has travelled Asia!!


India, incredible India. Even already having spent two month there (two years ago) India shocked me again. Already in the plane the Indian passengers were quite noticeable: My neighbor used his vomit bag to constantly spit out. Just after the landing we were asked to stay sited, but the stewardesses had to literally push back 90% of the passengers… At the Kolkata airport I managed to find a public bus but I didn’t really know were I was going… Entering the city I got reminded how crowded, loud, poor and dirty India is, indeed incredible. Also it took me several hours to cash a traveller’s cheque: handy? My foot! Only thereafter I found the touristy area, where all the money exchangers are… Also my CS-host didn’t response to my messages and calls any more… but in exchange I found a dorm for only 80 Rupees (1.30 Euro) a night (: And on the roof loads of travellers are gathering, playing Carrom (kind of Indian billiard), chatting, drinking, smoking and we even have a Slack line!

The poverty is ineffable, so many beggars and homeless… It’s normal here to sleep on the street… Many shopkeeper just sleep in front of their ‘shops’ (consisting of only half a square meter). While till India I gave to any beggar, here it is hardly possible… And many of them are very pushy, some even aggressive. It’s very difficult to still give if you are yelled and tugged at! And then the mothers with babies and the young children. To the latter I don’t give.

On the other hand I still love India! I met some very helpful and nice people, which I partly even consider friends by now. Also I met with another CS who contacted and then showed me around a little bit, otherwise I would have totally missed a festival going on yesterday! And then I love Indian foot, it’s just the best, definitely my favorite!!

Today I got up at 5:30 am to volunteer in the Mother (Teresa) House. I ended up in Prem Dam were the sisters take care of handicapped persons of all kind. Having made some experience in that field in Germany and France it was quite interesting to see how it works here. But also very intense and harrowing. It’s even more incredible under what circumstances those people are living (and suffering). Still I can only recommend volunteering here! You don’t need to apply, just come by and help! As long as you want and can. Another great project is the Youth With a Mission, where you even live with your colleagues and occasional some of the street children. It’s a shame my meditation is starting tomorrow, I would love to go to Prem Dam again! It’s a good reason to come back to Kolkata though.

Tomorrow I will start my meditation, ten days of silence – also here. I’m totally excited by now and really looking forward to it!

PS: Merry Xmas everyone!! And eat loads of cookies for me (;
And a happy new Year!

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