Day five of our six week journey through India starting in the south and heading up to the north. It has already been packed full of all sorts of interesting and wonderful experiences shared with our group of 21 students. Our trip started with a delayed flight resulting in our third flight being missed, so we ended up spending our first night in India in Delhi airport. When we finally arrived in Chennai in the south of India after an early morning flight our first priority was showers which have never felt so good after 40 hours of travel! We then carried on our journey further south to Pondicherry, this time by bus instead of plane. There was so much to take in on the 5 hour trip, from the cows roaming on the side of the road to the beautifully dressed women in every colour you could possibly imagine.
Since arriving in Pondicherry and now having spent one week in India, I have been surprised by this country in so many ways. It’s fascinating how so easily we can have expectations about countries which are so different from the actual reality. We are so easily swayed by the media and those around us and I love how much my perception of India has changed in just the short amount of time I have been here. India so far has been filled with beautiful ever changing landscapes and I have loved the amount of areas of peacefulness tucked away from the bustling cities. The willingness from locals to share their thoughts and experiences with you and allow us into their lives has also been incredibly moving.
One of my favourite moments so far has been walking through the flower markets after our early morning walk to the beach to watch the sunrise. Walking through the markets was one of my favourite things to do when travelling around South America so it brought me straight back to the never ending markets of El Alto that I used to spend hours wandering through. I can’t wait for the next few weeks for my knowledge of India to grow further as we continue our journey north.