Stay Connected! But How?

Stay connected! But how? 

More than often people pose a question 🙋 to me - asking- how do you develop the contacts? How do you sustain the contacts for long time across the globe? I think people marvel at my unique attitude. Obviously it’s easier  said than done. It needs conscious efforts to remain ‘connected’. It is not at all easy because you need to be passionate about people.  Normally I celebrate anniversary of our meeting. The Facebook offers ‘memories’ feature and I exploit it. Basically I create a ‘FB Post’ when I meet and then onwards all people ‘crops up’ on anniversary. I just download the photos and share with them on anniversary date. Indirectly I tell them ‘thanks again for hospitality’. This gesture goes long way for sustainable relationships and pleasure in mine. 

However sometimes I do take extra step. Let me tell you two stories 

*Rasheed, Srinagar *

I met Rasheed in Srinagar in Dec 2019 when I was visiting my niece and Captain son-in-law.  Rasheed happened to be good freind of the duo. Upon request, Rasheed showcased me the Srinagar in his car. He is decent, soft spoken and cooperative. He could guess my needs - needs of backpacker. We explored that area of Srinagar where normal visitor won’t go for known reasons. I had seen the fort. I had seen the old wooden houses - 300 years old - an Islamic architecture. We ate very very local. Believe me, without Rasheed I would not have explored deeply. We chatted a lot too. 

Today, my brother is landing in Srinagar. I took opportunity to celebrate our friendship. I shared a small gift 💝 - a miniature Quran ( book 📕1 inch by 1 inch) bought from Saudia, a pack of Chiwada and dry grapes 🍇. Cherishing the hospitality was my pleasure. I don’t know if we are going to meet in person in this lifetime, but we are ‘connected forever’, that’s sure. 

*Mursal Azizi, Kabul, Afghanistan 🇦🇫 *

I happened to Meet Miss Mursal in Goa Film Festival, November 2019. She was taking degree education in animation at Cochin. She is beautiful, soft spoken and cultured. Her fiancé is in Kabul working for World Bank then. They were engaged. In between the breaks of two films 🎥 we used to chat. I had very specific interest in knowing ‘Afaganistan’ . When I expressed my desire to visit her country, she spontaneously invited me. She assured that either her uncle or her fiancé would accompany me to ‘Buddha’s Ruin Bamiyam Vally’ and Kandahar. I was delighted then. She was impressed by knowing my deep knowledge of Afghanistan 🇦🇫. We were connected thru FB and she shared her animation illustrations there after. 

Yesterday I was disturbed due to Taliban Developments in Kabul, Afghan. I was worried about her well-being. I contacted her via messenger and asked ‘ if she is safe? What about family? ‘. When Talebani were capturing city of Kabul, she confirmed that ‘ yes we are safe. Not allowed 🚫 to get out’.  I felt ‘sigh of relief’. Look at snap shots of chat. It gave me solace (

a person or thing that makes you feel better or happier when you are sad or disappointed). I don’t know if I am going to visit her in this lifetime, but she will remain my best freind forever. 

This is the way ‘I stay connected with World - forever’. I don’t know if I am on top of the mind of my friends… but *all friends are Foremost in my thoughts 💭- they are my concern or priority.*

The ball game of Backpacking is hard. But the ‘end’ is happy. 



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