To be honest I wasn’t looking forward to the trip as I hate flying and I had just read about the flight cancellation causing fog and dangerous pollutions levels in Delhi. But the troop really wanted to see the Taj. I am not really into monuments as such, and am more enthralled by nature or anything new that I can learn. Each trip changes me a little. This time I returned with a greater appreciation for:
1. Singapore’s diversity
2. Our clean air
3. Our awesome food (I realized that I can’t just exist on one type of cuisine and we are spoilt in this area in Singapore. I will state for the record that I think we have the best food in the world.)
4. Missed my family back home of course (even though it was just a week)
5. Missed having an internet connection and chatting over the smartphone with loved ones.
6. Just a clean environment
7. Feeling safe while walking the streets and not having to cling to your bags or have people stare at you
8. There is no corruption or bribery at work
9. Not having to use bottled water to brush my teeth
10. Because of all our trees the sun’s glare is more bearable
I just felt incredibly fortunate and I probably won’t be complaining for a while.
But on the other hand, I truly admired that in spite of all the honking of horns (which is more to say – please let me through) there is absolutely no road rage in India. People are so much more gracious and hospitable. There is more patience and a feeling of calmness and deep spirituality. It brought my anxiety levels down a whole notch.
I felt energized due to the abundance of nature everywhere – gliding eagles, flocks of tiny birds flying in unison to and fro, camels, buffalo, cows, bulls, horses, donkeys and monkeys. I also felt enlivened by the cool weather. It’s always a nice change not to sweat. The temperatures ranged from about 6 to 24 degrees. It was even colder due to heavy snowfall near the Himalayas.
I have to admit that my heart broke seeing toddlers beg. I have never seen the weight on the world on the face of a 3 year old and that was disturbing. Toddlers caked in dust and soot, while we were informed that politicians had humongous houses with 25 servants each, all paid for by the government. That just can’t be right.
This was my first trip to the North of India and I must say that I prefer the South (food and warmth of the people). But when it comes to movie making I think Bollywood is superior and I was totally enthralled. I even thought the gossip rags were more entertaining and bitchy than the Hollywood ones. It was my third trip to India and as my Aunt rightly told me, you may complain while in India, but it will always be a memorable trip that will shape you. Our driver said something that stuck in my mind – This is India. Everything is Possible.