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Thoughts on India {Preface}

By on Jun 4, 2012 in Travel Coloumn | 0 comments

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Thumbs Up in India

Thumbs Up in India

If I’m honest with you my faithful readers, its taken me a good four months before I could put pen to paper on Niki and I’s time in India, which we visited at the start of the year for our blog series Search For The Forgotten Tree. With the risk of sounding melodramatic and forgive me as it’s a writers privy to do so; however I needed the time to process my experiences. Experiences that left me questioning the world we live in, the west versus east mentality and an experience that ultimately leads me to being rushed through Kuala Lumpur in the back of an Ambulance with suspected Malaria.

However that is a story for another day.

So in the end, with this creative sabbatical, my writings and hence the Travel Project took a break. The break was needed so that I could process my thoughts which were consumed with India and to decide how to write about a journey that I have no idea how to explain.

To bring you up to date on our happenings. Niki and I ended up spending three weeks in India, two months shorter than we planned. We did a quick tour of Mumbai, Delhi, Jaipur, Pushka and Agra. If you’ve travelled to India before, you can tell straight away that we had tried to see too much in three weeks and you’d be questioning how much we actually saw at all these places. You’d be right to question this as your assumptions would be correct.

A lack of planning and budget, led to our travelling plans going askew due to booked out trains, over priced accommodation and trying to travel long distances in a short time frame. We also underestimated the culture shock, something I haven’t experienced since my very first trip to Indonesia over ten years ago. In conclusion, we bit off more than we could chew and our travel plans fell into tatters as we choked on our inability to adapt to India.

However, don’t they say (cringe) that the ‘destination is all about the journey’ – well if this is the case, Niki and I walked away with many experiences and a change of attitude in both the way we travel and how we see life. Yet we didn’t walk away feeling happy that we had successfully visited (understood) a destination. We walked away with a big dose of reality and our tail firmly wedged between our legs.

A message that says loud and clear, India is not for tourists to come and demand a spiritual holiday from, because you won’t be given one if you do. No, you have to earn it through respect and understanding the culture and the people. India, a juxtaposition of the extremely poor and the incredibly rich all held together by an incredible national pride.

With this preface out of the way and an understanding to my readers that the continuing part of the India and Sri Lanka blog won’t be as light-hearted as the first half, my mind now ponders on where I should start this second part of the Search for Forgotten Tree blog series.  If I’m honest and I’m trying to be,  deep down I always knew my India posts would always begin like this and so it seems, I shall start with death…

This post is part of the India and Sri Lanka: The Search for the Forgotten Tree blog series.
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