An Indian Wedding

“Now and then it’s good to pause in our pursuit of happiness and just be happy.”


Attending an Indian marriage gave me an insight into just how different cultures can be. The day of the ceremony itself was filled with food (served from buckets as everyone ate rice, mutton, and dal with their hands) and Indian music and dancing. From the outside it looked like a pretty simple affair, until I learned the details about marriage in India, which confirmed what I already knew… I will never marry an Indian man!

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Adopted By a Village

“All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.”


If it’s possible to be overwhelmed by hospitality and kindness, I have definitely found the village for it. Though I had only planned to stay one night, within an hour, the first lady to take me in made me promise I would stay at least a week, and, well, why not! Throughout my stay, she and others then tried to get me to stay for a month (and a year!), and finally after nearly two weeks, I managed to leave, but not without turning down countless offers, from just about everyone I met, to stay at their homes at least a few nights. People had heard I was staying in the area and were calling the two different families (related somehow, cousin of cousin or something) I stayed with everyday to invite me all over to their homes. I couldn’t even go for a walk without being invited into multiple people’s house for tea. The families I met first fought for me, turning down offers from others, and sharing me like a child with divorced parents. Since families here are so intertwined and enormous (they have “the uncle-of-my-sister’s-cousin’s-brother type of relationships), basically everyone I met in the village and surrounding area was somehow family.

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The Real India: 3985km

“I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I intended to be.”


Ladakh and Spiti aren’t really India. I mean sure, they are technically, but the people don’t look Indian, the culture and language is Tibetan, and it’s clean, cold, and deserted, words never associated with the rest of India. For the past week I have been in the real India though. The crazy, chaotic, busy India, filled with people, cows, and monkeys. An India, that, unfortunately, I wasn’t looking forward to cycling through. Though I will someday visit the rest of the country, it is not an endeavor I plan to undertake with my bike. That being said, my last few weeks have shown me that it’s the people, not only the climate or scenery, that makes travel what it is.

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Monkey Business

“Whatever you are, be a good one.”


Like most children, I use to dream of having a monkey for a pet, so the idea of monkeys running around town thrilled me. After coming down from Ladakh where there were none, I was surprised and delighted to see them scampering on rooftops and riffling through the trash. Though I knew India was known for them, I really hadn’t expect them to be as prevalent as squirrels for me back home. I have been caught off guard on many occasions as I opened my door to find a monkey sitting nonchalantly on my patio or steps. I have also been frightened as they hiss at me when I walk by, or when I see a large obviously dominate male in my way on the road.

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