Expectations..?

Emma Boe - India


August 14, 2017

If I tell you: «I’ll be taking a gap year in India», it might trigger you to think along these lines:

[1]

[2]

 And if I tell you I’ll be volunteering at a school for less privileged children, this might pop into your head: 

However, I am neither going to India to “find myself” or to «save» others. Through my stay in India I hope to achieve a better understanding of the culture, which is so different from my own. I want to learn a new way of living and reflect on both the positive and negative aspects of the different lifestyle and culture I will meet. Hopefully it will put my own culture, living standards and privilege in a new perspective. 


I am expecting hardships such as a cultural shock much greater than what I experienced when I moved to Hong Kong two years ago. I am worried I will feel very lonely when my Hindi or Marathi skills aren’t sufficient for other than basic communication. Or that I’ll be starving the whole first month as my spice tolerance is close to zero. However, I am also expecting to grow immensely on all these challenges and all the other obstacles I have not foreseen, but will come along the way. 


I hope to be surprised, to experience outside my expectations. I am hoping to be in my stretch zone, as Global Citizen Year (abbreviated: GCY) so greatly describes it. I truly agree with GCYs idea that learning and growth happens outside that oh so comfortable comfort zone. Lastly I expect this experience to follow and shape me long after I’ve sat that plane ride home in April. 

 

Throughout the following year I will publish occasional blog posts here to keep you updated on my experiences. I am warning you already now that my English skills probably could have been better. (Heh, that’s for not taking an English course during the IB). And also that I do tend to forget posting in very large time intervals. (Experience from the previous blog I kept during my stay in Hong Kong). In the following 8 months I will be staying in Pune, India. Here are some fun facts: 

·      “Pune is the ninth most populous city in India”[3] with a population of 3,1 million people3. (I believe Pune is pronounced the way you would read it in Norwegian.)

·      Almost half of all international students study in Pune[4], and for example Mahindra UWC is located outside the city. (Maybe I’ll randomly come over some fellow Norwegians or UWC’ers. That would be cool.)

·      Badminton originated from Pune[5].

·      After Hyderabad, Pune was ranked to have the best living conditions in India[6]

 

Now that you know some fun facts about Pune, you might wonder where this pretty awesome city is located. Well, I got you covered: (assuming you can locate India that is). 

[7]

Now there are only 15 days until I board my plane to San Francisco where I will take part in an introduction week. Then I’ll head of to the land of cricket, chai and chicken curry. 

Until then!

            -Emma



[1] Imgur. “”Daddy Paid for Me to Go Be a Nuisance in India” Starter Pack.” Imgur. 05 June 2017. Web. 12 Aug. 2017.

[2] Imgur. “The “gap Year in India” Starterpack.” Imgur. 20 May 2015. Web. 12 Aug. 2017.

 

[3] “Pune.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 11 Aug. 2017. Web. 12 Aug. 2017. 

 

[4] “Pune.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 11 Aug. 2017. Web. 12 Aug. 2017. 

 

[5] “Pune.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 11 Aug. 2017. Web. 12 Aug. 2017. 

 

[6] “Pune.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 11 Aug. 2017. Web. 12 Aug. 2017. 

(Yes I am quoting Wikipedia, #ReliableSources)


[7] Google Maps. Web. 12 Aug. 2017.

 

Emma Boe