Meet The Couple Who Quit Their Jobs To Travel Across India On Just 500 Bucks A Day | HolidayIQ Blog

Meet The Couple Who Quit Their Jobs To Travel Across India On Just 500 Bucks A Day

theheatanddustproject.com theheatanddustproject.com
Devapriya Roy and Saurav Jha talk to HolidayIQ about quitting their jobs to travel across India and surviving on 500 rupees a day.

Meet The Couple Who Quit Their Jobs To Travel Across India On Just 500 Bucks A Day:

  1. India
  2. Jaisalmer (Rajasthan)
  3. Jodhpur (Rajasthan)
  4. Mathura (Uttar Pradesh)

1. They Quit Their Jobs To Explore What They Were Passionate About

They Quit Their Jobs To Explore What They Were Passionate Aboutsource: theheatanddustproject.com

Devapriya Roy and her husband Saurav Jha, tied to their nine-to-six, mall-going, office-tripping identities, decided to quit their jobs to surrender their lives to their obsessions. Devapriya shares, “As far as Saurav was concerned, travelling the country at length was definitely the first step to understanding what the Preamble to the Constitution calls ‘India that is Bharat’. Clearly, studio discussions were not enough. For me, it seemed that seeing the country is important for anyone with aspirations to writing. Rajashekhara’s Kavyamimamsa tells the apprentice poet to travel the length and breadth of the country.”

This must be inspiring you right now, but, they had their constraints too. Money. Although they had already written their first books, they had paltry savings. Saurav Jha shares, “By the time we decided on taking the plunge - quit our jobs, move our stuff back to Calcutta where our parents lived from Delhi - we had already written our first books. There was never any doubt in our minds that we wanted the adventures to be chronicled in a book. Fortunately, we found a publisher who was also willing to take the plunge with us.”

2. The Couple Travelled & Survived On 500 Rupees A Day Throughout India

The Couple Travelled & Survived On 500 Rupees A Day Throughout Indiasource: Jaisalmer, Rajasthan

What stops most people from travelling was taken as a challenge by these two. Although, they were working in the field when they wanted to, the constrained budget was not much of a choice. They lived their life in Rs. 500 a day. Mind you, 500 bucks for both of them that includes bed and board. Saurav shares, “The budget bit was a given, of course. Living in the whole yuppie fashion meant that however much we earned, our savings were paltry. We had to make it last as long as we could. But more than this, we wanted to be free in our travels. Divest everything that kept us tied to our nine-to-six, mall-going, office-tripping identities. There is nothing freer than travelling with no frills.”

3. They Wrote A Book: The Heat And Dust Project

They Wrote A Book: The Heat And Dust Projectsource: The Heat and Dust Project

The best part about travelling is, it gives you some kickass stories to tell. Written by Devapriya Roy and Saurav Jha about their journey through India in Rs. 500 a day, ‘The Heat And Dust Project’ is an ultimate compilation of stories that you’d love to hear. “India is full of wacky things! Every street corner has something wacky going on. The book documents a whole host of wacky stuff – and also an array of wacky characters, for example, our friends the Israeli twins, Motty and Zvika Hillel, with whom we spent a lot of time in Rajasthan and in Paharganj, the backpacker hub of Delhi,” share Devapriya and Saurav.

4. India Is Home To Stories In Every Nook & Corner

India Is Home To Stories In Every Nook & Cornersource: Barsana, Uttar Pradesh

When asked about scary stories from their journey, Devapriya shares, “There is good-scary and bad-scary. I’d say, good-scary was on a night-time cruise down the Yamuna at Mathura, hearing ghost stories from our boatman. Bad-scary was an incident in a bus to Jaisalmer, when a co-passenger was nearly assaulted and we became a part of that whole episode. This episode provides the backbone of what is arguably the most important section of our book, called ‘How to Write in Indian’.”

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5. Hence Proved: Travel Is The Ultimate Relationship Test

Hence Proved: Travel Is The Ultimate Relationship Testsource: Manaspratim Mitra

Travelling with you partner is considered to be the ultimate relationship test and it wasn’t any different for Devapriya and Saurav. Devapriya shares, “We joke that the real sub-title of the book is ‘The Ultimate Relationship Test’! The thing is, once one has travelled like that, the very idea of life afterwards becomes a contingent thing, a work in progress. So it’s difficult to say how it worked out, as far as the idea of us is concerned. You know? It’s still working out. But one thing I can tell you, the relationship test has lots of incredible after-effects. For example, together, one will have such a mix of bizarre, exhausting and superb moments between the couple, garnered from the journey, that the texture of your relationship too will become more layered than before.”

6. Ultimate Travel Advice For Aspiring Travellers

Ultimate Travel Advice For Aspiring Travellerssource: Jodhpur, Rajasthan

1. Travel light. Everything can be got anywhere!

2. Start talking to your co-passengers in local buses or trains.

3. Look out for those little booklets about local deities or myths and legends, with trademark thin pages and entertaining spelling – they have the best stories.

4. Don’t travel so perfectly that there are no regrets. In hindsight, what you didn’t do becomes as piquant as what you did.

5.  Enjoy your travelling selves; you will cease to be those people the instant the journey is over.

7. What Is Travel?

What Is Travel?source: Mathura, Uttar Pradesh

When asked about how their trip changed their perspectives towards travel, Devapriya Roy puts it sweet and short, “You start seeing travel as life itself, not as an interruption of life.”

8. Their Trail To Wisdom

Their Trail To Wisdomsource: Abhishek Chaterjee

Taking the classic hippie circuit from New Delhi's Paharganj, the couple has travelled from the Himalayas to Kanyakumari. In their first run, they started their journey from Himachal Pradesh, covering Dharamshala, McLeodganj and Kangra. Further, they moved south towards the land of colour amidst the desert - Rajasthan, covering destinations like Jaipur, Ajmer, Pushkar and Jodhpur. The infectious travel bug drifted them to discover the western borders of Bharat, that include Jaisalmer, Barmer and Sanchor. Finally after discovering most of Rajasthan, the moved doown south and explored a few places in Guajarat and left back to their base, New Delhi, from Ahmedabad.


Pushkar Patil 

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The views above are collated from opinions expressed by travellers on www.holidayiq.com

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