Tell us something about yourself and your background
Well, Roshni Punjabi. I am an Entrepreneur, running a couple of businesses in Mumbai. I am a public speaker and an academic and corporate trainer apart from being a solo traveler. I love to move around, talk to people and explore places and different cuisines. My work and passion for travel has taken me to various places across the country but I still have many places, domestic as well as across borders to explore and check out off my bucket list.
How many countries and Indian states have you travelled?
I have traveled to the African continent wherein I have been to Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya and the Central African Republic apart from my within India travels to around 7 states including Gujarat, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, West Bengal, Goa, Delhi and Maharashtra.
Any interesting travel moment or incidence:
Many, but the one that I would like to share here is of my recent Solo Travel to Himachal while I was traveling from Dehradun to Mussoorie. It was in May 2018 and the summers were scorching. I had planned a trip to Himachal including Dehradun, Mussoorie starting from Jaipur via Delhi. With the temperatures soaring to 40-45 degrees, I was carrying only comfortable summer casuals unaware of the weather conditions at my destination. Dehradun was comfortable with around 23degrees and after a day of hop skip and jump in the city I planned to move further uphill to Mussoorie when it suddensly started raining and the climate changed in minutes. The heavy downpour did not deter me and I was still
very keen to make this journey without an iota of idea how I would be managing things as it was an instant plan without any pre booking or hotel checks. Being suggested by a fellow bus traveler who was a local and a daily commuter, I checked up a decent hotel and made an online booking and patiently waited for the bus to arrive. It seemed the weather would be getting worse, but nonetheless, I started my journey in the bus that arrived within a couple of minutes. The actual test began then. The windows of the bus were open and jammed, and as we moved uphill, the wind grew to be fiercer and chilling. By the time we reached Mussoorie after a journey of around 100 minutes, my nose facing the wind was
almost frozen and my hands numb. The first thing I did when the bus halted at Mussoorie was rush to the first woolen clothes store just opposite to the bus stop and purchase a warm jacket for myself.
Tell us about your fears and anxieties when traversing solo. How you keep them at bay?
Being a female solo travelers, ignore as you might, still there are fears of venturing into dark unknown alleys or taking the wrong turns or being in the wrong company. But then, trust on god and the people and believe in goodness is the only thing you can do. I do not carry peper sprays or weapons but yes, it is up to us to keep our own safety and keep some closed people informed of our whereabouts and stay connected and make the most of the technology and gadgets that we so frequently use.
What’s your favourite travel quote?
Its rather a line from a song than a travel quote “ mera Falsafa, kandhe pe mera basta, Chala main jahan, le chala mujhe Rasta”
What’s the strangest thing you tried on your travelling days?
I keep doing weird and strange things on everyday basis, so truly cannot exactly remember if there was anything strange that I did on my travel days.
Any travel tips for the readers?
Try exploring more on foot rather than local guided tours, explore local places, delicacies and interact more with local people and other travelers. You never know, what you might stumble upon. Keep your eyes, ears and mind open to welcome new experiences.