India Culture Shock: Food Poisoning and Trash Collection

Balancing Respect and Sharing Experiences

When it comes to posting about my travel experiences, I feel like sometimes there’s a balance I have to maintain. I want to be respectful of the people that I encounter while also talking about what I see. I think it can be hard for outsiders to understand other cultures, and that’s why I like to talk about things that I encounter.

Building Connections in India

It’s important to recognize that people everywhere learn to work with the environment they are given and within that environment there are some wonderful people. Here in India, the people at the company where I have been working are like a family to me and honestly I don’t have a lot of family, so I appreciate them so much. Anything that I need they are there to help me and that is very meaningful to someone in my position.

A Health Scare and a Supportive Community

That being said, I encountered one problem, where I got food poisoning the other day from some food that was brought from the outside and I was vomiting and had diarrhea and of course you know everyone warns about being careful when going to India. I’ve already spent more than two months here and nothing happened until now. And fortunately I recovered pretty quickly. Everyone was supportive and they actually had a big prayer for me in the office when I wasn’t there. They went to the store and got everything that I needed. They brought me special soft foods that I could eat. They got an appointment with the doctor and got some medicine for me. They really helped handle the situation very well.

Celebrating Holi: A Joyful Experience

Another fascinating experience has been participating in the local festivals. Recently, I took part in Holi, the festival of colors. It was an incredible experience, full of joy and celebration. I got drenched in vibrant colors and danced with locals, which made me feel very connected to the community. The sense of unity and the pure happiness shared during the festival were truly heartwarming. It’s moments like these that make travel so enriching and memorable.

Cultural Shocks: Dealing with Trash

And then a cultural shock that I encountered relates to trash. In many places in India, there is little or no public trash collection system, and that seems to be the case here in the VSS Nagar section of Bhubaneswar. In my room I always wondered what they did with the trash. Then I noticed this morning that the man that comes and cleans my room, collected the trash out of the trashcan, opened the window and threw it into the creek outside. This was very shocking to me at first.

Hope for the Future

But I’ve done some thought about this and I feel like there really is no better way to do something when there is no place to take the trash but I do have some hope. Many people are saying that the next decade will be the decade of India, and I believe that because the economy is growing at more than 7% every year and it is clear that life is going to be getting better and better here and I’m sure things like a trash collection, system and better and better hygiene are soon to come. So I’m very proud to be part of that as I help to develop a company here that will prosper more and more in the future. That said, I am only here for a short stents, and then I have the freedom to go travel other places and that is so wonderful.