The Travelling Mother-Daughter Duo
When I had to describe my love for travelling, my opening line had never changed. I began at an early age and after a decade of globetrotting, it had shaped me into the person that I am today. And so when I came across an article on the daily newspaper about daughters who travel the world with their mothers, I found myself smiling incandescently.
Figure 1 The Sound of Music tour !! We practically sang throughout the whole tour.
It was a picture of a mother and her daughter standing in front of Neuschwanstein castle that caught my attention. In the summer of 2012, I stood right there with my own mother during the onset of my European travels. Those moments brought about my fervour for travel.
I remembered where it all stemmed from. Everything that I knew about the world began through books pertaining to travels, history and arts, all read by her to me. And back in the days when flying was not for everyone, my very first step into an air plane with her was the beginning of one of the best lifelong educations I would receive.
Figure 2 Waltzing through Schonbrunn Palace
Figure 2a Rainy day at Lincoln Memorial
At an age where appreciation and understanding began to take full form, I had circled the globe with her by my side. The challenges of a mother daughter travel is the juxtaposition of energy; my springy self would want to go on for hours on foot to explore, while she would want to make a U-turn. But that doesn't mean that she was unable to emulate the same energy. The essence of a mother-daughter travel is tolerance and looking out for each other in an unfamiliar place. When I could sense her weariness, we would call it a day and when I wanted to spend a little more time at a particular place she will accommodate.
Figure 4 Ascending Neuschwanstein with mum and aunt
"Mummy doesn't know how to take good photos! Most of the time, the pictures will turn out blurry or unfocused." I chuckled reading an all too familiar excerpt where a technologically inept mother attempts to capture her daughter's desired shot repeatedly, though failing most of the time. These trivial conundrums did test our patience, translating to short burst of animosities now and then, but in the grand scale of things, these frustrations were always drowned by invaluable moments that can only be shared between mother and daughter.
Figure 5 Us at the Vienna Opera house!!
Figure 5a The picture of Niagara falls may be out of focus but it is still a personal favorite.
"You cannot discover new oceans unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore." It can be a daunting experience at first but in all my travel experiences, I credit her for endowing me with absolute independence that eventually built courage and confidence in my travels. I'd always found it ironic whenever she claimed that her adventures with me had taught her so much more about places she had already been before. Perhaps it is because we walked more, doing away with conventional tours, reading and planning our journey together.
Figure 6 Barefoot at Central Park, New York City. Well not really..We had our shoes on.
Apart from achieving my own travel goals, making hers come true is a cathartic release for a young girl whose strongest influence is that of her mother. My mother once said she had always wanted to set foot in the Pacific ocean and when we finally did it together, it felt lighter than air. I realised that in the pursuit of my happiness, there is no greater satisfaction than putting a smile on a woman who had given so much without expecting anything in return. At the end of the day, I remembered who all this was for....
Happy Mother's Day Mummy!
Figure 7 She finally sets foot in the Pacific Ocean..