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Ever since we started writing Bruised Passports, we are asked a lot of personal questions. Our inbox is full of messages asking li’l things about us. So we thought we would take a break from ruminating about local customs and swooning over local food from some random corner of the world and address some of the most frequently asked questions by our readers.
Here’s the story of two madcaps who enjoy travelling the world, armed only with wonder in their eyes and restlessness in their souls. Hope you enjoy it
The two of us in Croatia – 2012
1) When did you guys meet?
Let’s get the cringe-worthy stuff out of the way first shall we?! We first met when I was an overweight and bespectacled teenager and Vid was a super geek. That was 16 years ago and we were both in high school in New Delhi *sigh*.
The two of us circa 2007
2) So did the sparks fly?
Errr NO. To the contrary. We were great friends right from the day we met. We saw each other through high-school crushes, random dates, and other such. We started dating each other only 4 years later
Both of us in Singapore circa 2007
3) So how and when did UK happen?
Aah this is a fun story that involves a lot of countries. Once upon a time, Vid used to live in Singapore. At the time, I used to teach English Literature at the University of Delhi and I loved my job.Vid moved to Delhi so we could be together – this lasted all of two months 😉
Shortly after Vid moved to Delhi, I got an amazing scholarship to pursue the degree of my dreams – Phd At University of Leeds. So off I went to England. Before I knew it, Vid resigned from his job in Delhi and landed at my doorstep in UK. Yipee
Both of us in Delhi
4) When did you guys get married?
One fine day, 10 years after we first started dating, we decided we wanted to get married. We were sure we did not want the Big Fat Indian Wedding. The traditional Indian wedding ceremony is usually romanticised in mainstream media but it has a whole host of customs and traditions steeped in patriarchy and we don’t agree with it. Never ones to follow the herd, we opted for a really simple civil ceremony in New Delhi – the kind where you go to the court in a pair of denims, you get the idea
We didn’t register for gifts for our wedding or accept gold (a staple at Indian weddings!). Of course our families couldn’t live without giving us a gift or two. Guess what we asked for? A Macbook, which we still use for blogging and a Nikon DSLR camera for our travels These two were, without a doubt, the best gifts ever !!
No wedding is complete without a party. We followed our visit to the court with an epic party and had the time of our lives with family and friends. Our wedding card will tell you more about the nature of the party. Needless to say, the next day was spent curing mammoth hangovers 😉
Our wedding card – the outside (left) and the inside (right) :)
5) Clearly what you do is what you love:) But when do you guys actually ‘work’? Or is this full time work for you two now? Wouldn’t it be challenging to fund all these trips? Sponsorships?
For 7 years while travelling, Vid worked as a business analyst at University College London and I worked as an English Literature academic based in London. It isn’t easy to juggle travelling and working, but the key lies in prioritising: We made a conscious decision of opting for jobs that pay less than the average corporate job but were flexible and made it easy for us to take time off work. It is just about priorities.
We have been saving our pennies to travel to different corners of the globe and travelling a lot for over 10-12 years now. Since starting Bruised Passports in 2013, we get the occasional sponsored hotel stay or holiday, but we continue to spend our own hard-earned money on travelling the world. In 2015, we quit our jobs to become full-time travel bloggers.We work as a travel photographer and travel writer duo to sustain ourselves while we are on the road.Some people like to save for houses, some like to splash on cars or jewellery, some like to party, we love travelling. It’s really as simple as that
Both of us on a tiny island off the coast of Africa :)
6) How do you get so many days off work?
The work-life balance in Europe is much better than that in Asia or America – here (in UK) everybody gets 27 days of annual leave. Add to that a handful of bank holidays (public holidays) and a generous helping of 52 weekends – that’s a whopping 140 holidays in a year. We used to make use of every one of those days to travel near or far Things have changed now because we have the whole year to ourselves
7) You guys write so much about food. I know you love experimenting with all sorts of food when you travel. What about holiday weight?
Haha – reading this question made us giggle. Aye, we do love our food. Truth is, we eat healthy most days when we are in London (save the endless tubs of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream that are devoured over weekends, but those don’t count right? 😉 ).
We love our green smoothies and go through phases of juicing, but the only reason we don’t switch to a completely vegan or raw diet is because we firmly believe that experimenting with local food is the key to understanding a culture. It’s hard to think of Spain without jamon serrano, Brazil without steak, or Germany without bratwurst. We can’t help binging while travelling but we hit the gym with a vengeance on getting back. Want a sneak peak into our diet in London? Check out this post we published last week
What’s Italy without pasta eh?! :)
8) Any advice for the first time traveller?
Clichéd as it may sound, if you feel like doing something, you should. If you love travelling (or for that matter the idea of travelling), you should make every possible effort to do so. You might have to sacrifice something or make compromises to travel, but as they say, nothing in life comes free. As with any other experience, it’s best to start small – maybe a weekend trip to a nearby place or a 4 day trip to the neighbouring country. This will give you an idea of how much you enjoy travelling.
Trust us when we say this – travelling to new places and meeting people from different cultures will give you a perspective to life that no text book can. It has taught us to be ambitious, confident, patient, sensitive, and above all, well-rounded people. In the words of Prophet Mohammed: Don’t tell me how educated you are, tell me how much you have travelled. Touché !
Vid’s travel themed birthday cake :)
And before you go, here’s a short video of our shenanigans in London – it’ll tell you guys a bit more about us
Leave us a comment below if you have any other questions – we’ll try our best to answer them We LOVE hearing from you guys !