Occasionally I re-read what I have written. That is how the other day I came across my first post about India. There is one specific quote I would like to share with you here:
We heard so much mainly negative stories about India before we crossed the border that we had mixed feelings about coming here, especially after the whole embassy debacle. Herewith I say to each and every one of you out there that wishes to say anything negative: you are crazy! We have never met a genuinely friendlier people.
The truth about India is that you will either love it or hate it (as we were also told by Bea, a Canadian girl we met in Nepal).
The truth about me is that most of those first two weeks in India had slipped my mind (except for the Taj Mahal and the tigers). I’d forgotten about the people we met in the train to Jalgoan who immediately and without us having to ask arranged for someone to pick us up at the train station and help us further. I had forgotten about the people in Lucknow treating us like Bollywood stars. I had forgotten about the girl calling up all her friends to see who could give us a ride – because there was no way we could even consider taking the local bus. I had forgotten.
The reason for my amnesia is most likely to do with the attitude of a lot of Indians during the second part of our stay. I think this would be best explained by what an Indian couple we met in Vietnam said: “India should be making it much easier for tourists as they could be a great source of income. Instead they seem to be working against tourists by not treating them as humans but walking dollar signs.”
It is exhausting to have to haggle about every single thing you buy, because every single price they give you is ridiculously high. I know you have to haggle in Asia. That’s okay; you accept that as part of the experience. You also come to terms with the fact that you overpay every time, everywhere. It is a different story altogether in India. They will not only make you pay six or seven times the price for even just a coffee or a fruit juice, they will not bulge. There is no haggling, really. It is their way or the highway.
Which is just so tiresome. It makes you just wanna jump on the first airplane out – screaming – before falling away into oblivion, a dreamless sleep, knowing you will wake up in a different country.
Than I re-read what I wrote, and I cannot help but remember how good it was as well.