Are you an avid traveller looking to go global and explore the world? Are you ready for new adventures? Have you ever dreamt about travelling to India and what you will discover in such a diverse and unique country?
In this post, one of our World Volunteering Destination Managers shares his experience in India and paints you a picture of what he felt about the country and what he discovered about himself while travelling there.
Traffic, honks, tuk-tuks, rickshaws, cars… Cows, monkeys, elephants, snakes, camels, goats, pigeons, rats… Aromas, colours, smiles, music, dances… Poverty, greatness, luxury, filth, palaces, temples, INEQUALITY… Hugs, encounters, love… Flavours, parties, flowers, offerings, necklaces… Saris, turbans, bindis, Muslims, Hindis, Christians, prayers and gods… Joy, curiosity, pictures, happiness… Fusion… CONTRAST… Mess… Laughter… Meditation…. The Ganges… Warm and warmth… Peace, relaxation, tranquillity and PATIENCE… And more cows and more prayers and more noise and more and more people… And so many more SMILES.
I would come back over and over to this amazing country. Maybe if doing so, one day I will be able to understand it and make sense of its overwhelming magic. Those smiles… Those smiles that are ALWAYS there despite any poverty that may surround them… An economic poverty, sure, but never a poverty of spirit and soul.
When people ask me ‘why India?’, ‘why do you like it so much?’, well, mainly because all of this and so much more that it conceals. Because every step I take I discover a new world. Because it takes you out of any mental structure you may have… It loses me… I don’t get it… And besides my extreme rationality, I like that. It challenges me. It unwinds me. It inspires me. It opens my mind, my senses and my heart at the same time. It fills my head with doubts, with questions. I feel like I’ve forgotten about it. It wakes me up. It complicates me, annoys me, confuses me… It leads me to judge, but only to instantly break any prejudice I may have and remind me not to ever do that again. It makes me feel dizzy. It cheers me up. It infuriates me. It makes me feel impotent at times, but lifts me up with hope when I need it the most.
I fell deeply in love with the place, but I don’t get it. Maybe I never will, but that’s what’s so magical about it.
What is India? India to me is this mixture… contrast… these doubts… these constant doubts and changes that leads me to make up my mind every two minutes. India is learning to me, endless learning It’s a mixture of emotions that get your heart beating so fast, but only to teach how to slow it down… how to stop… How to enjoy… How to observe and appreciate without any misconceptions, but with all your senses wide open and willing to be amazed and just let go… ENJOY… Enjoy every minute we have.
And that’s what took me to India more than a couple of times…. That’s why I never want to stop going there. I don’t want to ever stop learning and being amazed. I never want to stop meeting its fantastic people, and learning from them when I instead thought I’d be there to teach them and share my knowledge. I love this amazing two way street and exchange of ideas that helps unite us.
So much to do, so much to see and feel, so much to give, so much to help with, so much to learn, so much to gain, so much to be helped with.
Thank you, India. Sorry, India.
I hope to see you again very soon!
Feeling inspired? Confused? Maybe, like our colleague, you just need to visit this country to begin to understand it.
So, if you are eager to take a hands-on role in helping bring relief to different communities, while learning so much about what the country and its people have to offer, please check these amazing volunteer projects and communities we are working with.
Or, drop us and email and chat to our World Volunteering specialists.