Meeting Robyn Davidson-writer of Tracks and The Desert Places

Following my Soul track, lead me to the “Tracks”

Indeed ~ this is what it’s all about. Dreams, desires, wishes, hopes and how some of them turn into reality.

In 2015, my friend Jenny from UK was reading a book called “Desert Places” written by Robyn Davidson, based on her traveling with Rabari/Rayka (shepherd) in Western India (Rajasthan and Gujarat) in 1992. Jenny sent me message and said that this book made her think of Desert, Camels and Kutch region (Western Most district of Gujarat, state of India, bordering with Pakistan)

For me this little piece of message was very inspiring as I’ve been running guided tours in Kutch region since 2010 and have some good friends from Rabari (shepherd) Community who are known for their extraordinary semi-nomadic lifestyle along with their herd of sheep, goats and few camels who carries their belongings during the migration from Kutch to some other parts of Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, etc.

Rabari are one of the last remained herders who are migrating in search of grass and water for their animals. Unfortunately their lifestyle is under the threat because of urbanization, industrialization and shrinking grasslands.  

If you have ever spent time with yourself in Nature, you would know what it means to be alive, be free and be content. How smaller our existence is! How great and wonderful the Natural World is, in which we have very little time to live, experience everything, understand a bit and before it makes any clear sense to us, it’s over. For these herders, it is everyday life and it’s beautiful in many ways though it’s challenging in some ways.

Having that realization after surviving the Earthquake of 2001 in Bhuj that killed more than 18000 people, I have awaken to the beauty of life, the simplicity and highly inspired by those people who are comfortably living  in harmony with Nature such as Rabari of Kutch.

Let’s get back on the track of my story. So here I’m super excited to found about Robyn Davidson, writer of the book called “Tracks” and her traveling across Australian desert along with 4 camels and a dog back in 1977 that was going to be a best seller book at a time and eventually turn into a movie with the same title “Tracks”  in 2013.

So when my friend Jenny told me about Robyn, I fell in love with her and her adventures. Knowing that someone has done something beautifully crazy and thrilling, way before I was born even and that person has also walked with Rabari in my home state-Gujarat in 1992 was more than enough for me to make her my “real life hero” so my immediate reaction was to search Robyn Davidson Track on Facebook and this is what I found out:

I couldn’t resist writing a short message on Facebook page that I thought was hers 😉

Unfortunately it wasn’t her.

Although as you can see the screenshot, I sent my regards to her by “Universal Vibes straight from the Desert of Kutch”  

Now you might think what the “Universal Vibes” is? Even I didn’t really know what it means but under the excitement I just tried to express my feelings. J

Before you move on with second part of the story, I want you to watch this trailer of the movie “Track” based on Robyn Davidson’s solo trip of 1700 miles across the Australian Desert in 1997.

 Second part of my story:  As I introduced myself earlier in part one that I run guided tours in Kutch and show people around villages and communities. One of the day while driving through the flat deserted land (originally used to be Grassland) along with a group of Australian women, We saw camels along the way and that made me think of Robyn and I happily shared my story with my Australian group and one of the lady Beverly who told me that she lives one house away from Robyn.  Really!!?  You can imagine what would be my level of excitement! 😉 And as if it was not enough for me that day to be with a neighbor of my Hero, when we arrived back to Bhuj where Beverley hugged someone and walked down to the table where I was sitting and she told me to meet “Robyn Davidson” in person. I couldn’t believe that after 2 years, this is how I was accidently going to meet her. I immediately asked her to give me a hug as well and happily she did. We sat on the table along with my friend Katie and had hot lemon and honey drink. Beverley took our picture while I was joking with Robyn and I don’t even remember what it was. But I do remember that I asked her this question “What made you to do that Track?” and she replied “You have to be a bit crazy to do such thing” and it sums up so many things in that line.

Life is a short and beautiful journey and we must make most out of it. We must let ourselves seize every single day.

I said goodbye to everyone and went to my home, telling everyone how I met Robyn, how fortunate I felt to have met someone I have been truly inspired from. I think some people gives you chance to better understand the word “Freedom”

Today, after more than a year later, I and Robyn are together again, having fruits (lunch) and sharing our life stories, the way the world has shaped, our observations, opinions, hopes, realities, etc. are making even more sense why we meet such people in our lives, how our paths crosses and how the universe sometimes surprises us.

Is this purely a coincident or meant to happen?

I don’t know but what I truly believe is that if you follow your soul, it will lead you to them who follow their souls as well.  

Wish you all Love and Peace xx

Kuldip Gadhvi @Kutch Adventures India

March 2019