Liam Plunkett is determined to relish the sights, sounds and culture of the sub-continent as he attempts to make the most of his surprise inclusion on England's tour to Pakistan this winter.
The 20-year-old Durham seamer has been elevated into the 16-man squad which departs for Islamabad on Tuesday for an eight-week tour comprising three Tests and five one- day internationals.
Originally included just for the one-day section of the tour, the withdrawal of Simon Jones with an ankle injury gives Plunkett an ideal opportunity to learn from the Ashes-winning squad and continue his development as the most highly-rated seam bowler to emerge from Durham since Steve Harmison.
He is unlikely to force his way into a Test line-up and he could face a hard slog as a net bowler or drinks waiter in notoriously tough conditions.
But unlike county teammate Harmison, who has suffered with homesickness throughout his career and famously returned home from an under-19s tour to Pakistan in 1996, Plunkett plans to immerse himself in the conditions and learn from the experience. "I don't mind going away from home," revealed Plunkett, who has already tasted life on the subcontinent during the youth World Cup in Bangladesh two winters ago.
"The conditions are likely to be similar to what I experienced in Bangladesh so that should help me.
"Going to Bangladesh was a massive culture shock, there is more poverty and the food is different and you can get a stomach bug, but it was a good experience and I like doing things like that.
"Being away from home and experiencing new things is something I like to do. I know Harmi gets homesick, but I'm the opposite - I love being away.
"It's great to experience new cultures, being away with a set of lads and just enjoying it. I'm doing something I love doing when I play cricket so I'm really looking forward to it.
"Harmi is one of those people that's always going to have a bit of homesickness and he's entitled to because he's missing his family, but I've only got my parents and my girlfriend to worry about and cricket is the main thing for me at the moment."
While the two Durham fast bowlers may differ in their approaches to life on tour away from the cricket, Plunkett will soak up every bit of advice he can from his mentor.
Durham won all four matches they played together at the start of the season and they claimed 44 wickets between them to briefly lead the second division title race.
That period was invaluable to Plunkett's development and enabled him to contribute 51 wickets towards Durham's successful promotion bid.
"I didn't play a lot with him but during those games we played against Leicestershire, Worcestershire, Somerset and Lancashire he helped me a lot," said Plunkett.
"He tried to help me with my bowling and I generally took advice from him. I used to watch him bowl a lot and that has been a big help to me."
Those first few weeks of the season also enabled Plunkett to exceed his own ambitions for this season, which were initially to claim 50 wickets or more and book a place at the National Academy in
Loughborough this winter.
His impressive performances at both forms of the game ensured he achieved both, although his time at the Academy may be cut short if he impresses in Pakistan and is included in the squad to tour India next February.
"It was amazing to get the phone call from David Graveney to tell me I was being selected for the onedayers," Plunkett revealed.
"Then I got another call a
week later to say I was taking over from Simon Jones. I never thought about any of that at the start of the year - my main aim was to get wickets regularly and everything else has just been a massive bonus.
"It would be great if I had a chance of getting a game, but I'm going out there realising I might be 12th man a lot and carrying the drinks. Just to be part of the squad is massive for me and I'm looking
"Even if I don't play, if I impress in the net sessions and show my commitment then they might look at me for the India tour, but that's not my main aim at the moment - my big aim is to make an impact."