Butchering the HEART of Free Travel

Malaysian Airliner MH17 was shot down, killing 298 people on board. Debates were and still are being held if it was the Ukrainian troops or the Russian backed separatists. The fact remains in bigger caps, 298 people, were killed. Internet abounds today with experts’ videos bent upon to give us an unbiased view of the Israel Palestine conflict with titles, everything you need to know of Gaza strip happenings, just under 2mins. The fact remains yet again, scores of innocent humans reaching medical facilities in bad shapes, shivering, bleeding, dying, leaving behind a scene of chaotic mess of bodies as reported in a heartbreaking letter by a doctor operating on the scene. Ohh, do you know there are international laws of armed conflict stating lawful weapons? FYI, firing flechette shell, an anti-personnel weapon that is generally fired from a tank which explodes in the air and releases thousands of metal darts is just lawful, and so, were used in Gaza!

But how do these scenes fit on a travel blog? They do madam/sir, they do just like this news of a Chinese cyclist kidnapped in Pakistan while touring the country in May this year. And I need not quote any example for the reason behind the heightened insecurity feelings of Indian women today or on continual Naxal insurgencies in the State. Just while I was working on this piece, I happened to stumble on this news about the violence in Iraq and more numbers (5,500) were added to the list of innocent civilians compromised.

Why do these instances find space on a travel blog, you ask? What of Free Travel would yield if the world around was just a chaotic mayhem, I ask. Where bouts of uncertainty spring up in the locals themselves, where going to office for a lady and getting back is but a never-resigning tension for family and concerned, what would a backpacker run into?

Random pic

Random pic. Keep going.

This was terror and safety, just one part.

Restrictions. How would a free traveller commit to countries where one is expected to produce return tickets before visiting and the details of one’s hosts for each day of the visit in the foreign land? Such annoying gets the part when you come to terms with the visa restrictions for various countries and realize how least wanted is one passport while some others enjoy Visa on Arrival treatment. Here, international relations, economic status of your homeland and the hunch of your belonging to a troubled land work in the background.

 Misguiding. More than often, taking leverage of lesser information at the disposal of a traveller, one is guided but wrongly on the escalated costs, travel mediums, places to visit, accommodation and what not. “Ohh, this is the only way to get there, ma’am”, “You shouldn’t be camping here, wild boars can be expected in the night”, “I’m charging just right sir”, such impact they create because you’ve online portals sure, but this right here is improvising in real time. And if you go by it just to discover it was not so, such disappointment!

It’s stabbing the travel spirit right through the heart with these cases. One becomes more watchful of the news of course to decide on the next destination. Can you repeat today the odysseys from the classics, galloping from one town to the next, easing out in the taverns for the night and wandering off once again at dawn? Okay forget the horses, but can you?

Given that, a free traveller still chooses the life where the place to halt for the night is uncertain. The spirit is strong to be shaken, the addiction is greater to be overcome but it does go down somewhere on the negative side. Do take it though that a free traveller opts for adventure not for danger, for the unseen, not for the last to be seen, and for living, not for … You can always choose to be aloof if not friendly, accommodating if not welcoming and indifferent if not helping. Whether or not, the choice is yours…

And Wild Boars…? Seriously?

Do share what all troubles you on the way and how you get by?


Also Read:
The pilot episode: Why?
My Travel Tales- How I realized the value of money


 

 

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4 thoughts on “Butchering the HEART of Free Travel

  1. well written…worth thinking of…yes it can happen to anybody / anywhere….one can avoid places of unrest when you are aware about it…but when you are in trouble unknowingly…..have faith, don’t panic and find a safer place asap.

  2. “what would a backpacker run into?”, a very thought provoking read!
    My travel plans for Egypt just being canceled, i couldn’t have put it any better myself! I thank you!

    • Oh, sad to hear of the cancellations but exactly was my point. Violence and unrest is ruling at so many places today.
      Glad you liked it.

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