SENSEing India !!!!!! by: Gabby Bergstrom

What I am about to describe to you is what I’ve experienced in India, through my 5 ish senses.

1.     Sound: Stifled giggles from the group as Raj scoffs at the “13 years of experience”d yoga instructor. Resonating ring of the ceremonial bells during a traditional Hindu sacrament. Constant conversations seeming to happen by the cars and busses in traffic on the way to school. Boisterous laughter from the group, yet again, as we carelessly dance and sing to wake the whole city. “Deedee deedee!”, meaning sister in Hindi, shouted by my students daily.

2.     Taste: Curry. Naan & cucumbers. Oh, and those On Guard cough drops Carrie brings to me every day because I’m sick. NO thanks to the air quality & also probably Taneh.

3.     Smell: Fire. Incense. Poop. Dead animals. Me?

4.     Touch: My hydroflask, hydr8 everyone. Shutter button on my camera to capture every moment. Guitar strings so we can practice for our culture exchange. Dust, so much dust. NOT the gross, sad, & dirty puppies. Ayna wiping away my tears after Chris read my mom’s comment on my last blog post. (Yes, I cried. Is that a surprise?) The little hands holding mine only after 5 short days, but has felt like my forever. I wish it could be.

5.     Sight: Many marijuana leaves contrasted with many beautiful trees on the bus drive home from school. 4 large spiders (*frowny face*). Many, almost, fist fights between Dyani and Joseph during our lunch breaks at school. Bright, cheerful colored buildings and people. A lifetime’s worth of experiences and a whole lot of love in the chocolate brown eyes and contagious smiles of my kids.

6.     Felt: An immense amount of love for my village team, my expedition team, my leaders, and my translators (especially Ayna, she rules). Flabbergasted at the 2 inches our bus drivers constantly are from hitting another car, or anything else in their path. Sadness and anger at my inability to help everyone I see living in complete and utter poverty. Unexplainable amount of joy that every single human in my group brings me. Engulfing anticipation and excitement to see my kids again. Inversely, overwhelming dread for saying goodbye to them on Wednesday.


In summary, I’m sad and that’s all I’ve got the energy to write. Mom, tell Oscar I miss him. Also I miss you all. Thanks to anyone who read this all. Anyway, see ya later. Love ya.