Book Review of Live the Change: A travel tale of a twenty-something-year-old earthling by Neha Ballal
Do you know which is truly the real and possibly the only ideal way to live? Simple. Play it by the ear. Take life as it comes in your stride. Enjoy every moment. Well, that is definitely the ideology shared by the writer of Live the Change: A travel tale of a twenty-something-year-old earthling by Neha Ballal, a unique and of its kind.
Live life fully so that you get a chance to be the change you want to bring about in your life as well as those of others.
Indeed, life is a beautiful journey waiting to be lived on its own terms and also to be perused as minutely as possible. One may argue that what is so brilliant about that, I mean don’t we all do it? No, I guess not as we constantly seem to be running behind those material things which are only of superficial importance at the end of the day, overlooking the little joys of life in the process. What is important is to really take a minute, pause and see what is it that exists around us and revel and indulge in the beauty of nature around us.
In case you are wondering what has gotten into me today, well a travelogue I recently finished made me latch onto this simple yet biggest perception in life and how! Yes, sometimes the simplest of expeditions and journeys were undertaken to give you such joy, experience and wisdom in life that you are left with much more than where you began.
Do you know the best thing about Neha Ballal’s latest book Live the Change? Well, it is a travelogue I have read like no other. From the simplest of her pursuits like riding a Bullet for the first time right to staying in the most basic of accommodations like mud houses, Neha has encapsulated not only her travels but her experiences which are worth their weight in gold. It was absolutely endearing to read her experiences right from her trysts in the Himalayas to how she helped build homes right to how she got closer to nature and animals too, pursuing the true endowments of nature in a manner we seldom do. I mean sure when one speaks travel what usually might come to your mind is an exotic bucket list of sorts where there is a lot of “planned” sort of adventure, with activities synthetic-man made designed to give you entertainment yes, but not the experience you may truly seek. Ever heard of the term hitchhiking? Well, that truly is the way to be, to travel, to explore and roam about freely, no strings attached, living to your heart’s content. Sometimes, the basic, most rudimentary ways of life living are the ones best enjoyed as you tend to live and “breathe through those moments”, truly discovering life, nature and your own self too, in the process.
I felt absolutely smashing the way she narrates her adventures. Be it her Ahmedabad travels, her chronicles of Goa, Leh, Hampi, Nainital, Sikkim as well as Nepal, I could virtually feel myself present in these places, travelling, no wait floating alongside her as she seemed to be seamlessly gliding away, pausing to soak in the place, its beauty and enjoying the process in the meanwhile, carefree, unburdened and unthinking of anything else. There was a brilliant feel to her narrative, be it the travels, the stays, or the experiences, everything was absolutely off the hook, natural, unfiltered and beautiful. And yes, there even was a portion mentioning her tryst with the entire period of Covid19 and how she began to take life in a much different manner during as well as post the pandemic.
I liked the camaraderie between her and her besties Yamini and Krithika whom she has mentioned in the acknowledgements too. There was so much warmth in the manner she depicted her tete-a-tete with them, the way she takes their opinions while her pursuits were endearing and made me remind of my cousins and the fun times we used to have back then. Really, that is what life is truly about, a colourful kaleidoscope of vibrance, flamboyance and all those things which truly make life beautiful and worth living.
A travelogue like no other, this one was also apt and comprehensive enough to give the do’s and don’ts of travel, what one needs to keep in mind, what to avoid and how to go about undertaking the best possible travels. An absolute Pandora’s box this one was fun, frolic, adventure, and life all rolled in one big jumbo. An amazing piece of writing.
Live the Change
This is the story of an average twenty-something-year-old girl who has travelled a little more than an average girl with a little less than an average income. From learning to ride a Royal Enfield on the Manali Leh highway to learning how to swim in the river Tungabadra where a dead crocodile showed up one day. From living in a tent during peak winter for two months in Nepal while volunteering to build a school to segregating garbage for five months in a remote high-altitude village in Uttarakhand while teaching about waste management in schools. From getting locked out in the fire escape staircase of a five-star hotel in Goa to being offered money by the lady standing behind in the line to buy a packet of milk when counting coins to pay for it in Sikkim, this travelogue is an honest tale about all the misadventures the author has faced during her travels.
So, hope you guys liked reading my thoughts about this travelogue called Live the Change by Neha Ballal. Stay tuned for the best in the field of entertainment, travel, lifestyle, food, finance, tech and gadgets as well as all things bookish. Only here at Booxoul, India’s best book review and lifestyle website.
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