Hon­ey­moon Al­bum 2.0

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - Brunch - - THE TRAVEL ISSUE - By Shikha Ku­mar

10 years and three kids later, ac­tors Samita and Ashish Chowdhry went to the Maldives to rekin­dle their ro­mance. Here are a few Snapchat-wor­thy mo­ments to re­mem­ber

In a so­cial-me­dia uni­verse, can Twit­ter help a cou­ple re­de­fine their idea of a hol­i­day? Ac­tor Ashish Chowdhry seems to be a firm be­liever. Early last month, he stum­bled upon a gor­geous pic­ture of a then-unidentified is­land, which nes­tled in its midst a gor­geous re­sort with pri­vate vil­las, pools and more. Tweet­ing the pic­ture, he asked his fol­low­ers if they knew where this ‘par­adise’ lay. A week later, Ashish and his wife Samita Ban­gargi were on a sea­plane to the pic­turesque Hu­va­hend­hoo is­land in the Maldives. For the cou­ple, the dream va­ca­tion was a sec­ond hon­ey­moon. They’ve been mar­ried for ten years, and have three kids – son Agastya and twin daugh­ters, Salara and Sammah. They left their kids with Ashish’s par­ents and took off.

Soon enough, their pics hash­tagged #livin­gitup, #re­ju­ve­na­tion, #beauty started do­ing the rounds. “It’s a crazy life at home, with the kids, work com­mit­ments, and we’re in the middle of shift­ing houses,” says Samita, as Ashish adds, “I hardly ever take hol­i­days. Even when I’m shooting abroad, I never ex­tend my trips. This hol­i­day was like press­ing the restart but­ton.”

In­ter­est­ingly, the pris­tine beauty in their pic­tures is al­most over­shad­owed by the cou­ple’s crack­ling chem­istry and fit physiques. Chowdhry is a known gym rat, but how does Samita keep her­self so fit af­ter three kids? “I’m a fan of func­tional train­ing and crossfit. While I don’t diet, my metabolism isn’t the same as be­fore, so I eat healthy. Ashish’s ob­ses­sion is in­spir­ing,’’ she says.

The cou­ple has been to­gether for nearly two decades, but Samita says that they’re as dif­fer­ent as chalk and cheese and spar on many is­sues – he’s ob­ses­sive about clean­li­ness while she’s messy; she loves to party while he’s more a fam­ily guy. Through­out it all, they’ve found a method to the mad­ness. When Samita lazed on the sun­deck, the ad­ven­tur­ous hus­band in­dulged in jet blad­ing. To­gether, they snorkelled to the depths of the ocean, dis­cov­er­ing co­ral reefs and colour­ful marine life. “We’re be­yond those ini­tial is­sues of trust and jeal­ousy that plague cou­ples. Now, our fights cen­tre around the kids,” says Ashish. Their se­cret to a suc­cess­ful re­la­tion­ship has been a com­bi­na­tion of mu­tual sac­ri­fice, com­pro­mise, re­spect and un­der­stand­ing. “Weird as it may sound, I don’t be­lieve in ‘love’. Be­cause if that’s the only driv­ing emo­tion, it will fiz­zle out soon when you live to­gether,” he adds.

“I do not be­lieve in love... if that's the only driv­ing emo­tion, it'll fiz­zle out soon.” ASHISH CHOWDHRY

LAID OUT NICELY “I get a very bad tan,” says Samita, who spent most of the time on the lounge chair, while Ashish chilled in the pool. “Hol­i­days are in­com­plete with­out a tan,” he says

KISS AND TELL The gor­geous back­ground called for a cheesy, ro­man­tic pic­ture. ‘‘The pic­ture was staged, but the feel­ings weren’t,’’ says Ashish

BUB­BLING UN­DER THE SUR­FACE When they went snorkelling, “The ex­pe­ri­ence was al­most med­i­ta­tive,” says Samita

THE FUN OF FLY­ING Ashish calls Samita a big fattu when it comes to fly­ing. “She ac­tu­ally prays be­fore take off and land­ing, it’s very cute,” he says

WALK­ING ON WA­TER Ad­ven­ture junkie Ashish tried out fly­board­ing for the first time. It's a wa­ter­sport that in­volves balancing midair on a ski that is pow­ered by a speed­boat. “Once I got the hang of it, I con­tin­ued for nearly three hours."

GUNS AND POSES Most pic­tures were clicked by their butler. But de­spite the lack of pro­fes­sional pho­tog­ra­phy, the chem­istry shone through. “Samita’s a nat­u­ral poser, so she just tells me what to do,” says Ashish

WALK THE TALK Spend­ing qual­ity time com­prised of long, peaceful walks and ro­man­tic, can­dle­light din­ners

LOVE ME TEN­DER, LOVE ME TRUE Ashish and Samita get into the mood for love by a blue, blue la­goon

PIER PRES­SURE: Samita strikes a pose by the pier

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