Of Curry and an Affront To Your Senses

Posted: December 18, 2012 in Life As I Know It, Travel
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

It’s been said that visiting India is an affront to every natural sense one possesses. Visually it’s overwhelming, majesty and squalor intermingling like so much peanut butter and jelly, only less tasty. Aurally it accosts you, forcing it’s way into your skull to let the simultaneous shouts and car horns and whistles and who knows what else reverberate inside. Its aroma confuses the brain, with equal parts “awesome” and “awful.” It’s hot, humid, and feels dirty. The tastes of the country will leave you spellbound, sweaty, and possibly wishing you had some bread and a glass of milk to wash the spice down. Oh, and no beef.

This is why I’m slightly nervous that I’m going to Kolkata (formerly Calcutta) for three weeks. This is, obviously, White Person Problems at its finest.

I’ve been asked to go to India for a few weeks to help do some refresher training for a company that does work for us in Asia. It’s an incredible opportunity, and means updating my blog a little more regularly, since I haven’t in almost a year. What started as a blog about traveling and learning and random musings became dormant and about little more than making me feel guilty every time I thought “I should update that.” Well, I guess it’s time to go again.

I’m heading out for three weeks, and am equal parts nervous and excited. It’s a pretty incredible opportunity to go to India, especially to get paid to go, and be provided excellent accommodations. I’m eager to see the sights and sounds and smells and challenge myself with my thoughts on social equity in the face of such, ostensibly, stark and overwhelming reminders of just how poor the rest of the world really is when compared to a White Male born in the United States of America. If it isn’t both challenging and rewarding when all is said and done, then I’ll clearly have done something wrong.

I depart on 1/3 and return on 1/24 or 1/25 or something. It’s long flights, pretty big layovers (in both Delhi and Mumbai for 4+ hours overnight, one each way — it will be very educational to hang out in two large Indian airports from 9p-3a and see what transpires. I will have a book and my camera.

So while I’m a little nervous I’m also really excited. I’m excited to try more Indian food, see if I can burn my face off with spicy curry, and overwhelm myself with all that Kolkata (and maybe Delhi) have to offer. I’m trying to swing a side-trip to Delhi for a weekend, and I’m also trying to see if I might be able to visit Nepal for a weekend as well. It won’t be cheap and it won’t be easy, but there’s no guarantee I’ll ever be able to have an experience like this to come.

So while I’ve been away for a while, I’m back! And it’s time to start writing again. I hope you’ll tag along as I post too many pictures and marginally inebriated ramblings of another journey abroad. Mark your calendars, shit gets real on 1/3/13.

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