An ode to 4 years in Australia – POTER cover teaser

https://youtu.be/K1vADQh-WTg

Melbourne was the birth place of The Exiled Rogue Series, though the inception happened in Mumbai. The former had the peace and serenity that gave birth to the writing, whereas the pace and energy of the latter fuelled my lifelong ambition to write.

What better way to celebrate this milestone than to show you aerial views of two beautiful locations in the city I now call home.

Excited to share the teaser of The Prophecy of the Exiled Rogue cover.

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A Decade out of Dubai

Aerial view of Dubai – clicked by me

“You won’t survive in Mumbai!”

“I bet you will be back in 3 months!”

“I bet six!”

When I decided to move from Dubai having lived there all my life, it was no surprise that it caused many to be in shock, disbelief or denial. “Why would you leave Dubai to go to Mumbai?” someone asked. At that time all I could say is “Because the city is alive and buzzing and it challenges me,” something that Dubai had stopped doing a while ago.

I landed in Mumbai on 23 July 2010, in the middle of the monsoon season, with two suitcases and lots of ideas on where life would take me. “So is this it, will you be here permanently?” someone asked very soon after I moved. I had the insight to say, “I am here for now,” and left it at that. Mumbai was indeed ‘the city of dreams’ and that’s where many milestones were achieved and beautiful friendships made.

But like any catalyst, Mumbai started whispering in my ear after five years of being there, saying “I have taught you what you needed to learn”. The old dream, the last unfulfilled one of moving to Australia, was a parting gift from Mumbai. A process that was stuck in Dubai moved along smoothly when I revisited it. Less than two years later, I found myself packing my bags again to move to Melbourne.

It has been a little over three years here and I now realize what Mumbai was trying to say to me. Every city I have lived in has taught me things that I needed to know to grow in the next one. Mumbai was a beautiful gestation period as it sprung forth the purpose that I created for myself in Melbourne.

I changed careers, studied and trained to be a counsellor. I started my own counselling practice and have recently qualified to provide supervision to counsellors as well. A dream that was nurtured in Dubai when I was in high school, for which I took a writing course in Mumbai finally came to fruition in Melbourne. I wrote three books in the span of a year, completing a story idea that germinated while watching a movie in Mumbai. I thought it would end with one book, and laughed at the idea of writing three. But write I did, riding on a wave of inspiration, flowing with a perspective I wanted to share with the world.

Today marks ten years that I left Dubai. A place I yearn to visit more than ever since travel became a distant reality. I miss my parents, my family and my friends, most of whom I am better connected with, as the distance hasn’t been an issue thanks to technology.

Leaving the nest and spreading your wings is something I wish for everyone who wants it. There is growth outside the comfort zone and I am glad I had the chance to move and grow when I was ready for it. If you too, find yourself at a crossroads, don’t be scared. Everything you have ever wanted is on the other side of fear. Take the plunge and embrace the adventure!

“I had to make you uncomfortable, otherwise you never would have moved.” – The Universe

3 years in Straya

The last year has been filled with inspiration and momentum. Writing, publishing, book launches across the globe, but where was all of it supposed to start from? Melbourne!


Mumbai was the beginning of the writing journey but it was here that the stars would align and the stories would flow. For that and countless other things, thank you Australia 🙏

2 years down under

What a wonderful and super sonic time it has been, with travels, milestones, entering a new decade and welcoming so many loved ones from all over the world! Who says Australia is far?

When a country welcomes you and takes care of you in every way possible, you can’t help but fall in love with it. Thanking all the energies and wishes that made this happen and look forward to exploring the natural beauty of this island continent!

365 sunsets in Melbourne

I don’t question destiny anymore. Today marks one year of my move to Melbourne, Australia, a gorgeous city in a beautiful country which was always supposed to be home, just not at the the time I thought was right.

Friends gave me the confidence and comfort to move to Mumbai and Melbourne was no different. Thanks to the St. Kilda boys for making the city such a warm and wonderful home!

As I look back on the flight out from Mumbai one year ago I remember all the mixed feelings I had, but I knew I would carry it with me in my heart, just as I did Dubai. As the world grows smaller with social media and frequent flying, it isn’t long till I see my loved ones in both India and UAE, as I add more to the list of people to grow old with!

Thank you to the universe for listening to me and having my back, and for always providing! How does it get any better than this?

A tale of six cities

This story starts, as many such stories do, at the airport. You are ready to board for your destination, when it dawns on you that you have been in transit your whole life and realise that change is not only imminent, but necessary. This is my short story of a long contemplation, which finally resulted in a move that has been very fruitful.

DUBAI

The city where I lived my entire life, barring four years of university in London. It was a cosy place while I was growing up, with lots of character. The city was developing too, at a rapid pace, far too fast for us to keep up with I guess. Somewhere, I felt I no longer connected with it. A place where my entire family, circle of childhood and high school friends, colleagues, cousins resided, suddenly felt distant to me. It is then I started my search of where in the world I would like to live next.

MELBOURNE

Australia was a popular country to move to at the time. I had but one friend there who would be my head quarters in the city. I started living in Melbourne in my mind, planning how my life would be ‘in a land far far away’. But unfortunately, or as fate would have it for me, the ‘Once upon a time’ never happened. After waiting endlessly I planned a trip to clear my mind and decide where I would like to move. An Eat, Pray, Love of sorts, not in that order and certainly not those countries in the book!

AMSTERDAM

First stop.  The ‘sights and sounds’ of Sin City. On holiday with Mr. Nairobi and lunch with Ms. Antwerp, we enjoyed the beauty and ease of Europe! Some worship, a little clarity, and a 3 day trip ends with the beginning of a decision that seems fast approaching on the horizon.

NEW YORK

Second stop. The Big Apple had just gotten bigger, with so much to do in so little time. My cousins, a dear friend who had moved from Dubai and a tight schedule gave little time to introspect. Funny how you travel to cities far away to make a decision to move to a totally different city, but the distance helps. Your mind re-organises information, compartmentalises thoughts and generally points you in the right direction.

LONDON

Final stop. A few days in my beloved city where I lived for 4 years certainly cleared the last remaining doubts. A short one night trip to Bristol to meet Mr. Luxury MBA, I spent the remaining days with my pal from my masters. I spoke to her about many important things, this being one of them. That talk was the highlight of the trip. When I was alone, my music and feet took me to familiar haunts and corners where I saw my younger self without a worry in the world. I could see where I had to go, everything seemed clear. We go further to get closer to ourselves, travel the world to find a resting place. Now the hard part would be to break the news!

MUMBAI

After I got back I quit my job and started clearing my life. Memories stored for decades saw the light, were sorted and put away again. Nostalgia and the shock of others weakened me, but I stayed firm on my decision. Within 6 weeks of being back, I was on a plane, back ‘home’. Funny word for nomads like us. Dubai, Mumbai and god knows which other city will claim that title. But for now, it has been 3 years and counting!