Well, this is it! There has scarcely been anything else that I have been able to focus on for that past couple months, and finally the day is here for me to leave. First, to visit my dear aunt Viiu in London, then onwards to India!
What will this trip be for me? It is hard for others to imagine its significance. I pulled out one of my 'Learn Hindi' books the other day, and I realized that I had purchased it 11 years ago. Man, I have wanted to go to India for a while, I guess. I always knew I would go, I just never knew when. It seemed so impossible for so long – even just a few years ago.
I wonder if this trip will conclude my fascination with India, or ignite it? Will I come home wanting only to go back? Or will I be satisfied that I have connected with that part of my soul there, and then put away my hindi tapes? I can't be sure of much except the following:
1. I will love India
2. I will despise India.
3. India will change me.
4. India will bring me back to my self.
I want to take this moment to thank a few people who have been critically important in getting me on this trip. Of course, probably any of you reading this have my gratitude, but a few persons very tangibly made this trip possible.
First, I want to thank my aunt Viiu, without whose generosity I could not possibly spend any time in England. Her promise that I not spend a cent of my own money in 10 days is amazingly generous, and I don't know how to ever pay her back. Next, I want to thank Pat Slagowski for being a wonderful person and the best employer I have ever had. Allowing me an extended leave from work has been crucial to me. (And, if you don't know Full Circle Foods in Kitchener, please check out the best darn natural foods store in the region!) Theresa Hanley also needs a special thank you, since beyond being a wonderful human being, kind friend and gourmet-raw-chef-preparing-roommate, she is taking care of my cat while I am gone. Huge, huge thanks for that. I also want to thank Prof. Darrol Bryant for generously helping me be a part of his 3 week journey in India. Lastly, but of course not least, I need to thank my father for his financial assistance which has helped me do this, and my mom who continually helps both her sons in ways that put most parents to shame – thank you for helping in so, so many ways!