It’s been a dream of mine for a long time to spend six months in India and see how it feels to be immersed in their culture for an extended period of time. This year, thanks to some unfortunate events that have turned into a blessing in disguise, I’ve been able to come to India and fulfill that dream.
I’ve just completed the first month of the six month experiment and I can already tell you that I know now why I never wanted to return home at the end of a month. A month is just enough time to get your feet wet and not enough time to feel settled. I am beginning to feel settled. I like the feeling of being in India. I’m moving around some, seeing old friends and making some new ones, and visiting some new places for fresh stories for all of my blog readers.
Just this morning, sitting on my terrace having coffee, in the bright sunshine of a cool October day in Himachal Pradesh I almost feel like a resident of the place. I have my Tracy Chapman playing softly from the computer. (Thank goodness I thought to download music before I came. The wi-fi access is not dependable and I could never be without my music.) This beautiful landscape, these enormous and beautiful mountains, and the musical comforts of home make me feel at peace…I feel one with this place. I’m already so attached I am sure I will try to return before I leave in March.
I‘ll also return to Amritsar because the beauty and serenity of the place was lost to me when I visited during Diwali. It’s one of my favorite places and I don’t want that suffocating crowd to be the impression I take away from the place. I must return to feel the presence of the almighty God there.
I’ve seen so many of my friends in Delhi, Chandigarh, and Amritsar and made new ones in McLeod Ganj. The length of this trip will allow me to visit all of my old friends and go to many places I haven’t visited before. I’ll be visiting McLeod Ganj, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Ludhiana, Haridwar, Dehradun, and Mussoorie for the first time.
I’m hoping to meet many new friends like I have here in McLeod Ganj. I’ve met a lot of fellow travelers as well as locals. Met Victoria, a very sweet woman with an amazing smile, from Russia. I also met a very hippie family from South Africa. Mom and dad about my age with two hippie offspring as well. They were totally free spirits and I clicked with them right away.
Everyone’s stories are interesting. Traveling is such a learning experience. And as Cat Stevens sang “we’re only dancing on this Earth for a short time.” So my advice to all of you is to get out there and connect with the rest of humanity, see the World. The more people travel the more peace will come to this World. If we know each other we can always talk. Hoping to find many more people to connect with via my blog.
Last night a bunch of us were sitting around a bonfire fire pit and talking about where we came from and our hopes and dreams for the future. I met a new friend from Amritsar who swears I look like her mother-in-law. Later her husband made the same comment. I intend to go meet this Indian twin when I return to Amritsar. Can you believe this blonde from the states has any resemblance to an Indian? Hahaha Well, maybe now I’ve spent so much time in India I’m beginning to turn into one!
I also finally got the nerve to sing a Hindi song during karaoke. I managed to get all the way through it and surprised everyone. This is my thirteenth and longest trip and honestly right now I wish it would last forever.