“A Country of Contrast”

Hello from the country of contrast, the country of color and the country of pollution, the country of incense and urine, tigers and bedbugs, curry and parasites, of unprecedented friendliness and unbelievable disdain. We greet you from a place we love so much and hate so much, we want to leave, we want to stay forever.  Hello from India.

Flower Market

I am writing on our last day in Calcutta and in a way our last day in proper India, for tonight we leave for Sikkim a state that doesn’t consider itself a part of India. We have spent the last week volunteering at the sisters of charity, a service to the poor of Calcutta that fits right into the rest of our experience in India, we loved to volunteer there and the people were amazing, while other parts of it left us confused and baffled wondering how to respond. We also connected with a friend from Flagstaff that works with IJM (international justice mission, working to end slavery) an organization that we have been sincerely interested in for a long time as they fight for prevention at the very core of society issues and work to change laws and enforce laws that are ignored. It was really good to talk about Flagstaff and see how the organization looks in the field. Our time has been very well spent, however I will say that I am ready to leave especially as we head to the mountains. Eric and Michael set out a couple days earlier and kind of did some trailblazing. Before we meet up with them we’re going celebrate Mel’s birthday early by spending two nights at an all inclusive organic farm called Yangsum, we are very excited.

The godess "Kali" she defeats evil though consumtion.

We had a great treat here in Calcutta as we were here for the festival of Diwali and for a whole week the city shut down to party. It is a holiday equivilant in magnitude to Christmas. Lights covered the city and Fireworks shot off until 2 in the morning every night. The festival celebrates the annual return of Kali who literally consumes evil. Dancing and Music abound. The contrast lies in that “Kali” is a bloodthirsty deity who’s image is found on every corner covered in blood ( not real blood, though blood letting is a form of worship for the devout).

 

outside our guest house, Kolkata

Varanasi ally

 

 

 

 

India has been an unforgettable experience  as there is no other place in the world that shows the pollution and the color of our lives so vividly in the same moment.

 

 

 

The holy saddhu gazing over the polluted Ganges

 

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