I wanted my blog to be something funny; something which made you laugh (or at least smile) when you read it. Because my experiences in India were most of the time hilarious. But you’ll have to excuse me. When talking about India the first thing I have to do is to thank the people who made my stay there extremely pleasant. Without them it wouldn’t have been the same!
I’ll name a few of them although they may never read this, since they don’t have access to the internet. I wouldn’t like to forget any! Leena, Selvi and Tharun, Anitha, Aravind and Arpi, Mechamma and her four children, Marthama and her two daughters, Anu and Navya, Rani, Gopi and their children, Gupta, the children who stayed at the boarding school, the children at school, all the people in Marlapalli, Singuirigunta, Aravapalli and Punganur,… The list could go on and on…
They are friends who were next to me when things were not that easy, when I cried (I’m a weepy sort of person), when I had no family by my side to celebrate things with, when I needed a hug (even though in India people don’t hug each other, they comforted me in other ways!). People who gave me everything they had: their food (they even bought me, with their low wages, apples, fish or pork (which are quite expensive) so that I didn’t miss “my” food), their drinks (as I was losing quite a lot of weight since I didn’t like spicy food, they even prepared ragi ganji for me. They said it would give me strength!),… their friendship. They lent me their clothes whenever they hold a special festival so that I looked prettier (since, for them (not for me), I looked nicer than in my western clothes), they combed my hair and put flowers on my head every single day (which was something that I loathed at the beginning). They took care of me when I was ill (only twice! Well, actually once I had the flu and the other time I had an awful hangover (but they didn’t know!)). Summing up, they never let me alone!
I remember once, about a month after my arrival. It was raining cats and dogs. My friend, (I’ll talk about him in the next blog, since due to his patience he deserves a special chapter) wasn’t there; he was working. Anitha, her husband Aravind and Gopi wouldn’t leave me on my own (in a huge boarding school, without electricity, and with snakes and scorpions around). They were there for three hours waiting with me for my friend to arrive. They could easily have gone home with their families, but there they were! Staring at me astonished (because the only thing I could do was cry seeing the way they treated me just after knowing me for some days!) and consoling me in their language (Telugu, which I didn’t understand at the time!). They told me, in their English, I was part of their family and they’d never leave any member of their family alone, so…
From that moment on I felt part of my heart belonged to India!
Being there taught me valuable lessons, which have made a stronger and, in my opinion, a better person of me.