Once we got back to Colgate, the first thing I did was I got on facetime with my mother to tell her how incredible India was. I told her everything from the naan stealing monkeys to seeing one of the oldest caves. I now realize that recounting the stories to her was my way of coping with the fact that I wasn’t in India anymore. Through storytelling, I was able to relive all the memorable moments I was describing. This is why I didn’t mind consistently telling the same stories about my experiences abroad.
I didn’t want to accept the fact that the trip was over which is what made adjusting back to being at Colgate extremely difficult. I would subconsciously compare the food, the weather, etc. to India and then have a sense of yearning to be back there. As the semester began, I fell into my normal routine of going to classes, hanging out with friends, going to work, etc. The longing that I had in the beginning of being back in the United States slowly dwindled since India was not always on the forefront of my mind.
There are plenty of memories that left an impression on me. One of which occurred when we were on the bus passing by impoverished communities. All the mosques and temples in the communities were extremely beautiful in contrast to its surroundings. It looked as if the members did everything they possibly could to make sure these places of worship were perfect (even if it meant donating what little they had). I remember being left in awe because I admired how much selflessness these people had and how strong their faiths were. Memories such as these have left a huge impact on my life which is why I am so grateful to have been a part of this wonderful opportunity.