I have a habit of dreaming about travel. I like to travel and I do travel, but not as much as I would like to. This makes me want to travel, and leads me to dream about travelling. Of fast trains and blurring views. Of majestic views atop mountains, of rapid rivers, calm seas, magnificent metropolises and quaint bucolic pastures.
This dreaming has progressed to such an extent, that I find it has become a hobby in its own right. I pointlessly look up pictures of strange places, possessed by an intense desire to be there, to experience it all. I want to stand by ‘Christ the Redemptor’ at Rio. I want to see Stonehenge. To be silenced by the Victoria falls, bustled about in Hong Kong and look at the Mona Lisa. To see the Aurora Borealis inflame the skies above Helsinki, cross the Danube on foot, Be enamoured by Hollywood. I want to travel down every road that goes somewhere and be on a train to a far-off destination. I want to see it all, have it all. Be everywhere.
Strangely enough when I do visit places, a profound sense of anticlimax dawns on me and I can only look at whatever I went to see. How much ever you believe in the journey being the real manzil, there must be a frisson of excitement when one reaches the destination. All I have instead is a jaded feeling of ennui.
Wanderlust ever conspires to waylay weary travelers. And that is how I find myself on the roads time and again. The pleasures gained on making a monumental journey to see ancient wonders and boast of having been to foreign lands, the pleasure of seeing your very own neighborhood after heavy rains, are they the same? Does geographical disparity interfere with the traveler’s conscience? Would I be as happy to spend a night at Hanoi, trek through Darfur or prance about in Patagonia?
And amidst such nebulous thoughts I am suddenly drawn back to the mundane world with the familiar ping on gtalk.
*Picture-Kaveri delta near Karaikal, TN, India