mine when doctor had kept me under observation.

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This is me just before I had a fall

Ski Down

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was hard enough to walk but then we decided to take pictures while going back from the hospital as the view was just stunning. Here are the pics of me and my friend Kelly after the whole concussion episode.

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We got back to the bus on time before it left back to the hostel and I had the story of the town by now as everyone knew in the bus that I had an accident and people started asking me what happened. But that was a difficult question to answer specially when I didn’t remember much. So what happened the next day? Did I ski anymore or not? Lets wait for my next post and see what do I do. Some more pics and some stories to come 🙂

Strange but Fun Facts & Laws to Read

I was reading this post – Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast from my friend Jill London and in order to send her some more weired facts in addition to the one in her post, I stumbled upon few really strange facts that I felt I can share with you all. Hope you find something new in these may be not so strange facts 🙂

  • Tablecloths were originally meant to be served as towels with which dinner guests could wipe their hands and faces after eating!
  • Tourists visiting Iceland should know that tipping at a restaurant is considered an insult!
  • Until the nineteenth century, solid blocks of tea were used as money in Siberia!
  • When glass breaks, the cracks move faster than 3,000 miles per hour. To photograph the event, a camera must shoot at a millionth of a second!
  • There are no clocks in Las Vegas gambling casinos!
  • All polar bears are left handed.
  • No word in the English language rhymes with “MONTH.”
  • “Dreamt” is the only English word that ends in the letters “mt”
  • In the White House, there are 13,092 knives, forks and spoons!
  • Slugs have 4 noses!
  • About 3000 years ago, most Egyptians died by the time they were 30!
  • In space, astronauts cannot cry properly, because there is no gravity, so the tears can’t flow down their faces!
  • In Bangladesh, kids as young as 15 can be jailed for cheating on their finals!
  • The elephant is one of the few mammals that can’t jump!
  • America once issued a 5-cent bill
  • A man named Charles Osborne had the hiccups for 69 years! Wow!
  • Chewing gum while peeling onions will keep you from crying!
  • Bats always turn left when exiting a cave!
  • Honolulu is the only place in the United States that has a royal palace!
  • More money is spent on gardening than on any other hobby!
  • The fear of vegetables is called Lachanophobia!..
  • A toothpick is the object most often choked on by Americans
  • Men are 6 times more likely to be struck by lightning than women!
  • Most dust particles in your house are made from dead skin!
  • Bulls are colour blind, therefore will usually charge at a matador’s waving cape no matter what colour it is — be it red or neon yellow! – Now that makes me think twice as I always thought that Red colour does make a difference and if I stand wearing may be white then I might hide from his eyes.  Good to know this fact I think
  • Apples are more efficient than caffeine in keeping people awake in the mornings – Wow I might carry an apple now as two coffee a day is something that is needed at the moment to keep me going otherwise which is not so good for health really
  • Smelling bananas and/or green apples (smelling, not eating) can help you lose weight – Everyone trying to reduce weight, read this as it might be of some help in reducing those ounces
  • The poison-arrow frog has enough poison to kill about 2,200 people!
  • The original name for the butterfly was ‘flutterby’!

There are some really strange laws also in place around the world that made me think for a while.

  •  In Virginia, chickens cannot lay eggs before 8:00 a.m., and must be done before 4:00 p.m. – wow how do we control that now
  • In North Carolina, it is against the law for dogs and cats to fight. – We are making laws for animals as well now
  • In New Jersey, cabbage can’t be sold on Sunday. – What’s wrong with that ?
  • In the State of Kansas, you’re not allowed to drive a buffalo through a street. – Yes that makes it safe now
  • In Kentucky, it’s the law that a person must take a bath once a year. – That makes a state less stinkier
  • In Louisiana, a bill was introduced years ago in the State House of Representatives that fixed a ceiling on haircuts for bald men of 25 cents. – Do they even need it?
  • In Tennessee, it is against the law to drive a car while sleeping. – Do people do that all the time otherwise?
  • California law prohibits a woman from driving a car while dressed in a housecoat. – Man that’s not fair now
  • In Illinois, the law is that a car must be driven with the steering wheel. – Really??
  • In Miami, it is forbidden to imitate an animal. – I need to be more careful now, not that I have ever done that
  • The law states that more than 3000 sheep cannot be herded down Hollywood Blvd. at any one time.
  • In Missouri, a man must have a permit to shave. – really??
  • In Michigan, it is against the law for a lady to lift her skirt more than 6 inches while walking through a mud puddle. – Man I am not going there wearing a skirt now 🙂

Second day at Byron Bay – Hot Air Ballooning with a bunch of Sky Divers

 So far you have enjoyed the last two articles about my adventurous weekend in Byron Bay, Australia. Now I would love to share my experience of day 2 which was also full of excitement and joy. In case you missed my other two posts then here is the link to the same for you my friend.

Hot Air Ballooning with 7 Sky Divers

Hot Air Ballooning with 7 Sky Divers

Alarm went off around 4:30 AM and first time in weeks I was not frustrated as I had enough sleep this time so I quickly jumped out of the bed with excitement. Today was the day I was going to experience Hot Air Ballooning. So many times I dreamt of doing it but every time I felt I should wait for some one special to do it with. But finally I decided to do it on my own after one of my friend suggested that it is an experience that you get to feel individually anyways so why wait for some one when you can do it by yourself. So here I was waiting at the gate of the hostel to get picked up around 5:15 AM. A car pulled up next to me and I confirmed that it was from the Ballooning company. After a warm welcome message from the guy driving the car, I fastened my seat belt and we headed to the location for base(the office for ballooning ). It was still dark when we arrived at the base. I could see many people getting ready in their gears for sky diving. I felt as if I was the only one in the balloon staying back and almost everyone else was going to jump. I wished I could jump with them for a moment and this thought was interrupted by one of the sky divers. She introduced herself and a formal round of introduction kick started for few minutes. These were professionals with more than few hundred and even few thousand jumps. My goodness, I almost freeze to digest this information now. I was excited and felt a bit naive to talk to these people now as whatever jargons they were using I couldn’t understand half of them. I met Thomas, the chief pilot of Byron Bay Ballooning (http://www.byronbayballooning.com.au) and signed some forms as part of the formal process. Thomas was quiet reassuring as I was a bit nervous as well excited, this being my first balloon flight.

Thomas after successful landing

Thomas after successful landing

Soon we started for Casino, place from where the balloon was supposed to fly. I was cold but super excited. I chose to sit with other sky divers in the first van to listen to some insightful information they would like to share during this one hour journey. It was a nice ride till the patrol station where the drivers stopped to fill patrol. I was told a lot of things and these people were very nice to explain me a lot of new concepts that made me look a bit puzzled. I shared rest of the way with other set of people and got to know some more people on my way to Casino. It was an overwhelming morning I must say, so much that I kind of forgot that I was here for ballooning really.

Once we arrived in Casino, the process of unloading the balloon and setting it up started. It was such a huge balloon, I guess all of them are but I was witnessing it for the first time. It was like preparing for a festival, with so many people helping in the process and some of us trying to shoot the process or take pictures of the location. As the balloon rose, it was such a mesmerising view with all the colours rising in the sky with the bright light of  the sun. Then we climbed into the balloon and Thomas started to fill the balloon with hot air and the balloon took off. It was so smooth that we didn’t feel anything but only the view started changing as we gained height. Just so that you know Thomas has been flying since the age of 22 and has also won many awards.  So if you are in Byron Bay and feel like ballooning then he is your guy. I was trying to absorb this whole experience while also taking a lot of pictures at the same time. The basket is divided in three compartments and the middle one is reserved for the pilot with some gas cylinders. We were almost 12 people, 6 in each baskets on both the sides and out of which 7 were sky divers. Soon we rose to the height of 6000 feet and it was an amazing view. It felt so light and beautiful to see the whole area at this hour of the morning. It was around 8:45 AM. The divers were all ready to jump and soon we hit the height of 9000 feet from where they were supposed to jump. It was more scary to look at them standing on the edges of the basket. And I guess I was more excited and worried than them. Some of them were doing it for the first time which I thought was very brave and increased my respect for all these divers. Soon before I realised they started jumping from the balloon. It was so fast that I didn’t even get chance to take many pictures of them jumping and soon they disappeared from the sight. We started moving towards the destination, Thomas was co-ordinating with rest of the team to make sure all the divers are safe and have been located after reaching the ground.

Thomas started to prepare us for landing and soon we were descending fast, not that you can feel it other than the height displayed on the system. We landed on a  farm with more than 50  bulls all staring at us in not so welcoming mood. Thomas waited for rest of the team to come to this location and get the permission from the farm owner before getting us all climb out of the balloon. Once the team was here, the bulls started heading towards their vans and soon we were out of this adventurous and risky zone. And next thing I remember, we were all rolling the balloon and packing everything back in the vehicle to head back. I was still floating in the sky in my thoughts though as it is a last longing experience and it takes some time to get back to reality I can say. Thomas stopped in a nice cafe on the way and bought lunch for all of us as part of the package. I chose Spanish Omelette and you know what, it was the best breakfast ever after such a beautiful start of the day. What else can you ask from life I thought with a smile. The day is yet not over my friend and I still have to share my experience of the monthly market, beach and one of the most beautiful town/village in the area before I finish my story. So keep an eye for another post after this 🙂 Till then have a wonderful day my friend.

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Fabulous Day at Byron Bay – Kayaking, Flying and some sight seeing

    So now that you know how it all started, you might be ready to know the best part of the day. And if you missed the last part then here is the link to it:
    It all happened so quickly when I was wondering about the plan for rest of the day in this new place. I saw the advertisement for Kayaking and one of my friends had told me about this awesome experience as must have in Byron Bay. And the hostel manager of Cape Byron Lodge(oldest backpacker in Byron Bay – http://www.capebyronlodge.com) was quiet nice to book it quickly for me and before I unpacked all the stuff I got the time for their pickup around 9:30 AM and within half an hour I was on my way for Kayaking (http://www.goseakayakbyronbay.com.au).

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It was exactly what I need, splash of water, a bumpy entry into the ocean through some rough waves that almost flicked me out of the boat and a serene beauty of the place to look at. I was almost lost in the place and this whole fun experience. It was a reward of all that hard work I felt and all that planning that went behind this. I was so relaxed that I almost forgot all about morning. We spotted so many dolphins while kayaking. Me and my buddy even went back to catch some more waves but the second time we got washed away by the bigger waves. It was great fun and the people in the kayaking company were super friendly that started this whole trip in a very nice manner. I met many interesting and friendly people on this trip and when I came back I couldn’t stop smiling thinking about such an interesting morning. Once I was back in hostel I requested the manager for some more information on hand gliding as I had heard that it is also a very nice activity that you can do and it was on my bucket list as well. He even booked one for me, although a different version with micro light plane as the wind was not good for flying otherwise. img_6072_med_hr img_6073_med_hrimg_6091_med_hr It was good to fly over the coastal line of Byron Bay with an expert pilot (http://byronbayskysurfers.com). And after my flight I made friends with few pilots and one of them offered me a ride but unfortunately I had to head back to hostel but I promised to come back to Byron Bay again for it. See, very nice people really. I love Byron Bay J After returning to my hostel I went to the light house and the hostel manager was very friendly to arrange the hostel van to give me a ride to the light house. And I had some cool shot of sunset after two of my other adventures. It was the best way to wind down the day really.

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 I was thinking to go out that night even though I have quit drinking but I can still enjoy with plain juice I thought. But then I had arranged the Hot Air Ballooning the other day so it made sense to get some rest before my pick up around 5:15 AM the next day. I made some noodles and had some baked apple for my dinner and went to bed with a happy soul J Best day after getting burnt out last week with hectic life and work not that this day wasn’t busy but I guess this is my way to relax 😉 So what happens the next day? Yes I am about to start writing about that so stay tuned. And here is the link to the next post.

Second day at Byron Bay – Hot Air Ballooning with a bunch of Sky Divers

 

Road to Byron Bay – Not so easy but worthwhile for an interesting weekend

About to start a long train journey to get to my next stop - Byron Bay

About to start a long train journey to get to my next stop – Byron Bay

That's happy me before the journey started..all excited for the trip

That’s happy me before the journey started..all excited for the trip

Queue for dinner in the train..yes I kind of liked this whole new experience after taking so many flights recently :)

Queue for dinner in the train..yes I kind of liked this whole new experience after taking so many flights recently 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was a long train journey and got worse when couldn’t get comfortable to get enough sleep. Yes, right I didn’t sleep all night to make sure I get down at the Casino to catch a bus to Byron Bay, even asked the guy working in the train to wake me up just in case. And good thing that it’s their job to wake people up otherwise in the night trains it might be chaos if people who board can’t get the seat because other people have forgotten to get down. I was able to get 1 hour nap and caught the bus to Byron Bay. And then I decided to watch a movie as the journey was only for 3 hours. So I started a dance movie that was downloaded on my phone. I watched some of it but then sitting in a bus where everyone was sleeping and there was not enough light at this time of the night so I felt a bit sleepy. I took a nap and put an alarm to wake me up as I was supposed to get down at Byron Bay around 5:55 AM. My alarm ran off and I realized its 4:55 AM and felt like having a 5 minutes nap which I do at home sometimes before going to work. I heard someone mentioning Byron Bay but I felt I was dreaming.

Suddenly I woke up and looked at my phone. It was 6:15 AM and I was supposed to be going Hot Air Ballooning before 6 AM (a guy was waiting in Byron Bay to pick me up). Shit! That was my exact expression. I ran to the driver and asked how far Byron Bay is. He looked at me in surprise and told me that Byron Bay station already passed. What? I didn’t sleep all night for this. What…I didn’t have words for few minutes and I asked him how far it is? It was 20-25 minutes away and I wanted to jump out of bus to catch a ride back but at this hour it was neither safe nor a very good option. The driver realized I was travelling by myself so he tried to help me out by dropping me in a safe place (it was the next town) and called the other bus driver from the same company who was supposed to go to Byron Bay via this place. I waited for one hour near this beautiful little town called Brunswick Head from about 6:30 AM to 7:30 AM.

Yes, that's me sad and cold in the morning when I missed my station :(

Yes, that’s me sad and cold in the morning when I missed my station 😦

It was cold but I managed to walk to the nearby river and get some nice shots before I realized that my shoes were wet with the dew on the grass. I looked at the sky and asked – What’s next? Hit me with a lightning now. I was angry at myself to miss the Ballooning today not knowing how the weather would be the next day. I was angry at myself to stand in this cold weather where not many options were available in the town even to get some hot coffee at this hour. But an hour passed quickly now that I think about it and I caught the bus while the driver knew me as the girl who slept and missed her station. Yes, that makes me a little famous now. But you know what I wasn’t wrong when I was thinking everything happens for a reason, and you will find out soon why.

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I got to my hostel which was way too far and even after getting lost on the way (as the road on which the hostel was located was not in the map I had with me), I managed to get there before 8: 30 AM with the help of some really nice locals. And after getting there I found the reception is closed and many people are waiting there including a couple whom I saw in the bus with me. I wished if they could have waked me up in Byron Bay station but of course they might not have known my station. Finally the manager of the hostel came and told everyone that he is still hung over and just found out that there is no one at the reception. When it was my turn to check in, I end up having a decent conversation with him as he felt a little bit embarrassed with the whole situation at the reception with so many people waiting to check in. He felt relaxed and I felt better after talking to someone in a light manner in spite of having a really bad morning. What happens next? How the day gets better and better? Yes, I am still writing that and want you to have this first part till then. I will be back with the awesome day after this soon my lovely friend.