World Travel

Incommunicado

I have been incommunicado due to the difficulty of Internet access, a busy schedule, and getting settled in a foreign land. Although it has been great, everything is difficult in India.

To give you some sense of what I mean, here is an example from a short shopping trip to a Delhi department store. When you choose something for purchase, you don’t put it in a basket to be rang up by a cashier. Instead you give it to a clerk who records your purchase (sometimes this is hand-written), and then gives the items to another person who takes your selections from that area to a central clearing area while you continue to shop. When you are ready to make payment, you go to a large central cashier who totals up all of your slips and charges you for your purchases. You then go to another area where your paid receipt is given to a person who pulls your bagged items for a central location, stamps each slip from each area you made selections from, and then gives it to another person. The last individual then does an inventory check of each item in each bag from each area you have made selections from, then you FINALLY get your purchases.

In my mind I see this as related to the enormous population of India’s 3.2 billion people needing employment, but I could be wrong. Regardless, this is a prime example of how difficult most things can be in India.

This is India.

More updates on the Delhi experiences soon.

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Amazing Delhi

Delhi has provided an amazing four days! My #HHTeacherTrek is off to an incredible start. I have found myself speechless multiple times for a variety of reasons

The people we have interacted with are profoundly friendly and helpful, the historic and cultural sites are rich with history and stunningly beautiful, and the cultural experiences are deep in intensity. Color abounds and cultural variety is everywhere including Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Jain, and tribal traditions. A variety of flavorful food can be found easily, reflecting the rich cultural heritage of Delhi’s dynamic population and long history due to the country’s role in the spice trade.

The city, and India for that matter, are not for the faint of heart. It is a place of extremes and of paradoxes. The beauty of the many cultural, historic, and residential sites is juxtaposed against widespread, extreme poverty and the unsanitary conditions the poor and working classes endure. Traffic is extremely challenging with cars, bikes, motorcycles, auto-rickshaws, mopeds, buses, & trucks forever pushing forward to their destinations. Traffic lanes, although painted on the streets, are merely suggestions. And always present are the honking of horns used as a simple and frequently warning to communicate one’s presence or intended direction in the jostling commotion.

Delhi’s historic and cultural site are numerous, many bearing great significance. Multiple locations are World Heritage sites. The historic importance of many Delhi locations reflect a long history of Hindu and Muslim influences. The establishment of the Mughal empire in the 14th century has resulted in Persian influences through the present. But Delhi is not just steeped in ancient world history. Sites of contemporary significance and reverence can be found at locations such as India Gate — a WWI Memorial, and the Raj Ghat — the place along the Yamuna river where Ghandi Ji and other revered figures were cremated.

Delhi’s Khan Market is a bustling and hip urban center. Fashionista’s can satisfy their cravings at trendy boutiques. Western and Indian styles meld together amidst streets teaming with motorcycles filled with colorfully dressed women in flowing, silk saris riding side-saddle behind their boyfriend drivers. Khan Chacha provides flavorful kabobs and other street-foods in a clean and inexpensive setting, accessed through a narrow alley that is distinctly Indian.

Religion is a very significant element of daily life in Delhi, and all of India. It is a subject worthy of many additional posts. Of course, Hinduism provides the major religious current in India however, Islam is present throughout, and a fast-growing tradition. Although India is the home of Buddhism, they constitute a small minority. Jainism, a religion with roots in Hinduism, can be found but is a minority presence as is the Sikh tradition.

One could go on and on about Delhi, but this will have to suffice for now. As time permits, more posts about individual topics will follow.

Namaste.

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Indimentum

I have only been in India for a little less than 72 hours, but I have coined a new term to help describe my observations:

Indimentum /ˈindēmentəm/:
noun
From “India” & “momentum” meaning the force exerted by 1.2 billion people to accomplish tasks despite extreme difficulties.

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Next Stop: Delhi

Next stop: Delhi! I had a great flight to Frankfurt and met an interesting engineer for Mercedes. We had a great conversation, I got a little sleep, and had excellent service on Lufthansa. Can’t wait to meet my wife half way around the world!

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Next Stop: Frankfurt

Next stop: 5039 miles to Frankfurt! #HHTeacherTreks

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The Adventure Begins!

I am so appreciative of @HiltonHonors, @iieglobal, my wonderful family & friends who have made this #HHTeacherTreks possible!

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Talk to Me About World Travel

 An historical map of the world by Ortelius, 1570 A.D.


An historical map of the world by Ortelius, 1570 A.D.

A wise man once said only a fool doesn’t know what he doesn’t know. I’m no fool. Traveling to India this summer on a Hilton HHonors Teacher Trek travel grant will be a completely new experience for me. There is much I do not know about world travel today.  I would welcome need the advice of savvy world travelers out there willing to share their experiences.

Nothing is too small or mundane. Got a tip? A suggestion? A funny or scary story?  I would love to hear from you! If you would like to share something with me directly, submit the form below. If the prompt inspires you to post, then link back to me here and use the  tag, “Talk to me about World Travel”  so I can find your post and share with others.

Thank you in advance for the benefit of sharing your experiences!

(Email address not required unless you want me to be able to respond to you; I will never share it.)

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