#006 – Preparing India.

April 27, 2011

There are things you can prepare yourself for and there things you won’t be able to prepare for. How much you will read, how many photographs you will see, how many stories you’ve been told. Sometimes none of those things will show you the truth.

Since Vietnam I’m reading the book ‘Shantaram’ as an preparation for India and after all those months of reading the stories of Lin, I thought I was prepared. A few days ago I met this amazing country for the first time and from the moment I stepped outside the airport I knew: you cannot know a country as India by reading a book. Although we’ve been to countries like Mongolia, China and even Iran, India is like every place I ever been, every smell I ever smelt, every saturated color I ever seen, every taste I ever tasted and every pressure I ever managed to suppress, times ten. And still, if you read this and never been to India you won’t be able to know how it really is.

We walked the streets in Kolkata finding ourselves exhausted by the things we saw. For two days it sucked the energy out of our bodies, out of our minds. The hot and humid weather wasn’t helping either. But we managed to get through. We lived it and we loved it, for now. We left the country in a hurry to be on time in Nepal to hook up with my brother. For those two days we got an sneak preview. Just a peak to make us want more, to get back there.

First, Nepal. A smaller, slightly quieter country. A good place to get to know the Hindu culture and to get into the habits. Maybe it will be a preparation, or maybe just some great experience.

– I think I know what India is all about, I think..


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