Zanskar to Ziro: No Stilettos in the Himalayas is a travelogue about two women’s decade-long love affair with the Himalayas. Their 10,000-kilometre trail stretched from the remote Zanskar Valley in Ladakh through Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Nepal, Sikkim, Bengal and Bhutan to Ziro in Arunachal Pradesh.
It is the ‘female gaze’ that sets this book apart, since it also narrates how women cope with ‘being woman’ in an unfamiliar land. The two ladies have had an eye for the aesthetic and the curious, a heart for the exotic, and an ear for the local lore, or even a recipe.
Zanskar to Ziro: No Stilettos in the Himalayas emerges thus as an infusion of luxuriant landscapes and rich history, a successful evocation of a sense of place. The book is further enriched by echoes and allusions from all that the ladies have read, and high-quality visuals.
The acceptance that comes from having lived half of one’s life has allowed the travellers to wade across difficulties with a sense of humour—often self-deprecating—that twinkles through the book.