To celebrate our six year wedding anniversary, I lovingly share one of my favorite travel stories involving my darling wife, Carrie.


2012 started out quite lonely.

Carrie had gone off to India for a 2-month yoga teacher training course while I stayed behind in San Francisco. Keeping busy wasn’t an issue … I just missed my wife!

After countless spotty international Skype calls, we had come up with a plan. When Carrie’s training was over, I would put our stuff in storage, hop on a flight to India, take a 10-hour bus ride, and join her in Rishikesh for adventures unknown.

It should have been simple. But this was India …

 

Rishikesh is a town alongside the Ganges River in India
The town of Rishikesh – where Carrie was studying yoga

Getting to the Bus Station in New Delhi

Despite English being one of India’s national languages, there always seems to be communication issues when I travel there.

Upon arriving in New Delhi, all I had to do was take a crosstown bus to the interstate bus terminal. I asked several people — including airport employees — which bus to take. Needless to say, I would up on the wrong one.

Shortly after reaching the wrong bus terminal, someone was kind enough to write down (in Hindi) the exact address of where I needed to go. With little time to spare, I splurged on a cab. It might have been faster to take another bus.

 

Getting to Rishikesh

As you can imagine, I missed my bus. Fortunately, there was another one leaving 30 minutes later. Although we had no cell phones, I figured Carrie would realize what happened and wait at the terminal for the next bus.

What I didn’t count on were the realities of riding an Indian bus … aka, lots of stops and delays. At least my stress was buffered by amazing food at every rest stop!

 

Getting onto an Indian bus can be an epic experience
Getting onto an Indian bus can be an epic experience

A Long-Awaited Reunion

At this point, I should mention that Carrie had recently chopped off most of her hair and was sporting a “faux hawk.” That’s essentially a mohawk – but without fully-shaving the sides.

 

Carrie and her faux hawkNow, back to our story. — After more than two months apart (and 2+ hours of bus delays), I finally arrived in Rishikesh in the late evening.

All wanted to do was get off the bus, find Carrie, wrap my arms around her, and melt into the world’s most perfect embrace.

Instead, the only people waiting for me were a motley crew of tuk tuk drivers, each clamoring for my business.

 

“150 rupees. We take you right into town,” they offered.

“Possible,” I replied while scanning the bus station for any sign of Carrie. “But first, I am looking for my wife.”

“Yes, the woman left before,” one driver said. “She told me to wait for you. I will take you to her.”

 

I’ll admit, my first thought was that the driver was just saying anything to get me into his taxi.

“What does the woman look like,” I asked the man?

“Tall,” he replied.

Not good enough, I thought. “What about her hair?”

“Hair?” pauses to think for a moment “HALF HAIR!”

A gigantic smile crossed my face as I eagerly responded, “YES! THAT’S HER! Take me to Half Hair!” — This may have been the only time I’ve ever gotten into an Indian tuk tuk without bargaining.

 

A passenger's view of an tuk tuk driving across a bridge in India
A passenger’s view of an tuk tuk driving across a bridge in India

Happily Ever After

My hear was racing as the tuk tuk drove through the dark of night. It beat even faster when the driver told me we had arrived.

“Where is she,” I anxiously asked him?

“The bridge. Just go there.”

“Um, what bridge? Where are we?”

“There,” he said again – pointing to a wall of stairs as he drove off.

I don’t know if I’ve ever climbed up stairs as quickly as I did that night. My feet felt lighter than air as the anticipation rose.

One last flight … and then I was there.

Sure enough, so was she … the one and only Half Hair!

Finally, all was right in the world.

And thus began a whole new adventure.

 

Reunited on the shores of the Ganges River in Rishikesh
Reunited on the shores of the Ganges River in Rishikesh

 

At an Indian wedding in Rishikesh

 

Half Hair looking out at the Taj Mahal
Half Hair looking out at the Taj Mahal

 

Adventures abound in India, Thailand and beyond!
Adventures abound in India, Thailand and beyond!

 

Carrie flies me during an Acro Yoga session on the shores of the Ganges River in Rishikesh
Carrie flies me during an Acro Yoga session on the shores of the Ganges River in Rishikesh

Epilogue

After reuniting with Carrie that fateful night in Rishikesh, we spent the next 2+ years traveling around India and South America, living in Chiang Mai, Thailand, and exploring our dreams and passions.

We’ve celebrated many anniversaries and milestones since then, and have now embarked on the greatest adventure yet … parenthood!

I’m so grateful to have you by my side for all of it, Carrie. You are my muse, travel buddy, partner in crime, guru, instigator, provider of infinite support and the love of my life.

I can’t wait to celebrate our 100th anniversary together!

 

With our darling son Bodhi on April 23, 2017
With our darling son Bodhi on April 23, 2017

 

Carrie looks towards the heavens in Armstrong Woods, California
Carrie looks towards the heavens in Armstrong Woods, California