Rukmini Vaish belongs to Delhi! She is a nature lover and is crazy about animals. She worked for 8 years with major companies in telecom and FMCG space after her MBA and then decided to take the entrepreneurial plunge. In 2016, she co-founded CollarFolk, a platform that helps families plan pet friendly holidays. In this interview, she talks about her travel experiences, her favourite food her love for the mountains.
Tell us all about your furry friends!
We have 3 babies at home – Kaiser, Thor and Kiki. The boys are black labs and Kiki is a golden retriever.
Kaiser is 9 years old, he’s my father-in-law’s best friend and gives me the in-law treatment from time to time! Thor is 3 years old and has decided to adopt me as his favourite person in the house. Kiki is going to be 2, she is a diva and the brat at home.
Which has been the most memorable holiday that you’ve had with your pets?
We recently went for a trek to Chopta and Tunganath (in Garhwal, Uttarakhand) with Kiki and Thor. We trekked for 3 days through jungles, meadows and scaled the Chandrashila peak at 13000 feet. The babies loved it! They were the pack leaders, literally guiding the group through the trail, jumped into every possible stream and were the first to reach the summit. In the evenings, we’d all enjoy the bon-fire and then cuddle up in one tent. It has to be the most fun and adventurous trips in recent times.
What’s your favorite way to unwind after a hard day at work?
I like to get into bed after an early dinner and read before calling it a day. Right now I am reading From Heaven Lake by Vikram Seth and am inspired to plan a trip to Tibet soon!
If not in India, where would you like to live and why?
I have been to Australia and love the outdoorsy lifestyle of the country. I often discuss with Vijay, my husband, that it would be great if we get an opportunity to move there for some years. The most amazing part about Australia is the beautiful shore line that runs across all major cities and the plethora of travel options within a couple of hours drive. Worth mentioning is the burgeoning food scene in the country, Master Chef Australia has me hooked.
What would be your advice to those who have never had a pet before but want to adopt one soon?
Bring home a pet if you have the time and energy of bringing home a baby who never grows up. Also, adopt, don’t shop.
What’s your favourite comfort food?
I love the Tamilian vegetable stews in the winter, I have been introduced to these wonderful recipes after getting married into a Tamil family.
If granted a wish, what would you ask for?
I wish to create an ecosystem where every pet lover is able to bring up a pet at home. There are so many families who love pets but are unable to have one due to their busy lifestyles and lack of organised service providers in the pet space. On the contrary, a country like the US has 2x number of pets as compared to babies, the pet services infrastructure there allows for this.
Which is your favourite travel destination in India?
Anywhere in the Himalayas – I am a mountain person.