India is a shining example of everything lacking in western cultures.
I never felt the desire to even think about it before. My idea of a holiday abroad was somewhere with hot showers and cute cafes. Not spotting Rhinos or knowing the sad reality that even Peacocks live a sexist, unequal life. ( Google Pea-hens, they are less beautiful, less known and less male than female.
I learned since being there, the value and importance of a random cow in the street.
For this cow and all of it’s thousands of friends teach Indian societies at large the lesson of patience. Something they must practise everyday. Ironically, these cows are then respected to the point of not being butchered and even frequently fed as a form of good karma. It’s beautifully twisted I know, but the best things in life usually are.
India also is home to frequent puppy sightings whenever you ventured onto the streets.
They never failed to improve a tired bus day, via their adorable reminder of life’s glorious serendipity.
The spices which slide onto unsuspecting tongues, slap the monotony of eating food to satisfy comfort or survival. In Russia, drinks get you drunk. In Italy, food makes you wish you had a second or third stomach. Here, food wakes you up.
Perhaps it’s the 300,000 + gods that bring forth their humbleness, an eagerness to be grateful. Perhaps, it’s the bleak surroundings of overpopulated and undeveloped cities. I haven’t the faintest clue.
However, I do believe everyone’s souls needs India and or Nepal, at least once in their lives. And not because we are all waiting on the day we sip our first glass of dissatisfaction in our lives, cough cough ~ Elizabeth Gilbert’s ‘Eat Pray Love’.
No, but because we need to feed our souls something other than quarterly bills, endless texts, coffee shop chit-chats, walks through our favourite parks, fitness classes or computer screens.
I also think that the need for the place comes from somewhere you never knew existed. I know this is true, as I have never left a holiday feeling so full, bloated with vegetable samosas and possibilities.
Opportunities I could have uncovered if I looked hard enough. If I listened and consequentially trusted myself more.
India left me vision forever impaired. And I can’t not help but not feel forever thankful.