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The Story Of My Tattoo

On my journeys so far, I’ve met many people from different walks of life. While in college, most of my visits to home would involve encounters with foreigners in Hampi. I used to take a train to my hometown Bellary which passed by Hampi. And I would most often find some people from far and wide around me. I used to wonder what motivates these people to leave the comforts of their homes and live in a foreign land for months! I kind of envied them!

I used to inevitably get into a conversation with most of them and yeah, I’ve had some memorable ones.

Most of these people had tattoos on them. Tribal designs, stars, butterflies, Chinese and Indian script, and the list goes on. And the curious cat that I am, I always used to ask them what these permanent ink marks meant. And boy! I was taken aback to hear so many stories behind those tattoos!

My body is my journal, and my tattoos are my story.― Johnny Depp
My body is my journal, and my tattoos are my story.― Johnny Depp

And that’s when I realised that tattoos talk! That this form of art is often personal and complicated. And that a tattoo is a symbol of a story that is waiting to be told.

And that’s when the thought of getting a tattoo on myself entered my mind! But it was forgotten for a while in the hustle and bustle of life. After almost two years, an impromptu conversation with friends about tattoos rekindled my interest in getting a tattoo. And this time it was strong!

I introspected on what I’m most passionate about. The first thing that struck me was TRAVEL! Yeah, I wanted a tattoo depicting my love for travel!
So, there I was! Knowing what I wanted in just a few minutes!

Then began my search for a travel related tattoo!

While browsing the internet, one particular image caught my eye and I immediately knew I wanted it. It was a pair of FOOTPRINTS!

My birthday was coming up and I felt like giving myself a present in the form of a tattoo I would love!

tattoo_cake

So, I did it.  I went along with VJ and found a tattoo artist that I liked, discussed my thoughts and made the poor guy do the stencil three times before I was happy.  Then I sat back, stomach churning, but with a resolved mind that I was going through with it – I’d already come this far.

tattoo

The footprints are, to me, a symbol of my love of travel.
They have inspired the name of my blog too!
It was interesting to watch the tattoo being done. The pain isn’t much! Believe me.

So, I now have a pair of footprints just above my ankle. I want to travel the world and leave my footprints on the sands of time! Many people have questioned my decision of getting a tattoo. What if you don’t want it at a later point in time?

But I’m sure there won’t be any such time! I’m really very happy with it.  It’s mine.  It’s for me and I made it happen!

Do you have a tattoo? Or plan to get one for yourself? If so, what would you get? Do you like mine?

Cheers,
Gayathri

30 before 30

I’m sure many of us have watched the movie The Bucket List where two terminally ill men escape from a hospital with a wish list of things-to-do before they die.

Well, making such a list was always on my mind for sometime. No, I’m not terminally ill! That’s why I call my list 30 before 30 which includes all those things I wish to do before I turn 30!

30 before 30

Some of you may argue that there need not be a time limit/constraint on the things you wish to do and that they should be done at your own pace. I do agree! But don’t we have the tendency to procrastinate things out of our habitual laziness? Most of us do!

And more importantly these are the things that I have always wanted to do! And due to my procrastination and lack of opportunity, I have not been able to do them so far. And friends, life is too short to wake up with regrets, right? After all, the days are long but years are short!

The joy that fills up your heart when you strike each thing off the list is simply great! I also feel that when you actually sit and write such a list that you really know what your heart wants.

Before I share my bucket list with all of you, here is something that Mark Twain once said which is also one of the reasons I jumped and wrote my list.

Twenty years from now you’ll be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones that you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sail.
Explore.
Dream.
Discover.

I made this list a few months ago and that’s why I have already crossed few things off the list. Believe me it’s fun to do that!

The mystical land and water of Ladakh
The mystical land and water of Ladakh
  1. Start a blog. ( Done Dana Done!!!)
  2. Visit Ladakh by road.
  3. Get a tattoo! (Got it!) More about the tattoo coming soon. Here is the story of my tattoo.
  4. Run a marathon. ( If not full, at least a half marathon. I’ve only done a few 10k runs so far)
  5. Play an active role in an NGO which supports a cause I believe in.
  6. Do a bungee jump. (Just did a 150ft jump! ). Aiming for a greater height. 🙂
  7. Learn to play a musical instrument.
  8. Learn to swim. (Almost there!)
  9. Go scuba diving. (Woooo! What an experience it was! Read about it here)
  10. Get really fit! How to measure this? Maybe shed those extra pounds and reach my ideal weight.
  11. Finish at least 10 century rides on my cycle.
  12. Complete the 100 strangers project.
  13. Cross from one country to another on foot. (From Poland to Czech Republic we did!!)
  14. Gift my parents an overseas trip.
  15. Learn to drive confidently and go on a road trip.
  16. Go backpacking. (That’s what we have been doing since the last few months!! More details here)
  17. Give a talk on India in a foreign land! (Been so lucky to do this. More details here)
  18. Read at least 15 books.
  19. Camp on an island.
  20. Learn a new language. (Just started with Tamil! )
  21. Try couchsurfing. (We just love it!! Check it out here)
  22. Visit at least 15 states in India.
  23. Get a teaching job.
  24. Move into our own home!
  25. Learn to ride a motorcycle. (I mean a geared one)
  26. Go on a solo trip.
  27. Visit Dharamshala and the Golden temple of Amritsar.
  28. Visit at least four of these places- Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, North eastern states of India.
  29. Get featured in the media. (Check it out here)
  30. Celebrate my 30th birthday in style!

I have less than 2 years before I turn 30! There really ain’t no time to waste.

And yeah, one of my favourite travel blogger Neelima’s post on the same topic was an inspiration too! 🙂
How many of you have similar lists? Any suggestions on mine?

Cheers!
Gayathri.