Action Replay + Gratitude List: July 2019

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Yay, July is over! Okay, I probably am more excited about entering my birthday month than bidding goodbye to July. As much as I'm looking forward to August and the beginning of a new year of my life, I cannot ignore the wonder that July was. July calmed me down to a large extent. It was all about retrospect, sorting of priorities, reflection on the physical and mental health and keeping the momentum going. My battle with anxiety continues, but I have been able to bring it under control to a large extent. Ever since I took a step back from work sometime last September and put myself first, things have improved immensely. Thankfully, work hasn't been too stressful and I found quite a lot of time to relax, breathe and take care of myself.

It has been two months since we moved into the new place and we are quite settled now. We still have a long way to go before we can say that everything is set up in the house. We still haven't started the garden department. My husband and I love natural decor so we are looking to have quite a lot of indoor plants at home and set up a small garden in the balcony! While the house looks beautiful now, a hint of green will take it up a notch. But, we're so exhausted with running around for the house that we want to take this slow. We barely do anything these days that is not home related, so we do need a break from all the setting up and running around.

Triund Top

We did get a good break from the monotony of work and setting up a home when we took a vacation to the hills! As much as I love the beach and the sun, the hills always make me pensive and helps me sort myself. We have always wanted to visit Dharamsala and finally we made our way up there. From there, we trekked up to Triund, camped in the mountains for a night and trekked back down the next day. 17 kilometers of trekking along a mountain, slippery slopes, stony paths, wet grass, mule dung and what not. They say that the best view always comes after the hardest climb, it couldn't be more right! Triund top is so stunning! The clear blue skies, the vast mountains, the fresh air, the greenest of grass, happy horses and cows, content locals; this is what life should be all about! Trust me, we all take simplicity for granted and want grander things from life. But when you realize that you are just a small speck on this earth, you get to see the bigger picture.

Climbing up and down a mountain is no easy task. It takes a toll on your entire body! Since we even trekked in heavy rain, we were all wet, sweaty and dirty! While the view and the pleasant ambiance does distract you, what amazes me is the healing power of the human body! I twisted my ankle twice during the trek, but I did not stop and continued with the trek. By the time we settled down in the camp, the body was back to normal and the pain ceased to exist. When the trek ended and we got back to Dharamsala, though tired, the body felt energized and pumped up! All the pain, all the fatigue had just disappeared! When we take care of our body well, our body will also take care of us well. Both my physical and mental strength was tested to the max this time, but I came out with flying colors and I'm pretty damn proud of myself!

Reading came to a standstill this month as I was reading two books that is quite tedious! 'The life changing art of tidying up' by Marie Kondo excited me a lot at the beginning, but as I'm reading it, it is getting too preachy and monotonous. So, I paused. I have always wanted to read the work of Fyodor Dostoevsky and a friend suggested that I start with 'Notes from the underground' and so I did! A spiteful man talking about pain seems like an interesting concept, but after a couple of chapters it started getting to me and I couldn't connect with the book at all. Paused! I also started 'Golem and the Djinni', but since travel happened soon after that I am yet to resume reading it! I'm also one of the early readers of a book for a friend who is publishing her work and I'm pretty excited about it.

Writing was pretty decent in August thanks to the WordlessWednesday and ThursdayTreeLove! I'm so happy I started this and I look forward to it week after week. Since I don't want to do both on the same week, I'll do each on alternate weeks. It will help me plan my other writing better as well. I finally got to writing a #NotAMovieReview post after a while and I'm thrilled with the response I got for it! I miss writing poetry though. Hopefully, I'll get to it in August.

July was a very fruitful month and here's what I'm thankful for:

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~ Work: In spite of working full time, my job gives me the time to follow my passions and take care of a house. Work-life balance becomes easier thanks to this!

~ Travel: Food and travel are things that make me instantly happy! Throw me into the lap of nature and that is another bonus! While I have gone on small treks before, this was a big experience for me and a first when it comes to camping under the stars! I loved every bit of it!

~ Nature: Ah! Why does man take nature for granted and ruin everything? The mountains, the clear blue skies, the fresh breeze, the whole aura of the place will remain with me for a long time. The night we camped also turned out to be a full moon night and we were blessed with ample light without torches! We were a small group of eight and we had a great time sitting and talking endlessly under the stars!

Illiterati Cafe

~ Quaint Cafes: Dharamsala has some of the best cafes in the country! A small trek up the Bhagsu Nag falls takes you to the famous Shiva cafe! Homely ambiance and trippy music along with some really good food! What more can you ask for? Another cafe we loved was Cafe Illiterati. This is a cafe surrounded by books all around and has a view to die for! Not to forget the awesome food as well.

~ Health: I cannot stress the importance of this enough. Health is wealth indeed and we need to do everything we can to take care of our bodies both physically and mentally. Spending some good time amidst nature helped me clear my mind to a large extent and let go of futile stuff.

Us

~ Love: I probably would not have enjoyed travel as much as I do now if I didn't have the perfect travel companion with me. My husband's a nature baby and just loves to be outdoors and I feel so happy to see him when he's doing what he loves! He was a huge support to me and the entire group when we were climbing up. His energy is so infectious! Together, we have traveled a lot and have come a long way and I know that this is only the beginning.

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As we step into the month of August, my birthday month, I look back at 2019 with a bright smile. I'll soon enter into a new year of my life and I'm very happy and content with where I am today. That shall be the beginning of my gratitude list for August.

How did July treat you?

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Linking this post to Vidya's Gratitude Circle for this month.



24 comments:

  1. So good to see you took out the time to travel, which you love. You are right about one thing, it wouldn’t have been as much fun without the perfect companion. My July was peaceful, some bumps health wise with respect to the family but that should be fine. Uneventful probably is the word that describes my July and I think I like it that way for now :)

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    1. Oh yes, Naba! It sorts me out, travel.

      I hope everything is fine now and that August makes up for the uneventfulness of July :)

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  2. That seems like a perfect month to me, Soumya. I loved it that you got to travel, health is good, work is good and you have a caring partner. Pretty much sorted. Wish you a happy August.

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    1. It kinda was in a way :)

      Wishing you a very happy August too, Rachna.

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  3. I love your travel tales. You guys make an amazing couple and I love it when you post adorable couple pics. I narrated your entire travel tale to my husband for the first time and he loved the pictures. I am super happy you were able to sort out about everything important to you Sou. I paused Marie Kondo too, I am currently reading "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society", it is interesting so far. I love writing letters and so I am loving this book more. Yay, awaiting your birthday baby! <3

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    1. Thank you so much, Jay. You are way too kind.

      Guernsey is a wonderful book and I have loved it!

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  4. Wow, you had such an amazing July, S! I wish for all this and more for you in August. Have a rocking birthday month! :)

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  5. The hike sounds so wonderful. Your description about nature and the full moon night is making me long for hills. I really want to feel the fresh mountain breeze. And yes, a wonderful companion makes the trip even more special. I wish I had visited these places while I was living in India.
    Have a fabulous birthday month.

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    1. Thank you, Raj! A travel companion who gets you is a blessing.

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  6. Wow, you have had a such a great July. Trekking is hard work but it's also rewarding. I spent most of July on bed but we did go to Kabini and it rejuvenated me. August is my birthday month too and I am happy that it's finally here.

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    1. Thank you, Harini! Kabini must have been beautiful this time of the year. Yay to August born queens!

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  7. This was surely a superhit month. Trekking in the Himalayan region is like a daredevil act but then what do less adventourous people like would know. A big Bravo shout out to you. Lots of love and good wishes to you for stepping into your birthday month.

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    1. Thank you so much, Anamika! It wasn't easy, but we made it

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  8. This post is full of so much zing Soumya and yay for the Bday month girl!! I hope there is tonnes of pampering ahead in this month for you.

    The trek sounds amazing as does that pic of the cafe- you look so happy and contented - god bless you!

    Wishing you an equally fulfilling august ahead woman - hugs and kisses from Gurgaon!!!

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    1. Thank you, awesomeness :)

      Lots of love back to you!

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  9. Camping is amazing! I still occasionally go camping and continue to enjoy day hikes. There is nothing like nature to soothe the soul. Cafes with books are the best! I hope your birthday month is fantastic!

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  10. Soumya, happy birthday to you in advance. Your July was a dream month, may the rest of your year be as exciting as this. Trekking is hard work but the end result is worth it. I remember going to Bhutan in March this year and climbing to the Tiger's nest monastery.My husband made it to the top while I quit midway due to exhaustion.It wasn't because I am 55 years old, he is a year older:) My July was great. I visited my so in Canada. My grandson celebrated his first birthday in July. This was the highlight of my year.

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    1. Your grandson is so adorable <3

      You are doing great in terms of fitness. Stick to your goal and you will be able to complete every trek soon :)

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  11. Yay August is my birthday month too and I can understand the excitment.

    Ah i understand with regards to setting up hoe. Its a task and if it is about the garden do go slow and pick the right ones. i seldom keep plants, for everytime I nurture them, a transfer happens and it is time to move out to another home. Sigh!

    Dharamsala has been on our list for long. Need to find time to plan this out. The hubby has become super lazy to travel after our Europe trip :P

    And thats such an adorable pic.

    Have a great birthday month !

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    1. Yay to us!

      Oh yes I'm going to be very careful when it comes to the garden as I have way too much on my plate already and cannot spend more time on this.

      Thank you! Plan another trip, he'll come running I'm sure.

      You have a great birthday month too!

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  12. Loved reading about your month. I am so looking forward to seeing your place. I am back in September week 1 end and then I am going to msg you. Loved your pictures from the trek and this above one is a favorite. Travel goals must look like that. I love the mountains. More than the beaches and I think you know that. I think the Himalayas in particular have that charm. You just can't go once. :)
    So glad you are taking life a bit easy and making yourself a priority. A must do for all of us. I am happy for you and I wish that this birthday and the year brings you health and happiness. <3

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