An Evening in Paris
Travelling around the world was always fascinating and indeed a dream for me being an intrepid explorer. As a child I used to travel within the state and was very excited whenever I came across unique places. As I grew up I could travel to different states and felt even happier to see the diversity. I wondered if India itself has so much of diversity within the country how interesting would it be to explore the world outside.
My first journey outside India started with Malaysia followed by Indonesia, Singapore, Tokyo, Bangkok and Hong Kong. I travelled down to different countries in ASPAC, interacted with people and tried to understand their culture, customs and civilization. My curiosity to explore the world beyond the country & continent (saat samandar paar…) increased even more as I learnt more and more about the world.
Europe is a dream destination for most of the people from other parts of the world. Greek, Roman, British, French, German, Dutch and many more great mighty empires have glorified the history of Europe. Although the mighty kingdoms and empires have vanished eventually but the monumental palaces and museums of royal heritage have made them memorable. In today’s scenario these kingdoms have turned into economic, financial and business empires.
The region is sparsely populated and scientifically advanced thanks to the education system and research acumen which still makes the region a technological and research heaven.
Germany is known for its technology, Paris for Fashion and Brussels for its strategic location is considered to be the center of EU. Visiting Europe was a rich experience for me. It was an altogether different feeling.Paris is a quintessential city. Although Eiffel tower is its most popular tourist destination but I only realized after roaming around that there was so much to see –The Louvre, Notre Dame, Arc De Triomphe, Musee d’Orsay, Disneyland, Sacre-Coeur, Sainte – Chapelle to name a few. The city center has very unique quaint look with gothic architecture and many antique heritage buildings. Paris is a nice honeymoon destination which was evident from the fact that you can see a slew of Lovey dovey couples in love arms around each other cuddling on the streets of Paris. The royal heritage, exuberant shopping malls for fashion, apparel and beauty geeks, exotic locations and the yummy cuisine with delicacies made it a spectacular evening in Paris, I missed honey though moon was there late night as the sun set is around 9:00 p.m. On top of it I could figure out a shop with my name although French spelling which made me to feel wow I am international.
Brussels is another place for applause. The grand place Grote Markt with grand guildhalls and large edifices and multi cuisines although I could just enjoy the sight as finding Indian veg restaurant was not easy due to limited time. I did enjoy the veg salad fresh and tasty may be the farmers prefer organic farming. The weather was pleasant fortunately and dining in the open restaurant with sunlight in night was amazing. The hospitality of Belgian people is remarkable. The moment you ask them the address or which bus takes you there, they will leave no effort to explain you no matter how fluent they are in English.God was very considerate towards this part. Beautiful landscapes, well planned townships, handsome people (knappe mensen), developed economy coupled with equally reciprocating people by efficient law enforcement, discipline to abide by the rules of land.
Whatever said and done education and research paved the way for technological advancement and economic rise which in turn led to peace and prosperity, of course their conservative approach for procreation and free hand for recreation is the key for the success. And as a normal human tendency I did compare Europe with Singapore. Fortunately Singapore is the only country in Asia which is at par with CE (Conformité Européenne).
Last but not the least I found my answer why foreigners used to wonder my being a full time vegetarian. It was just after visiting many countries I could learn that it happens only in India – the vegetables are cooked with exquisite spices and culinary herbs finally fried in oil on low flame as hurry burry spoils the curry to make it yummy mouthwatering unlike the veg avatar in rest of the world where a veg dish is nothing more than a raw salad or half cooked vegetables which though healthy diet has bland taste and makes people wonder how can one be a an outright vegetarian.
The world is a playground, and life is pushing my swing.