Sorry! I just realized this didn’t actually post on Thursday. I’ll add more later!
After spending two days in India there are a few things I’ve picked up on and want to share with you. I have so many stories and things to tell everyone, but not enough time yet!!!
- IF they give you a utensil for eating, it’s a spoon. Nothing else.
- Everything here is deliciously spicy, breakfast and pasta included. But, I haven’t had to use my antacids yet.
- They celebrate human life more than any culture I’ve ever seen, but safety is not intuitive for them. For example, kids don’t sit in car seats and are often on the front of motorcycles. Women don’t have to wear helmets on motorcycles, only men. If you’re sitting in the backseat of a car you won’t be able to find the seat belt because they don’t use them. You don’t need an open space to light off fireworks and there’s no distance away you need to stand after they’re lit.
- Leggings ARE pants here. And are traditional attire along with tunics. It’s so comfortable.
- Everyone gets gifts and money at weddings, not just the bride and groom. I might crash more Indian weddings.
- It’s not socially acceptable for women to show their legs, only their mid-drifts.
- They believe the darker your henna gets the more your finance or husband loves you. Apparently my KISA is obsessed with me as it got super dark immediately.
- The rumors about them not using toilet paper here is accurate, even in the homes. I’m only left to assume the stereotype of what they wipe with.
- Men here are incredible dancers and love to dance. At the wedding festivities there have been about a 10:1 ratio of men to women dancing.
- All religions intermingle.
- They don’t believe in cruelty of animals or really that they should be domesticated, so it’s normal to see cows, dogs, monkeys, etc. everywhere roaming the streets.
- Arranged marriages are quite common and typically over half of all marriages are arranged. Sometimes they allow a courting time before the marriage so that they’re not an absolute stranger. And even if it’s a “love marriage” you never live together before the wedding.
- The elderly people here are the happiest people I’ve ever met. They all smile with their eyes as well as their mouths and are full of love. It leads me to believe they’ve led very fulfilled lives.
- Working for the government is THE place to work. If you work for the government you get special housing included (and they all live in the same community), a car, and your kids go to special government schools.
- Many people here are vegetarians and it took me until someone pointed out to me that there wasn’t any meat in the food. The food’s so good it would be easy to be a vegetarian here.
- At election time it’s normal for people to ride around on bikes pulling big stereos that are playing out “advertisements” for their politician. And it’s very loud to make sure everyone in the houses can hear it.
- They speak H-Henglish. That slang in most countries mean the people don’t know or understand English. In India it’s the opposite – most of their classes are in English so they’re very fluent. What I mean by H-Henglish is that they speak a Hybrid Hindi English. I can get the jist of most conversations because they’ll randomly use English word or expressions, specifically numbers, left, right, straight, U-turn, stroller, OK, thanks (which is interesting that they use thanks instead of cheers since they were a British colony).
- GPS isn’t common in India and men are ok with asking for directions. In fact, they do a lot. People commonly don’t know street names (evidentially it wasn’t really until Google Maps that many had proper names), so when trying to get somewhere unfamiliar you may need to ask for directions a few times. And, since there are so many people in India at all times of the day and night, you always have people to ask. Plus they’re so courteous and never make it seem like you’re bothering them.
- India could possibly take over the world in a decade if they get a better organized government. The reason I say this is that there’s a big gap between the lower class and a middle class. Just to give you an example, it’s common for people in the middle class to have drivers or house-keepers from the lower class because they work so cheaply. There are 1.2 billion people in India and the middle class is very well educated. If the government put more money towards the lower class to allow and ensure for schooling, they would be more qualified for jobs to remove that gap in class. And, having 1.2 billion educated people in your country, with people who are very open to getting jobs overseas, they could be unstoppable.