Photo of the Week
Photo Title


WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 17146
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-05-07 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-05-07 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 
Hi everyone! Here is an updated itinerary for the Princeton Bridge Year India program.
Just wanted to share an updated Ladakh itinerary and a photo of some of your favorite smiling faces!
May 8th: Day trip to Alchi
May 9th: Leh - preparations for Khespang Retreat. 
May 10th: Drive to Khespang in the morning. Afternoon intro to Buddhism and meditation.
May 11th - 13th: Khespang Retreat
May14th: Leh - Trek Preparations
May15th: Drive to trek start in the morning.
May 20th: Drive back to Leh
May 21st: Leh. Visit the oracle
May 22nd - 26th: Nubra Transference Workshops
May 27th: Drive back to Leh
May 28th: Final Day in Leh
May 29th: Fly to Delhi.
May 30th: Delhi
May 31st: Fly home in the evening!
Christina Rivera Cogswell Princeton Bridge Year Program Director
[post_title] => Photo and Updated Itinerary: Princeton Bridge Year [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => photo-and-updated-itinerary [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-05-07 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-05-07 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=17146 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 269 [name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [slug] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 269 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 263 [count] => 33 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 3.10012 [cat_ID] => 269 [category_count] => 33 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [category_nicename] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [category_parent] => 263 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/princeton-bridge-year/bridge-year-india-fall-2012/ ) ) [category_links] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 )

Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

View post

Photo and Updated Itinerary: Princeton Bridge Year

Christina Rivera Cogswell,Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

Description

Hi everyone! Here is an updated itinerary for the Princeton Bridge Year India program. Just wanted to share an updated Ladakh itinerary and a photo of some of your favorite smiling faces! May 8th: Day trip to Alchi May 9th: Leh – preparations for Khespang Retreat.  May 10th: Drive to Khespang in the morning. Afternoon intro […]

Posted On

05/7/13

Author

Christina Rivera Cogswell

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 17112
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-04-29 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-04-29 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Bittersweet, like an unripe mango.

 

The middle of April is an interesting time for Banaras fruit stands. The glowing, juicy oranges have shriveled and darkened. The once radiant, yellow bananas have turned sludge green and now have peels reminiscent of rubber. But there is a new contender. The mango. However, at this point, all the best tropical fruits, native to this neck of the Gangetic plains, are in a strange intermediate stage where no particular fruit shines. The mango is on the upswing, but at this moment, the ideally golden, mouthwatering color is dotted with patches of green. It is unripe. Tasty, but sour. Bittersweet.

 

These days, as I get ready to leave Banaras, my life feels like an unripe mango. Grab the fruit. Take out your knife. Slice it down the sides, and dig in. Here is a sweet, yellow chunk: I am getting closer to seeing my family and friends back in America.  I think of escaping the heat, which has recently climbed to, and remained at, around 105 degrees Fahrenheit, and it feels like I have bit into the juiciest part of the fruit. I picture Ladakh – the lofty, snowy peaks; the vast, breathtakingly barren moonscape; the pure air; the soon-to come yoga sessions on the shores of a sky blue lake, renowned as one of the highest-altitude-lakes in the world – and I have hit the fruity jackpot.

 

But I remember what day it is, and how little time is actually left, and the mango starts to turn greener. I think of walking down the ghaats for the last time; of taking a final circuit through the lush local university; of bestowing my trusty bike, which has braved the dusty, rough Banaras roads with me for the past seven months, upon someone else. And then I think of the human connections I have made, and the green gets even more intense. Are yaar! This mango really needed to stay on the tree for longer.

 

This community has been so welcoming, generous, and warm. Do you know what the strongest thing in India is? Yeah, I am sure the national animal, the tiger, dukes pretty well. And yes, Ganga-ji’s bacteria are also pretty darn vicious and scrappy. But neither is the strongest. It is the India family structure.

 

It is clear in the language. It shows what the priority is here. According to a book I read recently, Dreaming in Hindi, there are words in English, like “privacy,” which apparently do not translate in any comparable way to any of the subcontinent’s many tongues. Expecting someone to learn the Hindi familial terms by heart would, in my opinion, rivals giving someone who is learning to speak English, a dictionary and commanding them to memorize all the words that begin with the letter “A”.  In Hindi, there is a specific word for your maternal grandmother. Or your spouse’s brother. Or your mother’s sister’s son.  I have gathered that “in-laws,” or “cousin,” is just not sufficient. That would not be specific enough. Not personal enough.

 

The family I have become part of transcends my host family. Sure, I have Mata-ji, Bao-ji, Shiv, Anandi, and Amma-ji, who now responds emphatically to my “High-five kuriye!”s, who are all wonderful in different ways. But the community I feel part of here extends from the door of my Assi ghaat abode to Virendra-ji’s classroom and Salman-ji’s office. To my own classroom at the village school, and to the homes into which I have been invited by my kind students. To Cozy Corner, run by Kaashi, who knows what kind of dosa I want as soon as I walk in. To the Betawar teacher’s office, where Abha ma’am, Vinay sir, Harshita ma’am and all the other great teachers at Nirman chat.

 

The community that I am leaving behind also includes the people I know on a less personal level. They are faces I see every day that help to give Banaras its inimitable flavor. Ashok, the man with his pet monkey, Julie, who lives on Assi ghat. The didi at Nirman whom I do not know so well by name, but rather by her wide, toothless smile and singsongy “Namaste, bhiya!” The numerous buffalo herders, who unceasingly stop traffic, with their blundering, heavy-footed, friendly behemoths.   My Banarasi family, that I know will be nearly impossible to leave behind, consists of all different characters: from the people I love as part of my mental portrait of Banaras, to the people – my host family and students – that I have come to actually love.

 

When I think of the immediate future, of boarding my last sleeper train of Bridge Year, headed from Banaras to New Delhi, my mango is darn bitter. I might just go complain to the fruit walla on the corner of Lanka. But when I think farther into the future, of coming back and visiting, my mango’s golden. The truth is that I cannot not come back. Banaras is part of me now.

Whenever I eat a delicious, ripe mango, my hands end up drenched in sticky juice. But, especially when a sink is not readily available, the stickiness is an ephemeral memento of how good the mango was. At the moment, my skin is coated in one hundred layers of dust from the Banaras streets. My nails are still dyed purple from Holi. And my speech and mannerisms are stained with the signature Indian headbob (does it mean yesnomaybe, or all three?!), and staccato, reflexive “Haan!”s and “Theek hai!”s. These marks and habits will fade with time, but that does not mean that Banaras and its impression on me will fade along with them. Banaras’ impression will be everlasting.

 

I know that I will remember Banaras and all of its awe-inspiring places, and most importantly, all the people I have met, who I know have impacted me, and whom I have hopefully impacted in some way. And whom I have come to love. This is how I will leave the mango juice on my hands.

Why would I ever want to wash myself of Banaras?

[post_title] => Like an unripe mango. [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => like-an-unripe-mango [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-04-29 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-04-29 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=17112 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 269 [name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [slug] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 269 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 263 [count] => 33 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 3.10012 [cat_ID] => 269 [category_count] => 33 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [category_nicename] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [category_parent] => 263 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/princeton-bridge-year/bridge-year-india-fall-2012/ ) ) [category_links] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 )

Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

View post

Like an unripe mango.

Nicholas Sexton,Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

Description

Bittersweet, like an unripe mango.   The middle of April is an interesting time for Banaras fruit stands. The glowing, juicy oranges have shriveled and darkened. The once radiant, yellow bananas have turned sludge green and now have peels reminiscent of rubber. But there is a new contender. The mango. However, at this point, all […]

Posted On

04/29/13

Author

Nicholas Sexton

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 17113
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-04-29 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-04-29 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 
(this yakyak is a repost of my Princeton Group Update. The original can be found on the Bridge Year website)
 
“Nice to meet you.” My students eagerly shake my hands, the interaction
interrupted by shouts of “mat jaeeye!” “kyon ja rehe hai?” “ham apki yad aenge!”
 
Don’t go. Why are are you going? We’ll miss you. I try to manage to carry
Ambrish at the same time as Karthik and Gautam climb up my other side while Rhimjhim hands me cards from the class, and Abhishek and Suraj fight for my one semi-free hand, saying “Nice to meet you.”
 
Before I even knew it, my last working day in Banaras arrived and
everything became a whirlwind. I had thought I had found closure for myself, that I would be able to leave sad, but content, ready to close one chapter and move onto the next, but as I watch my kids completely ignore their teacher (who I imagine must be slightly irked that I’m interrupting her class) and rush to say farewell, I realize that there’s no closing this chapter of my life. I realize it so fast that I’m almost scared: I must come back.
 
It’s a little crazy, thinking back to the first time I met these kids. Back
when they looked at me as an intruder on their class. They didn’t respond to me in class, they would only very hesitatingly stand up to answer questions. Out on the streets, I was just like any other stranger. Now, even though I haven’t been in their classroom as a teacher for a few months now, I hear “Hariom Allen sir!” while I’m biking down the road. Happy waves to me from detention. Suraj stops by after school to see how I’m doing. Shivam and Gautam drag me upstairs to play tag with them. Although in many ways, the office work I did was based around producing results, getting grant applications done, making newsletters, typing letters and mailing receipts, the greatest thing that I ever made at Little Stars was the special relationship I have with Class 2, the rowdiest, naughtiest (as they would say), but absolutely best Little Stars class.
 
“Sir, sir!” I put Ambrish back down as I take a few more cards. “Cub vapas
aenge? August?” When will you come back? August? I pause. Obviously I won’t be back in August. In August I will likely be sitting in front of my computer snacking on Chinese food listening to music, or sitting in front of my piano practicing scales, and the thought suddenly scares me. When will I be back? Will my students still be here when I come back? What if I never see them again? My students look at me expecting an answer.
 
“Humko pata nahin. Do sal ke bad?” I don’t know. Maybe two years later?
 
They look at me with dissatisfaction, and I am quickly peppered with
requests to come back earlier. And that’s when I realize that even if my students aren’t here, even if this is really the last time that I see them, we’ll still all have had a special year. Even if they end up migrating to other parts of India, as some of them inevitably will, and I never see them again, we will both always have the memories of this year, of Allen speaking splotchy Hindi trying to explain fractions and multiplication, of Happy and Shivam jumping across tables, and of Abhishek’s slightly arrogant gait. Those memories will stay, and all the changes, the influences, the significance of meeting this year will stay with us for years to come. Ultimately, I realize, we can’t guarantee that we’ll see each other again, and we can’t guarantee that we won’t forget each other as the years go on, but we’ll always have met, and we’ll always carry a trace of our meeting with us.
 
We’ll always have something from this experience with us, however small,
however large. Really, it was great to meet them. I smile as Suraj again grabs my hand.
 
“Nice to meet you sir.”
“Nice to meet you too Suraj.”
[post_title] => Nice to Meet You [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => nice-to-meet-you-3 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-04-29 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-04-29 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=17113 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 269 [name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [slug] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 269 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 263 [count] => 33 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 3.10012 [cat_ID] => 269 [category_count] => 33 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [category_nicename] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [category_parent] => 263 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/princeton-bridge-year/bridge-year-india-fall-2012/ ) ) [category_links] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 )

Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

View post

Nice to Meet You

Allen Fang,Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

Description

(this yakyak is a repost of my Princeton Group Update. The original can be found on the Bridge Year website)   “Nice to meet you.” My students eagerly shake my hands, the interaction interrupted by shouts of “mat jaeeye!” “kyon ja rehe hai?” “ham apki yad aenge!”   Don’t go. Why are are you going? […]

Posted On

04/29/13

Author

Allen Fang

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 17114
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-04-29 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-04-29 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

There’s a new Starbucks in Delhi. It’s in Connaught Place, and I’m sitting here sipping my Tall, Non-Fat, Chai Tea Latte that’s roughly 27 times more expensive than Friends Tea Stall’s Milk Chai in Varanasi.

 

I’ve left Varanasi, and the only thing on my physical body that reminds me of my seven-month stay are the earthy-red swirls of mehndi on the palms of my hands. My host-sister Madhu applied the henna the night before I left, as the bells of late-night temple goers reverberated through the hot, April air. We sat on the family bed—mom already asleep in her sari, and a moisturizing mixture of yogurt, holy basil oil, and powdered henna solidifying in my hair. Madhu kept asking me what each of her designs brought to mind.

My answers: Mountains, a strawberry, a quail, Giant Kelp, Two slices of Costco pizza. Madhu laughed. Her answers: Teeth, a feather, a mermaid, an hour glass.

 

It’s funny what slips to the front of our minds. Our minds are filled with associations, and are constantly looking to draw lines between the figures in front of our eyes and the millions of observations we’ve made in the past. What I find these days, with the Varanasi portion of our program behind us, is that I have a lot more to draw on than just the 18-year–old palms of my hands.

 

The Chai Latte in front of me reminds me of my middle-school notion that Starbucks was the pinnacle of American café culture. It’s subtle gingery flavors remind me of Christmastime shopping trips with my mother. The slightly sweet foam on the rim of the cup brings me back to long, dramatized hours staring at a screen trying to turn chicken-scratch into something compelling for this English class, or that college application. In this Chai I taste interviews, movie dates, and the crisp mornings of meticulously scheduled Saturdays.

 

But as we close up Bridge Year, chai stirs up more in me than ever before. A couple of 8-ounce glasses of chai is what an undernourished, below-poverty-line, Varanasi schoolchild typically takes for breakfast, along with a couple of stale biscuits. The same gingery flavor also reminds me of Bal Ashram’s morning and afternoon seva meetings, in which everyone would gather and plan the selfless service of the day over laughter and free-flowing refreshment. I’ve seen cups of tea passed between housewives and dishwashers, passengers and drivers, and ghat-strolling friends. I’ve seen chai fuel end-of-life pilgrimages, soothe weary souls, and serve as the drink that unites a nation.

 

I can simply draw more lines. And the lines begin to form pictures that I couldn’t have imagined eight months ago.

 

Leaving Varanasi—the physical acts of packing up my bangles, cleaning my squat-toilet, and boarding the Shiv-Ganga Express to Delhi—is a reminder of all the new mental associations that Varanasi has left me. It’s not that I see the world in a whole new light, but rather that the scope of my associations is broader than ever before.

 

[post_title] => Leaving Benaras [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => leaving-benaras [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-04-29 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-04-29 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=17114 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 269 [name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [slug] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 269 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 263 [count] => 33 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 3.10012 [cat_ID] => 269 [category_count] => 33 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [category_nicename] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [category_parent] => 263 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/princeton-bridge-year/bridge-year-india-fall-2012/ ) ) [category_links] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 )

Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

View post

Leaving Benaras

Mackenzie Dooner,Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

Description

There’s a new Starbucks in Delhi. It’s in Connaught Place, and I’m sitting here sipping my Tall, Non-Fat, Chai Tea Latte that’s roughly 27 times more expensive than Friends Tea Stall’s Milk Chai in Varanasi.   I’ve left Varanasi, and the only thing on my physical body that reminds me of my seven-month stay are […]

Posted On

04/29/13

Author

Mackenzie Dooner

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 17042
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-04-16 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-04-16 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

BYP-India 2013 Ladakh *Itinerary

 (*always subject to change!)

 

April 22nd: Arrive Leh 7:40am, Accommodations: Leh Meadows. Breakfast - acclimate!

 

April 23rd:  (Leh City) Begin Transference Workshops (Debriefing Service & Documentation Activities)

 

April 24th: (Leh City) Visit Neighboring Sites (Thiksey Monastery & Leh Palace) & Development Workshops

 

April 25th: (Leh City) Kristin Brudevold (Co-Leader) Joins the Group! Welcome ritual & Visit to famous local Oracle.

 

April 26th: (Leh City) Small hike in Leh City. Tranference Workshops (Life/Concept Mapping). Movie about the Satya (nuns).

 

April 27th: (Druk Padma Kharpo Nunnery) Drive 45 mins; Meet the nuns/see the school
 

4/28-5/6: (Druk Padma Kharpo Nunnery) Service Project @ Nunnery: Build toilet block (and teach English classes)

 

May 7th: Drive (1.5h) to Khaspang, Monastery; Meet Gen Tashi-la.

 

5/1-5/13: "Inward Darshan" Retreat (Reflection & Transference): Buddhist Teachings, Meditation Instruction, Student Solo Projects, Yoga, Transference Workshops,  Silence 

 

May 14th: (Leh) Drive back to Leh, Accommodations:  Leh Meadows

 

May 15th: (Pangong) Day Bus to Pangong Lake

 

May 16th: (Pangong Lake)  Day Treks, Yoga, Solo Projects & Service (English Class with Nomad Kids)

 

May 19th: (Leh) Day bus back to Leh

 

 

May 20th:  (Leh City) Preparation and Briefings for Trek

 

May 21st: Depart for Trek (4-5 hours walking), Workshops on Trek

 

5/22-5/27:  Trekking from Hemis to Stok Villages

 

May 28th: (Leh) Return to Leh. Trek debrief and relaxation. 

 

May 29th: Fly back to Delhi (Dep: 11:10 from Leh, 12:30 Arrive Delhi) Accommodations: Wongdhen House. Transference & Evaluation Documentation & Workshops 

 

 

May 30th: (Delhi)  Day in Delhi, Wrap Up Documentation & Transference Workshops

 

May 31st: (Delhi) Depart for Airport @ 7:30pm

[post_title] => Bridge Year India 2013 Ladakh Itinerary [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => bridge-year-india-2013-ladakh-itinerary [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-04-16 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-04-16 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=17042 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 269 [name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [slug] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 269 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 263 [count] => 33 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 3.10012 [cat_ID] => 269 [category_count] => 33 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [category_nicename] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [category_parent] => 263 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/princeton-bridge-year/bridge-year-india-fall-2012/ ) ) [category_links] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 )

Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

View post

Bridge Year India 2013 Ladakh Itinerary

Debi Goldman,Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

Description

BYP-India 2013 Ladakh *Itinerary  (*always subject to change!)   April 22nd: Arrive Leh 7:40am, Accommodations: Leh Meadows. Breakfast – acclimate!   April 23rd:  (Leh City) Begin Transference Workshops (Debriefing Service & Documentation Activities)   April 24th: (Leh City) Visit Neighboring Sites (Thiksey Monastery & Leh Palace) & Development Workshops   April 25th: (Leh City) Kristin Brudevold (Co-Leader) Joins the Group! Welcome ritual & Visit to famous local Oracle.   April […]

Posted On

04/16/13

Author

Debi Goldman

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16760
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-03-04 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-03-04 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

On March 2nd, we went to go see the Karmapa in Sarnath! The Karmapa is the head of a school of Tibetan Buddhism, and although our audience with him was short, it was an incredibly interesting and enriching experience for all of us (although we didn't have enough time to ask him about Indian Chow Mein). 

[post_title] => Seeing the Karmapa in Sarnath [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => seeing-the-karmapa-in-sarnath [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-03-04 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-03-04 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16760 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 269 [name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [slug] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 269 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 263 [count] => 33 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 3.10012 [cat_ID] => 269 [category_count] => 33 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [category_nicename] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [category_parent] => 263 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/princeton-bridge-year/bridge-year-india-fall-2012/ ) ) [category_links] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 )

Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

View post

Seeing the Karmapa in Sarnath

Allen Fang,Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

Description

On March 2nd, we went to go see the Karmapa in Sarnath! The Karmapa is the head of a school of Tibetan Buddhism, and although our audience with him was short, it was an incredibly interesting and enriching experience for all of us (although we didn’t have enough time to ask him about Indian Chow […]

Posted On

03/4/13

Author

Allen Fang

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16757
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-03-03 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-03-03 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

I’m writing this on Day 192 of Bridge Year, at the beginning of my 7th month in India, and from the patio of my house in Samneghat, Varanasi.  The weather is definitely heating up.  My trademark Banarsi sparkly red woolen vest and camouflage earmuffs rest on the shelves of my dresser, replaced by my ‘Being Human’ (a charity run by Salman Khan, arguably the biggest Bollywood star) T-shirt and Tevas.  The ghats, which quieted down during the foggy, freezing winter, are alive again with life, notably Naga Sadhus.  These Hindu ascetics spend most of their time meditating in the woods but after the especially auspicious occasion of the Maha Kumbh Mela have come to Varanasi to bathe in Gangaji on March 10th, Shivaratri.  Their colorful tents line the pathways from Jain Ghat (just below our Program House) to Manakarnika Ghat (the main burning ghat).  Dreadlocked, orange-robed, and chillum-smoking sadhus alone would have been a sight to see but the ash-smeared, dreadlocked, chillum-smoking, naked sadhus have stolen the show.  Most are happy to have their picture taken—indeed, many hang signs above their tents proclaiming their names and achievements to date—and my camera certainly has been busy.  The sadhus love hearing me speak in Hindi and willingly answer any question of mine.  I can’t say I’ve accepted any of their offers to spend the night in their tent or their chillum yet, though.  Princeton’s rules aside, I want no part in anything that might make me stop bathing or induce me to parade around naked, with rings where no rings should be. 

 

Away from the holy river, I am kept quite busy (“running around, running around,” as my homestay brother would stay) by new responsibilities at my worksite.  I am currently writing and designing an updated prospectus for WLC to distribute to donors about its various incarnations of libraries and projects, writing and designing a brochure with updates and pictures about all of the kids it sponsors, visiting multiple schools to create a database regarding school hours, number of students, gender breakdown, etc, and writing proposals to host ‘WLC Days’ and WLC-sponsored competitions at local schools in an effort to both promote and increase the attendance of their Community Library.  These mornings, in addition to poster making, helping organize the grand event of International Women’s Day (IWD), and generally providing assistance around the library always make me feel like I deserve a special lunch, which inevitably leads me to Kerala Café.  I don’t really have the words to describe the love I have for the combination of Chole Bature and a Cold Coffee with Ice Cream so I will provide an example instead: In the past week, I have visited Kerala and enjoyed this meal 4 separate times.  (My affection for the restaurant does pale in comparison to another Bridge Yearer whose habits are so well-known to the staff, that he routinely comes in, hands them a 100 rupee note, eats his order and leaves without needing to say anything other than a simple hello).  In the afternoon I continue to tutor 5 Class 5 students as well as a boy and a girl from classes 8 and 9, respectively.  The different levels of English keep me on my toes and, I confess, I learn a lot of Hindi from them at the same time.  I no longer go to a Gumti because WLC is in turmoil regarding funding and is weighing which projects might have to be cut.  Perhaps the most dire example of its trouble is the funding for IWD, which has been slashed from last year’s 8 lakh (about $15000) to 3.5 lakh (about $6500).    

After work, I continue to learn the art of Banethi.  Murariji calls it ‘Fire Dancing,’ but that’s not quite accurate.  Rather, it is Fire Spinning, either end of a staff aflame as he whips it around his body in ever more complex patterns.  Allen and I learn slowly, but our repertoire is building and we have even earned a concession from the taciturn Murariji that, with fire, our speed and movement look good.  We are currently working on throwing the staff and different ways to spin it around one’s shoulder, neck, and back.  Yes, I have been burned, but only slightly.  A tuft of singed hair stuck up for several days in defiance of showers and combs before settling down once more. 

 

In other news, I’ve made my own Gulab Jamun, helped make 6 months worth of Pappaudam, made friends with a local kid that loves Fifa and has his own Playstation (perfect!), found themed-alleyways in the old city and Gowdolia, seen countless temples and mosques, found absurdly cheap places to get absurdly good meat, bought yards (excuse me, metres) of nice fabric to turn into Western clothes, enhanced my kurta collection, arranged for free, private tabla lessons from a man who lives across from the Community Library that I’ve befriended, and countless other things.  

Life's great here; I can't believe I get two more months! 

[post_title] => Banaras [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => banaras [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-03-03 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-03-03 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16757 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 269 [name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [slug] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 269 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 263 [count] => 33 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 3.10012 [cat_ID] => 269 [category_count] => 33 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [category_nicename] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [category_parent] => 263 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/princeton-bridge-year/bridge-year-india-fall-2012/ ) ) [category_links] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 )

Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

View post

Banaras

William Gansa,Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

Description

I’m writing this on Day 192 of Bridge Year, at the beginning of my 7th month in India, and from the patio of my house in Samneghat, Varanasi.  The weather is definitely heating up.  My trademark Banarsi sparkly red woolen vest and camouflage earmuffs rest on the shelves of my dresser, replaced by my ‘Being […]

Posted On

03/3/13

Author

William Gansa

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16481
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-01-20 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-01-20 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Upon returning for the first time since December 18 to the Nirman School excitement, anxiety, and eagerness rushed through me. As I walked my bike inside the iron green gates separating the chaos of the street and the confinement of the school, the sound of them creaking open immediately brought back all the memories I've collected here in the last three months of teaching. Harshita ma'am approached. 

"Good morning Harshita ma'am. How are you?" 

"Good morning Tyler Sir, I am fine. This term you will be the class teacher for class six. Aside from Hindi and Sanskrit you will be their only teacher. You will have many more responsibilities." 

What more responsibilities could I have? I thought to myself. She continued. 

"You will have to arrange parent meetings, write progress reports, walk the students to class in the morning, clean the classroom in the afternoon, take attendance sheets, write term exams, order classroom supplies" she paused, having run out of breath. 

Rather than feeling overwhelmed by this exchanged, I felt empowered. These small changes represented something much more significant to me: a greater integration within the community at Nirman, and even more importantly, a sign that I had been doing my job well. 

First starting at Nirman, I'll admit, was a bit overwhelming. Fresh off the train from verdant Mussoorie, I arrived at the campus and within minutes, by the instruction of a busy office manager, found myself teaching algebra to what would eventually become "my" class. Sadhana, Ajeet, Alkesh, Laiba, Dinkar, Imran, Imran Mohammad, Shadiq, Mansi, Neel, Ummehani, Neha. 12 students, 5 girls and 7 boys. With no lesson plans that day, I don't remember exactly what I taught. But the students energy, respect, and curiosity was unforgettable. They came from families of silk weavers, history professors, rickshaw cyclists, merchants, tailors, construction workers, and many other jobs. But every day they come to Nirman as students, as equals. There was a palpable sense that these children were not just classmates, but friends.

Having been on the other side of the desk not four months earlier as a high school senior, I found myself flustered by the role I had been prescribed. I hadn't undergone any training. Despite this, I progressed rapidly as a teacher through structuring my lessons and connecting with my students. The first proved more difficult. My assignment was to teach math, geography, music, and English to the sixth grade class. Math was relatively simple; Nirman provided a useful textbook with a variety of practice problems. Geography was also straightforward, though I had to be creative when teaching the chapter about the motions of the Earth. None of the students were familiar with the concepts of rotation and revolution, and the textbook failed to provide edification. The fact that the Earth is tilted ("Sir what does that word even mean?") on its axis 23.5 degrees proved even more mystifying. The next day I procured a basketball-sized globe from the library and devoted the morning to giving demonstrations involving each of the students. I'm happy to report that they scored very well on that section of their exam. 

English was much more difficult to teach than the previous two subjects. No textbook was provided, and the literature they were reading in class was about 19th century mail-order brides in the American Midwest. They were even more confused about it than I was. After tossing the book, I had to gauge their level of English and determine what to do about it. Having listening to them speak and asking them to write short paragraphs I decided to focus the class around four components: vocabulary, grammar, reading, and writing (OK I admit I also had input from my AP English teacher via email). Their proficiency has notably improved since September. My last class, music, was particularly difficult. I had both class five and class six combined, some 30 odd students. I was the only one with an instrument, my guitar, but it wasn't loud enough for all the students to hear so I couldn't play for them. They were also easily distracted by each other. My objectives would be to: enhance the students appreciation of music; expose the students to new genres of music; and teach basic concepts of music theory. They can now identify the sounds of John Coltrane's horn and Chris Martin's voice, the meanings of a major triad and a chord, and the significance and purpose music can serve in their lives. 

I also focused on connecting with my students on a personal level. In the months I have with them, I know I won't be able to teach them everything they need to learn. More important to me is impacting them with an understanding of the importance education will play in their lives. Before class everyday I join my students in the amphitheater, and its there I've learned about their parents, their brothers and sisters, their favorite television shows, their pets, their favorite places in Benares, and their dreams. It's there that I've practiced my newly learned Hindi words and sentences, and it's there that I'll hobble over them as though they're the slippery, barely exposed rocks peering out of a running creek you skip across to avoid falling in. 

My work at Nirman is the most fulfilling aspect of my Bridge Year experience thus far. Here I am engaged, challenged, and motivated by my students to enrich their lives and passions for learning. I take this role with full sincerity, and I can't say with certainty that I will succeed. But now that I have become their class teacher, I am sure that the real challenges lie ahead. 


Envoyé de mon iPad

[post_title] => Teaching at Nirman [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => teaching-at-nirman [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-01-20 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-01-20 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16481 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 269 [name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [slug] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 269 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 263 [count] => 33 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 3.10012 [cat_ID] => 269 [category_count] => 33 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [category_nicename] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [category_parent] => 263 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/princeton-bridge-year/bridge-year-india-fall-2012/ ) ) [category_links] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 )

Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

View post

Teaching at Nirman

Tyler Fair,Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

Description

Upon returning for the first time since December 18 to the Nirman School excitement, anxiety, and eagerness rushed through me. As I walked my bike inside the iron green gates separating the chaos of the street and the confinement of the school, the sound of them creaking open immediately brought back all the memories I’ve […]

Posted On

01/20/13

Author

Tyler Fair

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16482
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-01-20 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-01-20 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Before I came to India, before I started working at Guria, poverty seemed to me like a pretty cut and dry concept. Obviously, dealing with poverty is far from simple. But poverty itself is something that we, in the 21st century, with our news stories, expose movies and books, causes, organizations and statistics, is something that we've come to believe we all intellectually understand. It means lack of money, lack of opportunities. It means old clothing and poor living conditions. It means a dearth of food and a constant struggle to make ends meet. But since arriving at Guria, I've realized that, although we all know a lot of handy key phrases to describe poverty, these phrases stunt our understanding, making it bland and shallow.

 

At Guria's Non-Formal Education center, I teach computer and English class to the older girls. Computer class, to most, brings up memories of fooling around on Mavis Beacon, or maybe to some, learning more advanced computer functions. But at Guria, computer class means learning how to turn on and off a computer, to double-click with the mouse, to open a new folder and to type, at this stage, less than ten words per minute. From the beginning, I was struck by the fact that, before Guria got computers, these kids had never seen a computer in their life. Things that are obvious to us, so obvious that we don't even realize they are pieces of knowledge to be known or not known - things like knowing when the computer is on or off, understanding that the mouse controls the cursor on the screen, grasping the concept of files and folders and two files not being able to have the same name - are completely foreign to them. Suddenly I began to see the depth behind the hackneyed soundbyte that poverty is lack of opportunity. For these kids, it means never being able to work a job that requires you to go anywhere near a computer. It means never being able to use a computer in any of the many ways we use them every day. Imagine never using a computer again, imagine a job for which you'd never need to touch a computer-like device. For us, in America, imagining that goes beyond even the power of our well-trained imaginations. It was only last week, as we were reviewing how to turn on and off the computers, that I thought to ask how many of the kids have electricity in their homes. The answer? About half the kids who we are teaching how to use computers aren't even used to using electricity.

 

In English class, I go around the room, asking questions like, "what's your name?", "where are you from?", and "how old are you?". The other day was the first time I'd ever seen anyone stumble in response to the question "how old are you?". It was the first time I'd ever seen someone consult their friends about their age and come up with an answer only after a bit of disagreement. Although the questions and answers are supposed to be in English, the discussion about the girl's age was not an error in translation, it was all in Hindi. That is not nearly as common a phenomenon as not having any idea how to use a computer - the former I've witnessed only once, while the latter applies to all the kids at Guria - but it taught me just as much about poverty, and exponentially more than statistics or theses ever could.

 

One of the other volunteers at Guria once told me that perhaps the biggest impediment to the childrens' education is their lack of encouragement at home. It has been jarring for me to hear how many times the girls have told me that they aren't smart enough or can't do something - and to see how quick they are to give up when faced with a difficult classroom assignment. It's weird to see them rebuff compliments with responses of "no, I'm not smart," or "no, that wasn't good." But the flipside to that are some of my happiest moments at work. When we started English classes, some of the girls weren't interested, some didn't think it was worth the effort, and most had no faith in the English that they had learned thus far. Now, they all jump for the chance to be the one answering questions in class and clap joyfully when they get things right. Sometimes I'll be teaching computer class and suddenly hear, floating over from the other side of the room, "where are you from?", "I'm from India, where are you from?", and listen joyfully while they go through their entire repetoire of questions and answers. There are girls that insist they don't know enough English to answer my questions, but I insist that I'll help them through the answer, and somewhere in the process, they realize they can do it and suddenly, they're hungry to learn more.

They may know more English than they knew - or thought they knew - four months ago, but it's not the English phrases they can now say that make me happy. It's their excitement, their enthusiasm, their desire to learn, and, most importantly, their pride in what they have learned, that make up my happiest moments. I couldn't possibly teach them enough English to make a difference in their futures, but I couldn't ask for anything better than the ability to inspire them to want to learn and to challenge themselves, and most of all, to believe in themselves that they can face the challenges.

[post_title] => What Do Teachers Teach? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => what-do-teachers-teach [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-01-20 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-01-20 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16482 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 269 [name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [slug] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 269 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 263 [count] => 33 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 3.10012 [cat_ID] => 269 [category_count] => 33 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [category_nicename] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [category_parent] => 263 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/princeton-bridge-year/bridge-year-india-fall-2012/ ) ) [category_links] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 )

Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

View post

What Do Teachers Teach?

Hannah Vester,Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

Description

Before I came to India, before I started working at Guria, poverty seemed to me like a pretty cut and dry concept. Obviously, dealing with poverty is far from simple. But poverty itself is something that we, in the 21st century, with our news stories, expose movies and books, causes, organizations and statistics, is something […]

Posted On

01/20/13

Author

Hannah Vester

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 39260
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2013-01-05 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Ten or so days away from Banaras, and I’m back. By train and bus, we hopped from Jodhpur, to Jaisalmer, to Jaipur, and all three were beautiful — gems in the dazzling Maharaja’s crown that is Rajasthan.

An integral part of India’s transportation system is the train. Having taken around five or so overnight trains so far, I’ve come to conclude that riding the trains in India, despite the occasional wailing baby or pushy chai vendor, is unequivocally fun. A few months ago, I discovered that the Lonely Planet Guide for India had said that riding the rails is one of the most interesting things to do here; calling myself skeptical at that point would have been an understatement. They’re rugged (the degree of which largely depends on which train class you’re saddled with), but without fail, each overnight ride has introduced me to a myriad of jovial, enthusiastic, often off-kilter people from around India and the world.

For instance, on our journey from Banaras to Jodhpur, after devouring handfuls of trail mix, I needed water, but some dubious, narrow worm-like brown particles were floating in my water bottle. So I asked a neighbor when he thought the pani-walla would be coming, or if he knew where I could go to buy some. It turns out that he was some sort of official in the transportation sector of the Indian government. He adopted me as his “American beta,” or son, and insisted I consider him my “Hindustani pita-ji,” or father. After showering me with bottles of free water, he professed his worryingly intense distaste for China, and his adoration of America – he claimed that in his past life, he was undoubtedly American. He was quite a character.

Our first stop was Jodhpur. Once the home of the Rathore dynasty, the crowning jewel of the city is the grand Mehrangarh Fort. It sits atop a massive hill, surrounded by a tall, defensive wall. Today, the fort is a museum that lends its visitors views of massive, intricate palatial chambers; deadly weaponry – daggers, swords, spears – all finely carved works of art in their own right; and best of all, a sweeping panorama of Jodhpur and its craggy, barren surroundings. Jodhpur is referred to as the “Blue City.” Blue being an incredibly Brahmanic color, and also the color of Lord Shiva’s flesh, thousands of residents of Jodhpur have painted their homes a deep blue. Standing in the fort, gazing at the thousands of homes painted azure, the city creates a breathtaking contrast with the more sedate, sandy hues of the desert. Additionally in Mehrangarh, we discovered how many centuries ago, when dynasties like the Rathores were in power, Hindu women remained inpurdah. Before, I had thought ofpurdahas something practiced only by Muslim women. The fort, now turned museum, displayedhowdahs, or elephant saddles, that kept women completely hidden, and the fort was filled with windows that allowed women to peer down into courtyards and palatial pavilions, but protected them from the eyes of any men.

Jaisalmer is architecturally astounding. Just like Jodhpur, there is a gigantic fort that crowns the city. But the fort, and all the alleys it contains, are not the only astounding parts of Jaisalmer. The residential neighborhoods, inhabited by average middle and lower class families, are too. The workmanship and complex details are stunning: the houses are sculpted for kings, but average Jaisalmerians have the pleasure of living in the ornate works of art. Jaisalmer, instead of clashing with the landscape, blends in with the desert, most buildings made of rough sandstone.

Perhaps the most exciting part of our time in Rajasthan was our camel safari. We spent two nights on the sand dunes, sleeping under the stars. My camel, a massive beast, his neck and head as thick as the trunk of a redwood, was named Johnny Number One. I don’t know if he particularly liked me, but of him I was a fan. One of the Rajasthani camel handlers said that Johnny is his favorite. I could understand why; Johnny purses his lips in the most regal manner and towers over a good chunk of the other camels.

Sleeping in the desert is incredible. The desert breeze caresses your face, foreshadowing a chilly night. The dark, abyss-like sky of the desert arrives, and then the stars reveal themselves. A luminous moon keeps some of the stars hidden, but when you wake up in the middle of the night, tucked away in your sleeping bag, the moon has fled over the horizon, and a starry night sky shines up above, with shooting stars gracing the darkness every few minutes, and Jupiter shining brilliantly.

I spent Christmas Eve on an overnight bus from Jaisalmer to Jaipur. Our Christmas Eve meal wasat adhaba, or road side diner, where we enjoyed extra greasy paneer, subzi, and roti. Christmas Day was spent in Jaipur. Jaipur is a big city. Compared to Jaipur, Jaisalmer could be considered a desert hamlet. But being in a big city, a place where one would expect globalization to have come into play more dramatically, it was surprising how I felt like one would have been able to go the whole day without knowing it was Christmas. Every now and then, there was a lone Santa’s hat, and we did pass some sort of church dressed in Christmas lights, but beyond that, it could very well have been any other day in India. Regardless, I tried to spread the Christmas cheer. Donning a Santa’s hat and a red and green flannel, from the back of an auto rickshaw, I greeted passerbys with enthusiastic “Christmas Mubarak Ho!”s.

Our last day in Rajasthan culminated in the riding of animals infinitely more majestic than the camel (sorry, Johnny Number One) – elephants! With the Amber Fort in the background (Rajasthan is rightfully considered the land of forts and palaces), with craggy, undulating peaks in the distance, I rode an elephant! Could it have been any more picturesque? Riding an elephant up the hill to the fort, sauntering through the Hindu, Rajput fort, built in the geometric Mughal style, was a great way to end our journey through Rajasthan.

I think it was very valuable having time off to see more of India. Getting out of Banaras helps to remind you how India can be unequivocally gorgeous. Not that Banaras is not beautiful itself; it just does not fit the conventional, purely aesthetic sense of beauty. I think Banaras’ beauty stems from how so many insane, chaotic things manage to coexist: in all seriousness, I think that the contradictions and irony that inundate Banaras add to its charm. Regardless, seeing places like Rajasthan; seeing the ancient, ornate palaces; the mountainous sand dunes, built and detailed by the talented, prolific artist that is the wind, helps one realize how diverse India’s beauty is. On one end, there’s the objective, conventional kind of beauty in places like Mussoorie or Jaisalmer. And then there’s the atypical beauty that you find in places you would never expect – a serendipity of sorts.

[post_title] => Christmas in the Land of Kings [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => christmas-in-the-land-of-kings [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-01-05 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=39260 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 269 [name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [slug] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 269 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 263 [count] => 33 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 3.10012 [cat_ID] => 269 [category_count] => 33 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 [category_nicename] => bridge-year-india-fall-2012 [category_parent] => 263 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/princeton-bridge-year/bridge-year-india-fall-2012/ ) ) [category_links] => Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013 )

Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

View post

Christmas in the Land of Kings

Nicholas Sexton,Bridge Year India 2012 - 2013

Description

Ten or so days away from Banaras, and I’m back. By train and bus, we hopped from Jodhpur, to Jaisalmer, to Jaipur, and all three were beautiful — gems in the dazzling Maharaja’s crown that is Rajasthan. An integral part of India’s transportation system is the train. Having taken around five or so overnight trains […]

Posted On

01/5/13

Author

Nicholas Sexton

1 2 3 4