Amritsar, India

Where is the road calling you?

Click a photo above to read about that location or use the search bar to find a specific destination.

Amritsar, India

Our Curious Peers Think She’s Britney Spears!

A life changing experience from October 2012

Wisely we had booked our 24 hour train ride in the A/C sleeping section of the train, avoiding the chaos rumored to accompany the less expensive options available to us.  We arrived at the train station in town and found the free shuttle providing transportation to the famous Golden Temple, said to rival the beauty of the Taj Mahal.  We smashed ourselves into the weathered shuttle, allowing others to invade every inch our personal space to crash the greatest amount of occupaAmritsar, India Donation based lodging Golden Templents into the interior.  Fortunately we wouldn’t endure the warmth of butt cracks and resting of breasts on our shoulders for long, arriving within a five minute walk of the temple.

We opted to stay in a simple accommodation only available to foreigners, offering worn mattresses and steel lockers to secure our belongings and watched relentlessly by guards ensuring we wouldn’t be invaded by the masses of pilgrims surrounding us.  Initially we felt a bit confused, wondering why such measures were necessary.  I wouldn’t be until later that evening we would discover the cause for personal security.  Just outside of our small room filled with other travelers taking advantage of a night’s rest for the small price of a personally determined donation upon departure, a large open space stood between us and the exit to the building we inhabited.  By 9:00 pm, we were literally stepping over bodies sprawled out on the tile floor, families from poverty stricken villages throughout the country simply seeking a space to rest without paying for comfort.

Even in the midst of those scarcely able to afford a multi-day train ride packed into dirty train cAmritsar, India Golden Templears tighter than freshly packaged sardines, the magnificence of the temple shined bright.  We approached the towering walls encompassing the sacred building, dressed in clothing covering our shoulders and knees while covering our heads out of respect.  Not a single visitor was granted entry without their hair covered, forcing me to rock one of my bandannas while adhering to the cultural preferences.  Our flip flops were left outside of the entrance before stepping into a shallow trough of water where each guest “washed” their feet before stepping through the main gate.  My peripheral vision captured the sight of numerous dirt covered toes rinsing in the surprisingly clean water.

We walked slowly through the opening to the temple grounds, lost in a sea of locals shuffling through the wide entryway.  My jaw dropped at the sight of the brilliant golden stature, displayed clearly for all to appreciate.  We walked near the edge of the shallow water surrounding the sacred temple, smiling at one another and lost for a moment it its commanding presence.  I felt a slight tug on my left sleeve, spinning my head to discover a group of young boys requesting a photo with me.  I agreed whole-heartedly, posing for multiple pictures before noticing Jessie had succumb to the same fate, though her cooperation drew far more attention than my own.  She may not have entered as Britany Spears or Lady Gaga donning a leotard scarcely capable of hiding her vagiAmritsar, India Guard Golden Templena, but judging by the gawks of her spectators, she very well could have been.

I stood dumbfounded, observing a line of locals excitedly shifting their weight from one foot to the next, eagerly anticipating their opportunity to capture a lifelong memory.  Young girls rushed to secure the nearest possible position on either side of her.  Women handed her their babies while convincing her to pose for family portraits.  Never had I experienced the life of someone dating a celebrity, but there was a first time for everything.  A typically fifteen minute leisurely walk around the inside of the walls had been transformed into a three hour photo shoot with anxious locals captivated by the blonde-haired, blue-eyed girl so unfamiliar from what anyone had seen.

It seemed every available break from the action provided another opening for the next local family to rush in our direction, requesting their own portrait as she stood centered amongst the gatherings.  Eventually I submitted to the multitude of those seizing the same opportunity, sitting at the water’s edge and grinning as she accepted the gratitude of her newly found fan base.  I found myself remembering how fortunate I was to be with such an amazing partner in life while chuckling to myself at the sight of those next in line nearly too giddy to stand still when taking their turn to stand respeAmritsar, India Jessie posing with a cute babyctfully close to her.

After enough curiosity had been satisfied momentarily, we could continue our fond admiration of the temple we had traveled so far to enjoy.  We rested on the ground, slightly exhausted from providing pleasant memories for those continuously observing our every move, bracing our backs against the solid walls.  I wondered if we would have drawn the same abundance of attention sporting thongs and twirling fire as if entertaining tourists on the beach at an all-inclusive resort.  Each passerby stared intently as they continued their pace, allowing their focus to fix on two of the few tourists incapable of blending in with the crowd, our blue eyes serving as spot lights at the hottest new club in the city.

As darkness fell, we retreated to the relative comfort of our humble abode.  I laid down that evening with unique memories circling through my mind…wondering what our next adventure might have in store for us…



Ella, Sri Lanka

Ella, Sri Lanka

Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia Feature

Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia

Schwedagon, Yangon Header

Yangon, Myanmar

feature Hpaan, Myanmar

Hpa’an, Myanmar

Began Myanmar Feature

Bagan, Myanmar

Feature Inle Lake Mynamar

Inle Lake, Myanmar