Geography fascinates me. I can sit for hours with an Atlas in hand, keeping myself busy. I almost always discover something new whenever I lay my hands on an Atlas.
Being a bibliophile, when asked what do I like reading, my answer would be: Travelogues !
I love travelogues, be it books, documentaries or TV programmes. My father used to borrow books on travelogues written by S K Pottecatt from the Trivandrum Public Library. I was so hooked to his language, metaphors and personal experiences that, they taught me more geography than my school teacher. All travelogues by Pottecatt followed by Pico Iyer (Falling Off the Map), and a book on travel experiences by Khushwant Singh (Sights and Sounds of the World) remains my favourite.
Its now the age of visual travelogues. I love them too, but seeing and listening to various places and countries does not have the thrill of reading about them. Of the many visual travelogues the one I love is ‘Sancharam’, being telecast in Asianet. It is not only the places Mr. Santhosh George shoots, but also the captivating script by Ratheesh, and the excellent narration by Aneesh Punnan Peter, which makes it so very attractive. My cable guy doesn’t supply Asianet News (where Sancharam is being telecast on all Sundays 10.30 am IST), but I do get to see Asianet, where they telecast older versions of Sancharam, Saturday mornings at 6.45; I sit glued to the TV during then.
I have read some horrible travelogues and seen some lousy TV shows which mostly explains nothing but the detailed history of the place, which is very unnecessary (in this age of google). What I look for in a travelogue is the first hand personal experience of a traveler.
Traveloging (!) is an art in itself. A fine blend of facts and creativity.