“Avin and I met through Facebook. Both of us hail from the quaint town of Mangalore and when we understood that our views and ideas aligned, we decided to tie the knot. The blessing out of this union came to be our twins – Elena and Ethan.
Even as first-time parents, we did not want to over-educate ourselves with self-help books and courses. We wanted to learn the nuances of it all through the years. But this laid-back attitude of ours was not conforming with the society at large.
I still remember back when we were living in an apartment, I used to take the kids down to the play area for an evening stroll. They were all of two and I would have other parents walk up to me to ask what school I was planning to put my kids in. It used to baffle me endlessly – this constant pressure to be on top of our game always. I did not understand this hurry and this fast-paced life.
This is where Avin and I decided that we would not put that pressure on our kids. Discipline and structure could be learnt in a lot of different ways. My children were just learning to talk and while I couldn’t decipher what they were saying, the thought of leaving them under the care of a teacher away from home seemed overwhelming to me.
We started to home school our children. At first, the term homeschooling did sound alien to us but with time and enough trial and error, we fell into a comfortable rhythm. Moving to a farm we owned in Mangalore and building our own mud house seemed like the right thing to do.
Even before kids, Avin and I had driven on bikes to different places – especially the ones less explored by humans and which had some association with Nature. After kids, we commenced our travels once again when they were just 6 months old.
Through the initial phases, it was a learning phase for us but the body’s natural immunity started to build through all our trips. My kids did fall sick but then they adapted with time. We started to explore places on our own without a specific set agenda or a timeline. We would choose a place and stay there till the time we felt that we had experienced all there is to experience.
Initially, we used to camp in tents but now we have altered our car a little to suit the needs that we bunk in our cars only. Each trip always brings with it so much learning both for us parents as well as kids. Immersing ourselves in new cultures, food, water and experiences has given us something that our urban life can never.
There are questions from everywhere asking us if we are doing the right thing but we have struck a fine balance with it. We remain firm in our ideologies that the doubts don’t perturb us anymore. Avin works in IT so he takes calls in between travels and works at night and early mornings. I also take care of our farm and the produce from it also in a way contributes to our income.
We had to adopt a lot of different concepts like minimalism, and sustainable living to accommodate the life that we live but we aligned to it effortlessly. Avin often quotes this phrase which goes like, ‘Leave no trace’. This is something we ensure in all our travels that we don’t leave anything behind that can potentially harm the environment.
The most adventurous aspects of our travels are that we always choose the road less travelled. Google maps has an option where one can choose roads that do not have tolls and this has been one of the most pleasant surprises of all our travels. We have discovered treasure troves of places unspoilt by human civilization and also discovered quaint towns and villages we never knew existed.
Our existing lifestyle comes with a lot of compromises and sacrifices but it’s the one that we chose to build with our kids. For what travel offers you can never be replaced by anything else in this world.”
#life #journey #inspire #motivation #chennai #humansofmadras