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Intel India top boss learnt key lesson on his first trek: One size will not fit all

Prakash Mallya went on hist first-ever trek in 2011-12, and came back with valuable lessons.

, ET Bureau|
Last Updated: Sep 25, 2019, 06.29 PM IST
Prakash Mallya with wife Anjali in Israel.
Prakash Mallya, VP & MD, Sales and Marketing Group of Intel India, says he prefers discovering new places rather than visiting the same location twice

Out of my comfort zone
“I consider myself a fit person. However, climbing mountains is something I had never done until 2011-12, when a group from the office decided to trek Malaysia’s Mt Kinabalu. We had to push for the final ascent at about 3 am and reached the summit by sunrise, which was difficult, especially in the dark. Reaching the top was a fantastic feeling, but while climbing down, we realised the sheer rock face with steep drops that we climbed in the dark.

“I still have fond memories of that entire trip, as I could spend time with Uday Marty, one of the finest human beings I had the privilege of knowing. He was our company vice-president who passed away during a climbing accident on Mt Rainer a few months after this trek.

“The trek taught me that different things in life demand different skills, and one size will not fit all. It also taught me that life is too short, and one won’t get another opportunity. So, live life to the fullest every day.”

A journey cut short
“This happened when my wife Anjali and I went to Bali for a holiday in 2005. We were staying at a resort a bit further from the beach. We went to Jimbaran beach for a seafood dinner. We were not even half-way through our meal when the restaurant started shutting down and they asked us to leave immediately. We couldn’t figure out what was happening.

“On our way back to the resort, we saw several chaotic scenes on the road. We switched on the TV after reaching our room and saw news of the Bali bombings, which happened at a restaurant on Jimbaran beach. We were really shocked.”

A place to return
“I believe the world is a beautiful place with many things yet to be explored. So, while I am tempted to return to the same place, I rarely do that. My goal is to visit 100 countries in my lifetime, and I’m at 64 now. I love adventure and exploring the unexplored. So, I will always prefer to visit newer places rather than go back to ones I have been to before.

“That said, however, Goa is a place that I have been to multiple times due to family celebrations or holidays, and it’s always fun.”

Mallya ​​loves the wildlife and has made trips to Botswana, Masai Mara in Kenya.​
Mallya loves the wildlife and has made trips to Botswana, Masai Mara in Kenya.

Travel as a teacher
“Travel is a great leveller and provides one with a unique first-hand perspective. Visiting the temples of Ajanta and Ellora, the ruins of Hampi, the Mughal architecture in Delhi and Lucknow, where I grew up… they all make me feel so proud of everything we have.

“Similarly, when you witness the pyramids of Giza or the Great Wall of China, it makes you wonder at the ingenuity of our ancestors. New Zealand, South Africa, Morocco and Japan also have some of the most pristine natural beauty, and one can go back to them repeatedly.

“Travelling also makes you realise how similar we are as humans despite living in different countries, and how similar our challenges are. Celebrating this diversity can make it better for everybody. “I love wildlife and the trips we made to Botswana, Masai Mara in Kenya, as well as Kabini Tiger Reserve and Gir forest in India all were phenomenal. However, the trips also highlighted how these environments are at extreme risk.”.

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