Well, I don't even know where to begin with India, there is so much running through my head about it! I absolutely loved it, but in a completely different way than any other person, place or thing. It was very dirty, smelled terrible, and a lot of poverty, homeless people and beggars...you might wonder what there is to love about it; honestly I am too...but it was beautiful - but not in a pretty way! India was a total emotional roller coaster for me. It breaks your heart when your on the train and little boys are scrubbing the floor beneath your feet and expect money or food for their services and you have nothing to give them - or when women hold up their shirts/saris and you see nothing but a belly button and ribs, but you don't have food to give them, or walking to your bus and crippled men are begging on their knees, but again, have nothing to give them. You get annoyed when a family comes and sits on you while your trying to sleep during your 3 1/2 hour train ride from Delhi to Agra sitting in Non-Air conditioned Second Class Sleeper section, but delighted when the mothers are thrilled that you want to take their pictures and play with their kids the remainder of the train ride and excited by the smiles on the kids faces when you show them the pictures. Your frustrated when every time you get off the bus or are getting back on, people are flocking you trying to sell postcards, pens, key chains, bangles, chess sets...anything under the sun and will continue banging on the windows and trying to climb into the bus until our tour guide is literally having to kick them to get them off the bus. You are scared while in traffic anywhere in India...there are no lanes, where ever you can fit, you go! There will be some cars coming head on to you on both sides and mopeds weaving in and out, people walking in between all of the action and ladies have no problem sitting sideways on the back of a moped holding their child and don't even flinch! Mind you there were parts when I, while sitting on the bus, would cover my eyes because i was scared! You have another flood of emotions while riding in a rickshaw (which is a 3 wheeled motorized cart which is the main mode of transportation in India) your excited for the experience, nervous because you are now the smallest thing on the road, wonder if the driver really knows where he's going because the language barrier is always a factor, scared when the driver let Leah, Candace and I drive the rickshaw and relieved when you always make it safely, confused when the rickshaw gets pulled over, was it because there was 5 people in a 3 person rickshaw, or was it because i was driving. Your body is flushed with complete amazement when you finally see the Taj Mahal in real life. A lot of people weren't as impressed with it as they expected, but it definitely hit me when i first saw it through the archway of another building - I still get goosebumps and almost breathless when i think about it and look at my pictures...If any of y'all get the chance GO SEE IT!! its remarkable. You are disgusted by the smells..you can't really pick out a smell..just the smell of India... a mixture of sweat, body odor, urine, cows, cow pies and the works. You are anxious to see how many cows are lined in the middle of the road or count the number of times you have to stop because a cow is sleeping or walking in the middle of the road and wait for him because cows have the right of way in India! You are most excited when you set sail again and realize you were not hit with the "Delhi Belly" (which causes severe GI Track problems..if you know what i mean) and did not even eat Pepto Bismol before your meals!! And the food was good too, some were a little spicy, but definitely a fan of the bread called Nan, curry and butter chicken, which is really not butter on chicken, i don't know what it is but maybe its in my cook book I got.
Then you get back on the ship and everyone is asking how India was to everyone in sight, but no one can describe it, we all experienced such different things and everything is so indescribable. So why do we keep asking? To see if someone else has come up with a good analogy? To see if someone had a bad time? Maybe come up with ideas for your NEXT trip to India, I don't really know, but I think the reason we didn't have school on the day after India is to allow a day for us to digest what we have just seen, experienced, smelled, everything in India.