8 Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me Before I Went to India
After more than a decade running celebrity weekly magazines in New York City I found myself jobless, unsure what to do next and with a chunk of time to actually travel somewhere, not just vacation, but truly travel.
I could have just stayed in New York—unemployed, anxiety-ridden, and buried underneath four feet of snow or I could hit pause on my professional life, challenge myself and travel somewhere completely alien to me. India beckoned as somewhere exotic and yet affordable.
Leaving Kim Kardashian’s behind very far behind me, I traveled from chaotic Delhi across the beautiful desert cities of Rajasthan to vibrant Mumbai and then onto the dreamy beaches of Goa.
I had the trip of a lifetime, but things could have gone smoother along the way. Here is what I wish someone had told me before I left.
The tropical paradise of Goa. (Photo: Thinkstock)
1. Pack light. Then pack lighter.
Fill your suitcase with everything you think you need. Now take everything out and reduce it by half. Now do it again. I didn’t need three pairs of shorts or 10 tops since I could wash everything I brought with me for 200 rupees ($3.50). Bring a collapsible bag to fill with all of your travel swag (I bought my sarongs where Judi Dench picked up hers!). My packing advice: Bring five tops, one pair of shorts, five pairs of underwear, one pair of shoes, and one pair of flip flops, and one swanky outfit for going out in Mumbai. DO bring your favorite shirt/dress/trousers. It costs around $15 to get your favorite clothes replicated in whatever fabrics you like. Nowhere in the world can you get bespoke tailoring at such a price. I went crazy and got seven tailored shirts made to the template of my best Acne shirt.
Dame Judy was here! (Photo: Dan Wakeford)