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Explore the true beauty of a place by developing local friends . . . . . . . . Make the world a better place by one new friendship at a time
Hola Todos (Hi All),
I love this approach to life * * * * * * HOSTED 17-Surfers, age 20 & up, in the first month, in a new apartment, in a new city * * * * * * And, as a CS guest for almost 3 weeks in Spain, I've had the best holiday of my life !!!
These Marathon-Couch-Surfing-Odysseys have been amazing.
I travel (and welcome guests into my home) to meet new people and learn their culture and make new friends.
I look forward to socializing with guests and hosts.
Walking in cities & exploring neighborhoods and architecture, local-foods, art, theater, classical & country music, etc. Love hiking, camping, snowshoeing, sailing, swimming/snorkeling, beaches, and gardens. I love day trips and activities which involve exploring and learning new things. You can read more in the interest's section below
I love trying local foods & drinking local brews, eating new things from everywhere, love cooking for friends and family, love learning to cook local specialties from guests/hosts, love visiting food markets.
MUSIC : I particularly love classical and country music (Western & Indian, Asian). Happy listening to almost anything
GAY - I'm gay and have a great diversity of straight and queer friends. Here's to welcoming you for the person that you are, regardless of label (Hetro & Homo or Queer!). All my surfers, except one, have been Non-Gay.
I'm a Progressive Liberal and love talking, listening, & laughing with all open minded people.
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I've moved to DC to start a new Entrepreneurship training program for STUDENT, VETERANS, & STARTUP LEADERS (in Business and Social Enterprises) . . . empowering them to rapidly succeed in their goals,and achieve their Personal Everest of Excellence".
More infor at
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Here's to tipping a glass of wine, or sharing a brew, or a meal, or doing some other fun things and starting new friendships with CS guests & hosts.
"welcoming-strangers" is a way of life, not just a different way of traveling.
In life, being a good person, is infinitely-more important than religion.
"A bit of ataraxia as a way of happiness, and a bit of life is a joke". A quote by Miguel Ángel Torrente Marchante (a CS host and my dear friend)
Why I’m on Couchsurfing
HOW I PARTICIPATE IN COUCHSURFING
"Friendship-&-Hospitality-To-Strangers" is the way I grew up.
I love hosting as often as I can.
In my parent's home, on many days there were more visitors staying than family members; and many of them later became like family!
I love the new friendship through CS, and the ongoing friendships with previous CS guests and hosts.
see in the first section "description".
Music, Movies, and Books
The French author Antoine de Saint Exupry, in his book The LITTLE PRINCE, has a lovely description of a fox saying, "The secret to happiness is very simple. It is only with the heart that one can see clearly, because what's essential, is invisible to the eye.
The same applies to traveling for me: The secret to best travel adventures is very simple. It is only with local people who share their love for their home and their culture, that a visitor can truly enjoy the inner beauty of a place; because from the outside, the real gold of a new culture is invisible to passing tourists.
One Amazing Thing I’ve Done
From life's buffet it's difficult to pick one, so here are a few . . . moments that are impossible to plan & impossible to forget:
SNORKELING in the midst of a school of fish. As I kept swimming in circles the fish started swimming round me in circles, and they stared right into my eyes; . . . the fish & I kept swimming in circles - with our eyes locked together - for ages! I was left breathless by the shear amazement of feeling like a "zoo animal" that the fish had come to see. That was amazingly beautiful.
SAILING, in strong winds with the boat keeling and racing away, with me at the helm, while splashing waves washed over my face. I remember being transfixed by the deep blue of the surf and the salty smell of the ocean, and the wind blasting the scent into my nose as it swept my hair and tugged at my clothes. The adrenaline, the feeling of being alive and the sheer exhilaration was unmatched. For a first-time sailor that was like living in a National Geographic movie!
IRISH GUYS, a group of them that I got to know quite well presented me with a Thank You plaque, on which they changed my name from the Indian version of my name (Gupta), to an Irish version - O’Gupta .... And they said that they had done this because I’d become one of their Irish family, I was one of them, because I laughed, drank, and enjoyed life like an Irishman!!!. That heart-gripping affection is forever memorable.
PARIS, a meal at a "hole-in-the-wall" restaurant in the Latin Quarter. After each course we complemented the incredible chef on his great food, and as the Chef thanked us, he sent us a round of Calvados (free with his compliments). This back-and-forth cycle - of more compliments from us, followed by more free Calvados (French apple brandy)from the chef - went on for hours! . . . . What an indescribably fun and memorable evening; although I was thoroughly drunk by the end of it!
VIENNA, in a 3 days visit, and listening to Mozart's music every day – at the Opera house, at the Chamber Music hall, and an Organ performance at the Grand Cathedral. The dazzling beauty of the music and the stunning architecture of the venues was incredibly-amazing!
* * * EPIC ADVENTURES & LIFE-CHANGING EXPERIENCES * * *
FLOODS, 500-year cycle: - in the worst floods in Pali's history, the people who had lost everything - their cheerfulness and graciousness in spite of all the horrors - is an unforgettable experience. I co-led the first emergency rescue teams.
PUSHKAR CAMEL FAIR, discovering that the world's oldest citizen-organized free-market and private-enterprise community is among some of the world's poorest and least educated people living in a desert, continues to astonish me.
KUMBH, discovering that people are innately good and peaceful at the world's largest (100+ million people) community of people of all beliefs including atheists, having fun and celebrating together, was jawdropping. Discovering the inherent goodness in humanity, like core DNA, is the most stunningly dazzling experience of my life. This is the core inspiration for my present work.
AN AWESOME GUY - Recently I met a guy who could not hear, could not talk, (I dislike using the terms deaf & dumb). He also had twisted feet, and could barely walk. Over lunch, as we were writing questions & answers back & forth to each other, I asked him what brought him to DC? His reply was:- with a beaming smile, he wrote "for pleasure." !!! . . . I've been WOWing that amazing young man ever since. . . . What a great philosophy for living. Here's a guy, refusing to be defined by his circumstances, but defying them!
Teach, Learn, Share
I love sharing all I know & love soaking up all that others share.
Countries I’ve Visited
Austria, France, Germany, Italy
Countries I’ve Lived In
India, Netherlands, Nigeria, United Kingdom, United States