I’m an experience junkie, says Aditi Mittal

Image courtesy: ©Aditi Mittal

One of the first female Indian stand-up comedians, Aditi Mittal is busy on her travels for the Global Village Idiot show. Here, she shares some travel laughs with us.

What’s a crazy comic moment you have experienced on one of your travels?

At airports or stations I usually lie when I’m asked what I do to avoid telling a joke for free. I often make stuff up. It could be “a curator of Mughal architecture” or “I’m a lehenga-only maker, no cholis, please excuse”, kind of spiel. That’s what I told a lady travelling to Delhi from Mumbai, only to have her land up at my show in the evening with her daughter in tow.

What’s common between comedy and travel?

Much like travel, which is more about the journey than the destination, the run up to the stand-up routine, is as much fun as milking the audience for laughs at the end.

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Image courtesy: ©Aditi Mittal

What city/destination has laughed the loudest at your jokes?

Delhi, Bangalore, Shillong and Coimbatore are the cities where I found the people laughing their hearts out with abandon.

Which cities lend themselves to people/city jokes?

Jaipur! I mean it’s such an ornate, beautiful, regal city, that even toilets looks like thrones! I find that cities with history and grandeur lend themselves well to laughs.

Image courtesy: ©Aditi Mittal

How do you maintain a sense of humour when your luggage is lost during travel?

Make a joke out of it, as there’s nothing much you can do. I once lost my luggage in Kolkata and was glad I landed in Goa next, where a fat suitcase with clothes is not too important.

Do you prefer to travel as a pack or solo?

Always solo! For my own sanity and those of co-travellers because I’m usually the slowest and take more time than others; I can keep them waiting staring endlessly at a monument or a sunset.

What’s the one thing women must carry/be aware of while travelling solo in India?

A smile and an awareness of what your destination holds and always a phone number to call locally for any emergencies.

Image courtesy: ©Aditi Mittal

What are your travel weaknesses (food/shopping/sights/or anything else)?

I’d say I’m an experience junkie. I love destinations with history. On my walks in Lucknow during my last visit, I was charmed by the neighbourhoods bursting with character. Places with their own stories always interest me.

Do you prefer to carry back souvenirs or memories from travels?

My fridge is covered with travel magnets! Since that’s done and dusted, it’s memories always. I find my materialistic needs waning and my new attachment is travel experiences. And thanks to travel for my stand-up work, I find that people and the kindness they show are the highlights of my travels.

What’s your travel avatar: a selfie maniac? A slow traveller? A tick-box tourist? Or anything else?

I’m a “pyjama traveller” yaar. I’m most comfortable in clothes four sizes big, chappals and a worn sweatshirt so that I can fit myself in any train or place without a care.