My job involves travelling. My first onsite was excitement about vising a foreign country for the first time. I enjoyed it so much that I always looked for an opportunity to travel. Fortunately, I always managed to find projects which allowed me to travel. As I was about to get married, my near and dear ones were concerned. My cousin asked me, “You travel for your work for long duration. Will your husband’s family be OK with it?” My parents were concerned that my ambition (plus love for travel) might not go down well with my in-laws. They asked me to clarify it with my boyfriend (who is now my husband) before getting married. I told him how people around me are concerned and how they are forming assumptions about him. We laughed it off.
I married him and I continue travelling for my work. He switched jobs before marriage for better growth and now he too travels (more than me) for his work.
We are the travelling couple. The first 8 months of last year one of us was always travelling. We got to spend just a week or two together. People say, “Oh, I don’t know how do you do it! I can’t live without my wife/husband for so long.” “Once you have children, then of course you cannot travel.”
It is going to be 3 years since our marriage now.
If anything, travel has kept our relationship strong. It never allowed romance to go out of the window. Whatever time we get, we try to spend it together as much as we can.
Thankfully, we are in a generation where we don’t have to just depend on phone to talk. Skype and WhatsApp are our saviors. Time zone differences crop up, but we navigate them always. Also, we try not to go away for more than 3 weeks anywhere. When I had to stay away for a long time, we looked on it as an opportunity to travel. My husband visited me in Australia to coincide with a long weekend and we traveled.
It is a boon that my husband loves travelling too. So, whenever we find time we plan trips together. This gives us the much needed ‘couple time’. Since we know that any one of us can travel anytime, whatever time we have we value it more. We try doing things together, like coordinating our times so we can travel back home together from office, shop for even small things together. We don’t fight much and even if we do, we don’t let it continue for days.
Related reading: The trip that tested our relationship
We shop for everything online and have a cook. We undertake major repairs only when he’s around and pay bills online, so the home front is manageable.
The main challenge we face is managing both sets of parents, when one of us is out. Our parents are old and require our assistance. When we both are in town, it is much easier since we can divide. However with one of us gone, managing both sets is challenging. We both avoid travel during Ganpati (since we bring it home for 10 days) and Diwali.
Whenever both of us have traveled to countries where we have friends, we have stayed back a day or two extra.
Our love of travelling helps us to understand the feeling of exploring a new destination, even if that means staying apart for two extra days. We look for places for the other to visit when travelling alone.
We both are extremely individualistic. I think this helps us to stay apart. Even when we are together we need our space. I enjoy reading, while he is hooked on his TV series. We also go out with our own sets of friends.
I won’t lie; while travelling with friends who are couples, I miss him and I’m positive he does too. When apart we try to talk twice a day. However, social obligations, time zone differences might prevent us from talking even once a day. So it isn’t a rule or a compulsion.
I look forward to my solo trips. I enjoy my me time, doing simply what I like. We haven’t planned any kids yet. But we’re clear, whenever we do have kids, it will be our responsibility and not just mine :).
Travelling was a part of me and now is a part of us. Travelling defined my personality and it now defines our relationship too. In the future, it will define our family too.