In spite of poverty and social stigmas of his “untouchable” caste, Pradyumna Kumar Mahanandia earned a place as a student at the College of Art in New Delhi.
He was a street artist and people thought his portraits of Indira Gandhi was so beautifully made that he had a lot of requests to have theirs done. One of those was Charlotte Von Schedvin, who was touring India.
They soon fell in love and got married. Charlotte, however, had to return home to Sweden. She offered to pay for Pradyumna’s plane ticket, but he had too much pride to accept and promised he would make the money on his own. They kept in touch through letters.
After a year, he still wasn’t able to save up enough to buy a plane ticket.
He sold all his possessions to buy a bicycle. He then cycled for four months and three weeks, covering 6,000 miles across Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, Germany, Austria, and Denmark to get to Sweden.
They are still happily married 40 years later, and live in Sweden with their two children. Pradyumna became a well-known artist and is a cultural ambassador.
When asked about his arduous journey, his reply was, “I did what I had to, I had no money but I had to meet her. I was cycling for love, but never loved cycling. It’s simple.”
Sometimes, you meet somebody and you just know they’re the one. Will you travel thousands of miles to connect with that person?
What is love? Is it the feeling of butterflies in your stomach or an infatuation that you’ll do anything for? Love can be dangerous, full of anger and destruction; but it can also be a source of happiness that fills out hearts with endless amounts of joy. At the end of the day, love is complicated, but it’s an important part of being human - to love and be loved.
Whether you’ve found the right person, or are still looking, this is a good week to ponder the priority you’ve assigned “Friends & Relationships” in your life, and to ask whether you need to make any adjustments.
Love knows no boundaries, so with that - Happy Valentines! ❤️
🍺 to a great week ahead!