Here at Two Drifters, we love to share the tales of other traveling couples. It’s so rewarding to learn about the romance and adventures of other intrepid duos who journey the world together. Our latest interview is with Lavi who blogs at A Capricious Compass and her husband Ajay.
Meet Lavina & Ajay!
Photo Credit Rahul de Cunha
When did you first start travelling together?
Approximately 13 years ago! AJ and I dated for a decade before we tied the knot. Travelling as a couple before you’re married is still frowned upon in India, but travel together we did, with friends. I’m from Goa and I sometimes feel AJ loves me because I am Goan! Our first trip was to Goa in 2005. After we got married, we headed off together to Palawan for our honeymoon, and even after travelling to 20 countries together, it still remains one of our favourite destinations.
How would you describe your travel style?
We both work at a full time job. We love what we do. So our trips are planned, yet spontaneous. Once we know where we’re headed and have our stay booked, we do anything and everything that we’d want to! Maximising our holidays on a budget is always our top goal, though we do splurge once a year.
What has been the most rewarding part of travelling as a couple?
Being more adventurous with every trip we take! After spending 13 years together it still feels there’s something new to get to know about each other. The way we respond to situations has changed drastically over the years. I’ve always been a rebellious, spontaneous person and AJ has been patient. AJ has tried wood worms in The Philippines and I patiently sorted our travel plans when our flights got cancelled recently. We’re picking up traits from each other and it feels good!
What has been the most challenging part of travelling as a couple?
Deciding destinations! Our travel styles vary greatly and we’re always trying to push our priorities to the top of the list. Jokes apart, when we first started travelling together, I crammed too many things in a day and all AJ wanted to do was eat and rest. It was challenging to reach a consensus, but over the years I now chalk out plans we both love.
Have you ever had a fight on the road/while travelling, and how did you handle it?
We have but since it’s always a new city we’re exploring, we resolve it quickly. After we moved to the UK, we first visited Edinburgh and I wanted to visit ‘Our Dynamic Earth’ as it was a rainy day and I did not want to sit cooped in the room. But it was a ‘Free for school kids’ day and we weren’t allowed in. That got me in a foul mood and AJ was hungry, which didn’t go down well. I’ve now realised I need to let go off things that I cannot do anything about and AJ tells me right away when the hunger pangs hit!
Can you share your funniest, most humorous experience travelling together?
The British are amazing when they’re drunk! On our flight to Spain, this one guy started chatting with me. After a while he shrieks and scares me. When I ask him what happened, he pinched my cheek to grab an eyelash and hand it over to me. All this while, AJ kept giggling silently rather than asking him to zip it and sleep it off. I continued to play along and ask the guy, what next? He says wasted eyelashes are not good and I need to make a wish. So I did, only to find him inches away from my face when I opened my eyes, asking me what I’d wished for! After that I started pacing around till the flight landed. AJ continued giggling.
Where have you been that you would recommend as the top destination for couples travel?
Definitely the Philippines if you love the sand and sea! For city breaks, we loved Barcelona and Paris. For couples who love the country-side, Switzerland and Scotland. For heaps of snow and activities, Norway.
How long have you two been together?
13 years and all we feel after all these years is that we’re a couple of besties staying together!
Do you think your relationship would be different if you didn’t travel?
It would in a way. While we definitely would have picked a hobby and nurtured it, it’s exciting to get to know our reactions to things we would never have thought about in our wildest dreams. Travelling keeps us sane and makes us happier people. It is because of our shared passion that we appreciate each other more and continue to grow even as individuals.
How do you define love?
Letting me lie in every weekend and having coffee ready when I wake up. Love also is, getting lost and walking around in circles till we find the exact place he wants to buy macaroons from in Paris. Be it the good or bad, it’s the simple things everyday that add up. It’s love when you adore someone as much as you adore yourself and when you think of a person even when you’re happy doing something miles away, you know its love.
What do you think is the glue that keeps relationships together?
Compromise, giving each other space and leaving no space for jealousy. Above all, making each other laugh.
But food helps too. Food works like magic when you feel things aren’t going the right way. A little comfort food is all you need to park your thoughts, get cosy and then talk things out, when you’re not mad and have given thought as to what got you worked up in the first place.
What advice do you have for couples considering travelling together?
Try to understand your travel style and reach a consensus on how you’d like to experience a place before you set off. Travelling involves getting tired and sometimes your best persona may take a break. When you understand you’re getting cranky its best to say it out loud, so the other half knows to let go of things quickly. Put your heart in things you may not wholeheartedly want to experience, only if the partner wants to try it out, you’d be surprised how happy it makes you feel too! Every minute of your holiday may not involve scenes from a romantic movie; it’s about the both of you making memories that will last a lifetime.