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By Matthew Clark
To locals we must have been a site, stale from hours on end in cramped confines, heavy-eyed with jetlag taking over.
Truth is, I don't have anything against sitting on a beach and getting a tan. But beyond the familiar day trip or weekend getaway, there are experiences like this trip that can change perspective. The same things that break you down and wear you out become the nostalgic reminders of an experience I'll never forget.
Out on the edge, we collect memories that last a lifetime.
In India, the busy world meets you with a barrage of horns, spices, barks and music. One night, a local family extended an invite for dinner. Their hospitality comes at the expense of a month's wages, and will be remembered for much longer. Watching a football match in a dark cafe amongst regulars until the early morning hours... special as well.
Now, two months removed from my travels, fat snowflakes fall gently outside my window. Winter's grip is firm on the 49th parallel north, and I'm reminded how far India and Myanmar are. Despite it being another bitter cold Canadian morning, my mind remains fresh with the energy, excitement and intensity of a busy bazaar.
I often tell myself that I'll move on from these adventures. After all, I'd enjoy the comforts of English speaking towns and local haunts. But before long, that map in the corner of my office catches my eye. I start to fidget. I dream that I'm back on an ancient bus, winding around high mountain switchbacks with no idea what's around the next bend.
Prizes generously provided by OLIVERS, Flight001, The Motley, Sidetracked Magazine, Moore & Giles and Need.