"Indians have a huge appetite for travel experiences"
1. What inspired you to write the book — Wise Enough To Be Foolish, and how was the writing experience?
Some time in 2010, I was on a cruise with some friends and I was telling them about a travel industry-related book I was co-authoring with an international author. They persuaded me to write a memoir based on my life instead. This is how Wise Enough to be Foolish was born. I took exactly four days and four nights to write the book, but after that I took close to two years to rewrite it, and edit it from a book my friends could read to a book a reader would like to go through. As for the business book, it hasn’t progressed beyond chapter three in all these years.
2. You love to travel a lot and write about it too. How have travel trends changed?
I have been to over 35 countries and my bucket list of destinations and experiences is not even half complete. I feel that the love of travel is ingrained in the human species but now due to exposure from media and business, our palate of potential experiences is much richer. The interesting thing about India is that we have a huge appetite for varied experiences — from the usual run of the mill trips to luxury and adventure. I founded the Active Holiday Company to offer travellers like me — who want to explore the real destination with a dash of adventure and opportunities to explore on their own, or in small groups of like-minded travellers.
3. Any suggestions for young travel writers, or any tips on travelling alone?
In this world of consumerism, I feel that the world has become very homogenous — most places have the same shopping and eating experiences — supported by big global brands. I think this erodes true culture and I would urge people to support and conserve the local communities. Travel writers should go beyond the facade and do more for the destination. As far as travelling alone is concerned, it depends on the destination. There is a huge trend of single travellers wanting to get together and travel alone and many outfits, including the Active Holiday Company offer that option.
Wise Enough To Be Foolish, Gauri Jayaram, Jaico Books.