After the 3 plane ticket purchases and numerous obstacles, I am pleased to say I’m finally in India. I was starting to take it personally that my efforts were thwarted but now that I am here I am happy that things are falling into place.
I flew into Delhi and tried my hand at Couchsurfing for the first time. I have come to discover the popularity of this online network of travelers and hosts from all over the world. The premise and success of CS lie in its global community and in their words “ a world where everyone can explore and create meaningful connections with the people and places they encounter.” I stayed three nights in Delhi at the home of a family before moving to a friend’s home. I was able to see a different side of Delhi through this more personal interaction than I would have had simply staying at a guesthouse.
Perhaps it is not so surprising that the majority of hosts are men on CS India. The subsequent 30+ email invitations I’ve received to stay, meet up for a drink since my status shows me in DELHI is a bit overwhelming and leaves me wondering if CS India is viewed as a potential matchmaking service?! If my new cellphone is anything to go by, it is hard to deny how important dating and astrology are in this culture.
On the subject of cellphones, it has been joked that I am the subject of Japanese Urban Legend “as the girl in Tokyo who doesn’t have a cellphone”. Well, that all changed this week when I was given a cell to ease communications while in India. I am trying to make the transition easier and by setting a Punjabi beat ring tone and “Om Shanti” text message welcome and am now set on getting up to speed on how to SMS and recognise that the intrusive ringing may actually be me!