I’ve been in India for over one month now. So far most of my blog posts have been a documentation of what I’ve been doing, but the past few weeks I’ve been in class, doing assignments, and writing a final essay for our first course—so not much to document. So I’ve decided to write a more personal blog post about what’s going on with me.
Yesterday, we wrapped up our first class: Identity, Resistance, and Liberation. We had classes on disability, Dalit Resistance, India’s Women’s Movement, Islam, the LGBTI movement, among other things.
The classes are so much different than what I’m used to. No tests—no memorization. Class material is most often presented by outside experts. I’m not drowning in course work, but instead I’m grappling with issues like child labor, poverty, and the oppression of women.
I’ve had a lot of good days, but also a few bad days. Last week was hard for me. There was a lot going on with assignment deadlines, the course essay looming, and a lice outbreak. Feeling stressed left me homesick as well. I was able to Skype my mom for the first time since leaving, which was helpful in lifting my spirits.
One of the things I’m struggling with is balancing my time between being mentally present in India and keeping in touch with people back home. It’s not so much sending emails to my family and friends that I regret, but the time I spend on Facebook scrolling through my news feed, reading status about people who I rarely talk to.
I’ve really missed playing in band and orchestra. I listen to the GWO (Gustavus Wind Orchestra) tour music for Europe quite a bit. I’m hoping that listening to it will make up for not practicing for four months (Ha). However, it is nice to take a break from music. I think it’s a good sign that I miss it.
Time is flying—I can’t believe that I only have 2.5 months left here.
I’m looking forward to seeing what the rest of the semester has in store for me.
Sunday we head to Wayanad, Kerala, which will mark the beginning of our second class: Globalization and the Ethics of Development.
Expect a long blog post sometime next weekend.