Nick and Raj

Nick Carson in conversation with
Raj Sharma

Raj Sharma guided Nick, his girlfriend (now wife) and a small group of others around India in 2016. Raj’s passion, warmth, knowledge and humour made the trip unforgettable – and he went on to establish his own tour company, Horizon Journeys.

Note 1: March-May

A guide in Northern India, Raj’s work dried up when COVID-19 hit. “I’m really worried,” he admits. “I react with a lot of anger sometimes.”

He lives with his wife (“a calmer person than me”), sister and parents in Jaipur. His father is bed-ridden; additional worry.

Raj initially shrugged off news of the virus. But panic began in early March: an Italian couple had tested positive in his city.

“I was surrounded by foreign tourists carrying God knows what,” he recalls. He led his last tour in mid-March, with a mask and hand-sanitiser. A week later, India was in lockdown.

Passionate about travel, culture and meeting new people, Raj now passes time watching movies. He’s not optimistic about work picking up before 2021 – fortunately his wife, a teacher, can continue to work remotely.

“I’m a proud, independent individual, but my ambitions have lessened,” he says. “I’ve realised you only need the basics.”

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