I thought I’d do a short blog with a list of observations.
1. It’s smart to be pleasant to a man with a shotgun or an AK47.
2. People leave their hand permanently on their car horn because they don’t use their signals or their lights at night.
3. Not a trash can in sight; when there is one, it cannot be one that could be used as scrap metal or it will be gone in minutes. It is no wonder people throw trash everywhere.
4. I would make a good wife, apparently. I could make many Indian men happy.
5. I am 50 times richer than them because my conversion rate is fifty rupees to one dollar. That means I can pay 50 times more for everything, which is why they put down a price and usually multiply it by 50.
6. To get on a bus, you have to do a running jump. There are no elderly or disabled people on the buses.
7. Some buses are labeled: goods carriage, space boy, shredders cattle.
8. Every day when I eat, goats pass me by on the way to the slaughterhouse.
9. Crows are everywhere, even in my windows, begging and stealing.
10. Prostitution and drugs are rampant, similar to any country.
11. According to Indians, I obviously want to have sex with Indians or backpackers because I’m a traveler with blonde hair. I am annoyed with the stupid western women who have given us a bad name.
12. I pass a murderer from Amsterdam every day, who lives here permanently to avoid jail in his own country and doesn’t grasp that my one word answers mean that I wont sleep with him. (He took video of some other girl he slept with and shows it to everyone, disgusting)
13. I see signs of sexual abuse from a spunky girl who sells decorative balls and will pick your pockets if you let your guard down.
14. I am ok with the germs now, but I plan to donate my shoes because I know I am walking in a lot of stuff that I don’t even realize.
15. People wash themselves in the dirty gutters and their bathroom is generally kitty-corner.
16. The sisters do really good work and I’m surprised by their level of compassion. I only hope I can leave with that same commitment to serve for the rest of my life.
17. The dentist’s office that I visited was sanitary, except for the moment she washed something under tap water and rolled some putty and light base together on a newspaper. She multiplied the price by 50 so a root canal is 300 dollars, even though my friend is Australian and their conversion rate is half of that. The bedside manner was awful and the dentist felt it necessary to scream at my friend for crying and call her a baby when she was asked for anesthesia during a root canal.
18. I avoid going to pubs with backpackers as their lifestyle does not impress me, nor does the idea of weakening my immune system. Every time I hear a traveler say, India is so great and perfect, I wonder if they have looked around and thought about what they say.
19. I feel free from not spending/wasting so much time on the internet at home. It is incredible how tied we get to things that are so fleeting and unimportant.
20. I have changed as a traveler. I am no longer interested in having that same conversation of where I’m from, what I do and how long I’m staying. I am here for God, for myself, for my family and friends and in thanksgiving for the people in my life, for the opportunities and love my parents gave me, for my brother who surprises me constantly and my husband, my best friend and our future. I am here to sacrifice a bit of myself for their prayers and petitions. I am here to learn how to love more deeply and to understand a culture which requires me to completely step out of myself and throw away norms. I am here to find some private answers and here to give a little joy to disabled children and the dying elderly.