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04. Jul, 2014

Chailogue launched: Chai chronicles of a traveler

Chailogue launched: Chai chronicles of a traveler

 

10390312 256507854537271 7421204466335105921 n Chailogue launched: Chai chronicles of a traveler

Chai (tea) became an important part of my travels across Pakistan. Not just the place, but inspiring common people of Pakistan with whom i shared my cup of tea. I have launched a dedicated series of stories that revolve around chai during my travels in Pakistan. You can follow the series at: www.Chailogue.com.

Post in your comments and do give me your feedback.

07. Oct, 2013

3 weird myths people have about me

3 weird myths people have about me

I am a storyteller, a traveler, i love tea, i work and save to travel more from time to time. I am always bombarded with questions from people having different perceptions about me. I try to clarify things via mail and now finally decided to write a blog post about it. Though the list is long, but there are 3 most weird myths people have about me :

1. Your work as a tour operator/guide

“So when are you taking your next trip? I so want to join your group.”  I DON’T work as a tour operator or a tour guide. I do travel a lot but that doesn’t make me a tour operator.  Yes i can guide you by sharing my travel experiences but i can’t make itineraries for you. I travel randomly. I leave home with a vague idea about my destination. How can i plan it for you?

2. You are a chai addict.

No doubt i love chai (tea) but that doesn’t mean that i survive only on chai. I have had beautiful experiences of my life around chai. Evening time with family was always chai time when Abu would get home from work and sit with the family for chit chat. During my school days, i would often meet my friends and we would go for chai gathering in evenings. While traveling, the bus driver always stops at chai hotel for chai. It is a mandatory thing that revolved around every day of my life. I enjoy tea. 2 cups a day and if i am having too much of it then not more than 5 which is extreme when i have to meet different people in a day. I enjoy tea. Thats it. I AM NOT A CHAI ADDICT. or Does that make me one?

3. You are super rich hence you travel a lot

“Dear Danial. I love what you do. i wish i could do the same but i don’g have enough money. I work at the bank and use all my savings to travel to Thailand every year for vacation, spend nights in 5 star resorts doing nothing but watching TV. I wish i was rich like you to travel”.

Thank you! but your perception of travel is i assume “luxury travel” that you take once a year to escape your cubicle life and spend all your money you’ve saved all year in traveling abroad, a business class ticket and a luxury hotel with a nice swimming pool.Thats what i don’t do. If i am taking assignments that provide me travel, that doesn’t make me rich. And if i earn some money and save the rest to spend it on an another adventure, again that doesn’t make me rich. Don’t make money an excuse for not traveling.

The list goes on and on. I am sure people would still ask me questions related to that and  I enjoy answering icon smile 3 weird myths people have about me So what is your question/myth about me? icon razz 3 weird myths people have about me

13. Jul, 2013

A starry night & the second highest mountain

A starry night & the second highest mountain

As i have always mentioned in my articles, K2 is a shy mountain. It’s always hidden behind clouds and if you are lucky it might sneak out for a while.
To view that mountain, i trekked for 6 long days starting from Skardu town and reached Concordia camp site. During the first night, while every other trekker went to sleep, i sneaked out of my tent to see how the second highest mountain looks like under stars.

k2 concordia danial shah 141 A starry night & the second highest mountain

K2 hidden behind clouds, from Concordia campsite

 

Initially it was pitch-dark, i used my flashlight to find my way, skip rocks and went to an elevation, a place where i could easily spot K2. I started to setup my camera on tripod while found myself lost in that area.

 

k2 concordia danial shah 16 A starry night & the second highest mountain

Mitre peak (6017m) shining under stars

 

I got scared. I had never been scared of the places while travelling. i have been to places, felt things in my surroundings, felt things happening to me, could be super natural or whatever, but this time it was way too different.

The mightiness of nature overtook me. I found myself in a different world.

Those ten minutes i was not in this world.

It was too difficult for me to grasp the hold of that reality around me.

What i saw was silhouettes of giant big cony mountains all around me, from front to back. I gazed at all of them and could see nothing but black huge structures with snow shining on top. And above them i saw a different world. Millions of stars, not just bright but colourful stars, i saw galaxies and it was very easy to spot them all with naked eye. In my front was K2 hidden under stars.

10 minutes were too difficult for me to bear such moments of glory.

I got scared, I was alone and without any further delay, i packed my camera and went back to sleep in my tent.

Have you ever had any such experience?

22. Nov, 2012

Never let someone else live your dream

Never let someone else live your dream

vigne glacier danial shah Never let someone else live your dream

 

It has happened to me many times and now is the time i think i should say that publicly  People have been calling, texting and mailing me, telling me how lucky i am to do what i am doing. They want to do it themselves as well, and they start comparing their lives with me.

Please, DO NOT compare yourself with mine. You are awesome, you have your own life, your own set of rules, your own way of living, your own dreams, don’t see someone else’s life and wish to make that yours. I tried that and its of no use. I have gone through my own experiences and you have to go through your own.

Find yourself, dig deep into your heart, see what your circumstances are, how strong you are inside, what opportunities do you have, and then give it a start.

But never compare your life to someone else’s. Never let someone else live your dream, live it yourself.

 

-Danial Shah

11. Sep, 2012

In between fantasy and reality

In between fantasy and reality

I just came out of my hotel room, its dark outside  and i started to walk on the road. There are no street lights and i can see giant mountain silhouettes all around. With each step, i am gaining a distance between me and my hotel. It is black pitch dark. I am walking under the light of zillion stars. For a moment, i felt scared. This is so unlike i have experienced in the city. I have to go back to my hotel.

star trail pakistan1 In between fantasy and reality

 

I couldn’t understand what was so scary about it. Was that the mightiness of nature or the dark odd surrounding?

[at the hotel lawn]

I grabbed a chair, rested my neck at back and started gazing at the sky. I see a lot of stars, shining and sparkling all over. After few moments, i found myself lost in those stars, far away from reality,into a fantasized world. It was very difficult. The sky was all shining as if there is some celebration going on. I felt as if those stars grabbed and pulled me towards them. Or the sky came closer to me. While lost into them, i felt my heart beat getting faster and tears dripping down my eyes. For the first time in my life, i felt alive….

June 19, 2012 – (From my travel diary – Yasin Valley, Gilgit-Baltistan)