- India Experience
So when I left for this journey I was given best wishes about my upcoming holiday. Firstly I will admit being in India is the furthest thing from being on holiday. The best way to describe being in India is an adventure, eye opening cultural experience and extremely educational not just about the history and the amazing culture that has been created over the past hundreds and thousands of years but the way the current world is and the standard of living in the poorer countries.
Something interesting I have learnt is that people from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka are sneaking into India and fighting to make India their home. I find this staggering and it makes me wonder what the conditions are like back in those countries I am told it is far far worse than what I have experienced in the past week in India.
India is the most eye opening place in the world. The way of life over here is so far away from my life in Launceston Tasmania.
(1) The Rubbish all over the land
There is literally rubbish over every square inch of land in India. This includes papers, food wrappers, concrete and anything that you could imagine it is absolute filth and really hard to imagine it ever getting cleaned up.
(2) The chaos on the streets
The streets everywhere from the middle of a big city to the middle of a small village the traffic and chaos in the streets are madness. There is no such thing as giving way and it is every man for himself to get from A to B. But somehow there are minimal accidents and everyone just pushes through and gets on with it. Until you actually take a journey through the streets in a bus or a tuk tuk you will never understand how crazy it is. There are cows which just wander the streets looking for food scraps as there just isn’t any feed in the paddocks, so this is something else you have to dodge when driving in India, pretty crazy really.
(3) The work ethic and small pay
The people over here work huge hours, like 16 hours per day. They do the most horrible jobs and it’s hard to imagine to doing what they do. An unskilled worker will earn about 500 rupees (10 dollars) per day and skilled workers will earn about 1000 rupees (20 dollars) per day.
In India they are cricket mad. Everywhere I go as a tourist there are Indian men intrigued that I come from Australia and always mention cricket players names the most popular is Rickey Ponting and Brett Lee. I had a chance to watch a local cricket game in a small village I stayed in. I met a young man at a school called Kapil who took me to the game, he said it was being played at the Stadium. We walked for about 15 minutes to one side of the village. There were 22 keen young men in thongs desperately playing the game as if it was like there life depended on it. The stadium was built in a large square area with a 2.0m high brick wall surrounding the perimeter. The pitch was half sand and half concrete slab, they batted from just the one end for this reason. The outfield was a really soft sand similar to the dry part of a beach. The ball would usually thud into the sand and stay where it landed. The stumps were a mix of timber sticks, bricks and one real cricket stump. The guys batting used no protective equipment and had to share the bat. I arrived with a team chasing 89 to win off 12 overs. They were doing it easy at 1/35 off about 5 overs and then they started to lose wickets. The captain of the side was batting up the other end whilst the wickets were falling and he was disgusted by it all and gave every player some harsh feedback when they lost there wicket. The team ended up about 8 runs short. I was very impressed by some of the hitting of the players and the fielding was really really good, a few run outs were created simply by the high skill level in the field.
Kapil and I then walked back to my hotel as the sun was nearly down and pitch black was very near. Kapil asked for some Bon Bon, I presumed it was a lolly but when I had a look at the shop it ended up being a packet of dried noodles. I bought him 5 packets and he was a happy young man and said he would take them back to his family.
In summary I have found it hard to driver past all these poor people in the air conditioned bus with our $1000.00 camera and I phones taking photos of donkeys carrying half a ton of bricks on their backs, 60 year old men unloading a full ten yard truck of gravel all by hand or cows sleeping in the middle of a busy road as I presume they just have no energy to move and a literally starving to death. The young men and women who are digging giant holes in the streets for sewage and future infrastructure. I certainly will attempt to take some type of action myself to assist the poor people in the world as its not nice to see at all.
I have one final day here in India, I have no doubt in my mind that I will see some more crazy things and then I am onto Dubai for 5 days which will mean I am going from one of the poorer countries in the world to one of the richest.