We went to India with low to negative one million expectations. I believe, that was the best mindset to be in because let me tell you, there isn’t a single blog, or article or whatever that can properly put that place to words. There’s nothing that can prepare you for your first trip to India, not even months in South Africa, Zanzibar, Kenya, and Egypt…India is its own special form of chaos.… That said, we’re not going to write much about the two months we spent wandering Northern India because we think it’s quite literally impossible to do it justice, as there’s some form of unfathomable mayhem waiting around every corner. A few examples: A) men and children treat even the busiest streets as their personal toilet for #1 & #2 (yes, #2 means poop). It’s mind boggling, the number of times we saw a man holding his winker, relieving himself or children shitting so casually as if their sitting on a private thrown in the comfort of their own home. They squat nicely with their chin in their hands, just watching the world go by while making mud. Our favorite move was when a kid would pull his pants down, and shit standing up while bending over slightly and rocking onto their toes to watch the doo-doo splatter against the ground. I was actually quite happy to know that even the local bodies create liquid poo from the food, and it wasn’t just us. Example B) of chaos… In Varanasi they publicly cremate their dead loved ones (we literally saw flesh drip from bones) on the side of their holiest river, as well as drop bodies that weren’t exactly worthy of cremation (if a dead person was pregnant, or a child, or died from a snake bite or had leprosy, etc. they weren’t allowed to be burned and instead they had rocks tied to them and were taken by boat and dropped into the middle) into the said river where water buffalo bathe and shit and people bathe and clean their clothes, and apparently turtles eat the bodies… Think about it, the same river where bodies are dispensed, burnt to ashes and then brushed into it, is the same river where the people clean themselves….and where the tap water comes from. What. What. What. Example C-Z) Uncontrollable and violent diarrhea, cows everywhere, people everywhere, stinky everything everywhere, 50-100 people per day asking to take your photo, 50-100 people per day trying to take advantage of you, booze is tough to find which obviously sucks, so much color your eyes want to explode, so much noise your ears want to explode, smog like you couldn’t imagine, views that can’t ever and will never get old, same with the architecture, the cutest children in the world, the creepiest adult men in the world, the most wonderful adult women in the world, religious sites that put every cathedral to shame, in-your-face poverty that makes your heart hurt tremendously, the best food ever ever ever, monkeys, stray dogs, tuk-tuks trying to run you over, incredible shopping, super intense and explosive haggling… the list goes on and on and on.
In short (haha), I believe you can use every adjective in the dictionary to describe India. It’s all of the senses and all of the emotions at once. If that isn’t a mind-fuck, I don’t know what is. I can guarantee you three things upon stepping foot in India; 1) you’ll eat the best food of your life 2) even if you’re the least violent person, you will absolutely contemplate hitting a human or two on the daily while touring the land of India. 3) nothing, I mean nothing, about the way people go about their day-to-day life will make sense to you.
Lastly, we’re definitely going back again and again. Enjoy the photos from our painful, beautiful, exhausting, exhilarating, rewarding trip to India. A quick note on some surprises - India has virtually every landscape; snow-capped mountains, frozen deserts, thick forests, never-ending plains, jungles, rolling green hills, hotter than anything deserts, lakes, rivers - and about 100 different ethnic groups, cuisines, and languages. It would take years to really “see” India…and we hope to. This is one incredible place.