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Get, set, go!

The ‘travel bug’ or whatever fancy name, in recent times, is associated with the thrill of an upcoming journey – is an unparalleled feeling. Be it in the packing or adding additional items after the ‘final’ packing is done, the excitement runs high. Invariably, we end up forgetting something vital, often inconsequential things like handkerchiefs or loose change. Sometimes, things turn serious with mobile chargers or power banks going amiss.

Of all the travel planners, the one thing that never worked for me is the ‘travel checklist’. How are we supposed to keep checking things off the list if we are going to continue adding stuff to the list itself until the eleventh hour? Amidst the chaotic rush of noises, excited voices and everything that precedes a week long travel excursion, there is something that detaches you from the hustle and gives you inner peace.

After much research, it has been concluded, (by the members of my extended family) that the only thing that beats the chaos of travel is the feeling that nothing can be controlled and everything will happen as it would.

This philosophical realization might have come after we watched the eldest aunt pack her travel bag with her digital blood pressure monitor after having unpacked it for the fifth time. Well, it was the season of weddings, and naturally such a digital monitor would be helpful for everyone. Come to think of it, I could even set up a counter in some corner of the vast hall and offer to check everyone’s (definitely rising) blood pressure levels. That can turn lucrative. *stores thought aside* *ensures that the digital monitor is packed*

The last three or four days have been a continuous stream of constantly doing something but completing nothing. And I have come to understand the difference between distance and displacement. There, I have finally found the use for that chapter on kinematics I studied in my eleventh standard. The packing apart, there is also the lingering sense of disquiet about missing something vital from the shopping list itself. *rechecks the list once and nods doubtfully*

But just how many trips can you make to the shopping district in a short span of fifteen days? The shopkeepers have grown to recognize me and I think the next in line would be a special visitor’s pass that I would get simply for enduring the impossible twelve hour long days of shopping. That is an achievement. I have also lost count of the freebies the shops have offered because we were continuously the top billers for three consecutive days. Just kidding. We missed it closely. But still I think it is proof enough that the shopkeeper said ‘The travel bag freebie is not in stock, madam, but I will have it tomorrow. You can collect it when you come here!’

I don’t know which one I laughed harder at – her assumption that I will have to invariably make another visit the very next day, or the fact that I would actually be making that visit because one of us forgot that one thing we could have bought the previous day, in the same place, in the same shop. *gives a frustrated bark of a laugh*

With all the packing (almost) done and the bags kept away, the never ending list has successfully been stolen from right under the elders’ noses. A huge public thank you to the good Samaritan from the family who did this feat. And the next time I find the person who said travelling would be fun, I have the four choicest words to hurl at them. You know absolutely nothing. Phew. Honestly.

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