I not only see the world but I discover a new me with each journey I take, says Pratichee Mohapatra on an impassioned interview call. Reminiscing her childhood train journeys and flying to places around the world, ‘Sab Ho Jaane Do’ singer has revealed her priceless memories. So run your eyes down to read her ‘free from reservation’ interview that is truly heartwarming. Take a dekko!
: What is travelling for you?
I believe that travelling is the best way to learn about oneself because when you are put outside your regular environment, you get a new set of opportunities. There are issues that crop up and how you deal with all of it, gives you a true insight of a person that you are. So this wisdom comes along only when we travel.
: Three things that you always carry in your bag while travelling?
Cash, my phone charger with power bank and common friends.
: What’s the most fun childhood travel memory of yours?
My dad was in the Indian Navy. So whenever he was posted to another place, we used to travel by train. Back in the 80's and 90’s, the train food was not that great but for some reason I used to always look forward to it, I wonder why! The excitement of the rail journey would make that watery dal and dahi taste so good. I always troubled my mom for not eating but I used to finish up my train food. My whole family makes fun of it even today.
: One place in India that is close to your heart.
Hyderabad. I’ve lived there for the longest time. Also, my sister lives there and I’m very close to her. So going back to Hyderabad feels like going back home.
: What’s your dream destination in India?
I want to explore Ladakh and the Northeast.
: One unique travel experience in India that moved your heart.
I don’t know about ‘moving my heart’, a bit of a strong statement I would say but the architectural finesse of the Taj Mahal in Agra left me awestruck. When I saw Taj for the first time, I was completely floored. To imagine the kind of engineering and how they built a masterpiece like this is stuck in my head even today.
: If you are making a travel documentary. Which place would you choose?
I would make a documentary featuring folk music and regional cuisines and how these elements influence each other in our country. Travelling down different states to discover music and cuisine and then creating a story out of it would be something really interesting.
: What’s your favourite travel song?
Oooooh, nice question! So many to list but I have very fond memories of this RD Burman song - ‘Kal kya hoga kisko pata abhi zindagi ka le lo maza’. My best friend and I used to blast this song whenever it was aired on the radio. We literally used to sing it on top of our voices while driving around the city.
: Which place you won’t mind being stranded at?
: One unique festival of India that left you amazed?
I have heard so much about the mystical and romantic Rann of Kutch festival in Gujarat. The pictures that I have seen so far are just magical and that’s something I would like to capture with my own eyes. That’s definitely something on my travel list.
: A person whose travel diary you would like to read?
I don’t know whether he has a travel diary but he wrote a book which I loved. ‘Shantaram’ by Gregory David Roberts. So I would love to read his unedited notes before he published that book.
: One place in India from where nothing is far.
: If you have to go on a girl’s trip, which place in India would you choose?
: What’s your biggest fear when it comes to travelling?
Unhygienic and dirty washrooms. It's my biggest nightmare.
: What’s your all time favourite dish from Indian menu?
I will not name a particular dish but I would rather name my favourite cuisines because I have two. One is Odia food because I am from Odisha. I love the typical mustardy flavours and the seafood that Odians make and I love the flavours of Mangalore for the fact that Manglorians also treat their seafood really well. Texture, flavours, everything is just perfect.
: What’s the wildest thing you have ever done while travelling?
I can’t tell you that.
: What’s the best travel advice you have ever received?
Learn a few common phrases of the local language of the place that you are visiting and always separate your sources of money so that there’s a backup in case of an emergency. These were some wise pieces of advice that were really helpful for me.
: What’s one travel habit that you want to change?
I need to learn to travel light.
: What’s the most expensive thing you bought on a trip?
Around three years back my husband and I went on a holiday to Japan. We picked a part for our record player from there that is made out of jade. It’s one of the most expensive things I have ever bought.
: Would you like to plan your road trip with a free circuit planner?
Sure! Once the travel restrictions are eased out I would love to plan a trip.
From reserving her spot in India’s first girl’s band -Viva back in 2002 to achieving mammoth success with her latest track ‘Sab Ho Jaane Do’ from Mirzapur 2, Pratichee Mohapatra has come a long way with sheer talent. In the span of her singing career, she has garnered immense love for her strong voice and solo albums. Along with brilliant singing, multifaceted Pratichee acts in films and also writes the lyrics that touch the right chord of heart. Her song ‘Kya Thi Meri Galti’ was a rage among girls and there are numerous interesting things in store. Wearing a talent crown with grace and humility, Pratichee strikes the perfect balance despite upheavals on the health front. She’s impressive, inspiring and superlatively stunning, don’t you agree?
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