By Catalina Quinones
These two weeks in India have been amazing. Working at a hotel is a good opportunity to meet people from different cultures and backgrounds. During the last past weekends Laura and I decided to go to the city. It was an amazing experience. Indians, specially women, couldn’t stop looking us in a strange way, even though we were using appropriate clothes. We went to various temples in Kerala but we couldn’t get in because foreigners are not allow to enter.
One night our boss invite us to a local famous restaurant to try some Indian food. Everyone was eating with their right hand. In India the left hand it is known as the “dirty hand”. It was an amazing experience. I thought that eating with the right hand was going to be easy, but it is not. Trying to cut the food with just one hand was hard but interesting. I was actually really impressed by the menu and the food. Indian food is delicious!
India has several water problems (treatment and sewage) and this is the reason why in India it is very difficult to find a drink with ice. Even though the weather in India is really hot and humid, they have to drink room temperature beverages. Honestly, I never thought that I will miss ice so bad. After the dinner, we went to the cinema. When we got there, I just saw men in the line. The only women were Laura and me. I asked my boss about it and he said that Indian women do not go to the cinema or clubs, because in their culture women can only go out during the day and stay at home at night. It is amazing to realize how women rights and behaviors change through cultures.
These experiences have helped me value more my culture, especially the freedom and rights women have. However, I have had an incredible time in India and met wonderful people. It has been an amazing learning experience including both positive and negative situations.