The longer I am in India, the more I realise I’m on a spiritual journey. This journey seems to be about identity and I guess I’m using my blog mostly to figure things out, organise my thoughts and write things off my mind. It’s difficult to understand what nomadic slow living does to me and my mind.
For the first time in my life I feel like I’ve got a lot of space to think about my life; whether past, present or future. I’ve got the chance to detox my life, body and mind by reflecting, closing chapters and making new choices. I had never thought I’d be able to do this before turning 30. I mean, I had been trying this for so many years, but every time I got caught up in work, responsibilities, expectations from others and all the issues and hardships I had to deal with. I had been through a lot and it felt like I was continuously busy cleaning up the mess. Every time when I was just about to finish the cleaning, some other thing happened. Hence, I had never got the chance to work on new things. Now I have.
Nomadic slow living in India helps me in this process, as there’s a lot to see around. Every conversation teaches me something new. Whether I talk to the Xerox man, the pani puri woman, some children playing outside, the bank person, a security guard, driver or jewelry seller; every single meeting triggers something in my mind. The triggers turn into thoughts and the thoughts turn into insights that enrichen my mind, choices and life. Sometimes it feels like I’m a mystery guest exploring daily life in India. I talk to people and ask them about things to know more about their daily lives and the way they see things. I feel blessed to have this opportunity to interact with them so openly. Many people share their stories with me and don’t treat me as an outsider, because in their eyes I’m one of them, a native Indian.
I don’t tell them I’m from abroad and if I tell them, they don’t believe me. “The way you talk, behave, dress and everything is typically Indian,” many people say to me. The only thing they’re usually surprised about is me greeting them respectfully, interacting with them and thanking them. I guess they aren’t used to people showing interest in them and their stories. Anyway, it really changes my perspective on many things in life and inspires me to deepen my minimalistic lifestyle more. I work less, go on long walks, use public transport, explore the city (mostly its people), journal a lot (private) and I keep a tight budget. I thought I was very good at budgetting, but after talking to the pani puri woman, I realised there is so much to learn from Indians with a lower income. This way I am also learning to find joy in smaller things.
For many people this type of slow travelling is very boring, but for me it’s priceless. I learn so much and because of this I’m able to refine the redesigning of my life. I feel that, because of COVID-19 I’ll not be able to enjoy to the fullest when I go to travel some beautiful place. So I’m using this time to work on my personal development, redesign my life, arrange things and when I’m ready to travel to some awesome place, my joy will be more than double. At that point travel won’t be an escape from daily life anymore; my daily life will be full of happiness and my travels will only add more to that.