today marks my one month until i fly home, so i thought i would share all the things i will miss about india. while i am beyond excited about heading back state-side, i am so thankful for the friends i have made here and [most of] the experiences i have had. i have been lucky enough to meet some amazing people and see some wonderful sights, and i will miss all of them immensely. below are the things i will miss the most.
the people. i have made some wonderful friends in the 10 years i have been going back-and-forth between india and the states, and they continue to energize and inspire me. i will miss sunday lunches in chamarajpet, farewell pub crawls, and evenings spent on terraces, and i will miss all of my partners-in-crime.
the variety of delicious food. india is a food-lover’s paradise, and i have taken full advantage during my time here. from masala dosa to street food to momos and back, there is no limit to the amazing food available at every turn. you can get as delicious a meal for rs 30 as you can for rs 300, and i will miss being able to stuff myself silly with sev puri and gobi manchurian and mutton biryani.
the festivals. indians need very little reason to celebrate, which means there is a different festival practically every month. streets will be decorated for various events, and amazing food will be prepared. new clothes will be bought, and houses will be cleaned from top to bottom in preparation for feasts and visits from family members and friends. and my personal favourite thing about festival days: no traffic!
the colours. there is no denying india is a country of beautiful colours, and i will definitely miss the bright buildings and the flower markets and the gorgeous sarees. indians don’t know the meaning of subtlety, and it is evident everywhere you turn.
the entertainment. life in india is always full of surprises and laughs, and there is always something happening regardless of day or night. whether it’s the ladies who can’t keep their balance on the bus or shopkeepers who are constantly trying to sell you their wares, there is a little bit of joy in every outing.
the history. for a history nerd such as myself, india holds many wonders. there are the monuments in north india from the days of the mughal empire. there are the ruins of the vijayanagar dynasty in hampi. there are the remnants of french rule in pondicherry. every inch of this country is steeped in history, and i have learned so much living here.
the hospitality. i don’t know if i have ever been welcomed as wholeheartedly anywhere as i have been in india. i always say that indian hospitality is like southern hospitality on crack, and i still stand by that. from the families who have taken me in to the aunty i buy vegetables from, most people in india are generous and genuine, and i am lucky to have had their generosity bestowed upon me time and time again.
the hills. there is magic in the hills of india, whether it be the coffee estates of coorg, the tea plantations of munnar, or the foothills of the himalayas. i have been fortunate enough to spend a lot of time exploring india’s hills and mountains, and they will always hold a piece of my heart.
it is crazy to think that i will be leaving all of this behind in a month. this is the first time i am leaving india without a return plan, and while i am excited to see what the next few years hold for me, i know i am leaving a little part of myself behind. through all the ups and downs, life in india has taught me a lot, and i will forever be grateful for the people i’ve met and the lessons i’ve learned.
and i’ll be back. one day, i’ll be back.