Day One

I sold off or gave away most of what I owned back then, and put the rest into storage. When I left St. John’s, Newfoundland for Dublin, Ireland in the summer of 2007, working holiday visa in hand, it was with a backpack, a laptop bag, and two small suitcases filled with the gear I’d need to tattoo; my occupation at the time and the way I’ve funded my travels to date.

Flash forward four and a half years and both my luggage and destination look considerably different. The backpack is the same, though its contents have switched up a fair bit. I certainly didn’t have Malaria meds and a UV water sterilizer packed when I was heading off to Ireland. And the two suitcases have been dropped, leaving the laptop bag as my only other piece of luggage. Well, unless you count the motorcycle helmet I’m dragging around in anticipation of the Enfield I’ll pick up in Rishikesh, north of my current location: Delhi, India.

South Delhi to be entirely accurate. I arrived at a guest house here after a ride in a cab that was little more than an auto-rickshaw. Pre-paid for at the airport, the approximately 24 km ride had cost 350 rupees, or around 7 Canadian dollars. My flight arrived in the dead of night, which meant that, as I laid down in the guest house bed that evening, I’d no real idea what would be outside of my window come dawn. Continue reading