Thursday, January 12, 2012

Nearing the End

I can't believe we only have a few more days left in India.  We are having such a wonderful time, and our bond has grown steadily with our new Indian friends.  It will be hard to say goodbye to them.  Instead, I believe I will say "phir milengay" - we'll see each other again.

Wednesday we had guest speakers in the morning.  Prof. pamela Singla discussed gender issues in India.  We had a very spirited discussion that could have lasted until afternoon.  What a very interesting subject to discuss - especially to those of us from the U.S. that have always had the security and comfort of being valued the same no matter what our gender.  She was followed by a discussion by Dr. Sadhna Shanker who talked about India's growing soft power and what influences are seen throughout the world from India.

In the afternoon we visited Gandhi Smriti - the place where Gandhi lived for the last days of his life and was eventually assassinated.  It was a very moving place to visit, and the interactive museum was very interesting.

We then left for more shopping at Connaught Place and Janpath Street.  What an experience!  If you weren't bargaining with someone in a store, you were approached by "hawkers" in the street.  There was definitely not a lack of opportunities to purchase souvenirs!

We ended the evening with dinner at a restaurant that serves southern Indian food.  That was a real treat!  We started out with appetizers that were delicious, but when our meal arrived we couldn't believe it.  It was huge!  We had dosa, which is like krumkake but it's not sweet.  I'm told it is cooked in geet (what is left after cooking down butter).  You break pieces off and dip it in one of several dipping sauces that were available.  I don't think anybody at the table finished their whole plate.

Again, we had a wonderful day filled with new adventures, and all the while being very cordially escorted and assisted by our Indian buddies.  It is such a gift to have met these wonderful people who are truly concerned that our visit to India is everything we had hoped plus more.  If anybody asks me what my favorite part of India is, I would definitely have to tell them it's the wonderful people.

Namaste-

Heidi

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