Share on Pinterest

Chapati has may uses. It is food, of course, an Indian bread. But it also serves as a utensil, a fork or spoon, to scoop up whatever the vegetable of the day may be. Or as a spatula, placing one on top of another on the frying pan to spin and press and turn the uncooked dough. Or as even a potholder, folded in half to not burn your hand as you pick up a hot dish....

In a sea of black hair and headscarves i was the only blonde. The only other color that came close were the gray strands of some elder men. And while pierced left noses were a dime a dozen my right nostril was the only one adorned. The tiny diamond I wear there paled in comparison to most of the other stones: large diamonds, red rubies, jeweled hoops. Every other woman besides me and the younger children was wearing a sari and all of the men were in some degree of collared shirt. Jaime was across the makeshift aisle, separated in boys...

Jaipur may not have been my idea of a pink city, but the blue city of Jodhpur, India, where many of the buildings and houses are painted blue, was pretty blue, if only from a distance.   The Blue City of Jodhpur, India The train ride to Jodhpur was an exhausting five hours. It was better than the last one we took, a clown car of a train that at every stop piled on more people than you could ever think would fit, where Jaime and I couldn't even see each other across the aisle, where the doors wouldn't close and people were...

Is it bad to say that, really, the only thing I knew was in India is the Taj Mahal? And even then I'm not sure I'd ever have been entirely confident to say it was in India? But, for the record, it is. Agra, India, to be exact. And it's amazing, even if I had to wake up before 6am to "beat the crowds*" to visit it. But, now that I've been, I'm still not all that sure what else there is to see in India…...

India is already proving to be one of those places I have a love/hate relationship with. The highs are pretty high, already some of the most amazing moments I've had on this trip, but the lows are intense and breaking. And my mood and feelings can switch instantaneously. One minute I'm laughing as we teach Jaime how to use a squat toilet in our hotel room. The next I'm frantically throwing all my things onto the bed when the shower overflows and leaks into the room and all over my bags....

Of everywhere I've traveled so far, India has been the place whose first impression lived up to the image I had in my imagination. Unpaved streets lined with garbage and neon lights. Cows and elephants intermixing with cars and motorbikes and rickshaws on the road. Stares from every man. It's the kind of place where you either absolutely love or absolutely hate. A mutual feeling that can change in a heartbeat. I arrived late in New Delhi, after 2 in the morning and hijacked my way into a hotel pickup I didn't reserve. But after midnight, by yourself, in a new...