Change is exciting, but I’ve found that I don’t fall in love with the changes until things are about to go back to normal.
Now I realize I’ve fallen in love with watching out the side of tuk tuks, not needing to layer up for constant fluctuations in weather, and being surrounded by unmanaged green space which allows trees and bushes covered in different types of leaves and sometimes even flowers within flowers to droop over roads and sidewalks, getting in your face and demanding you to admire them.
This “getting in your face” and disrupting your flow seems to be a common pattern seen throughout Bangalore. The broken up sidewalks disrupt your path and the honking in traffic disrupts your thoughts, but the disruption makes me more mindful of my environment, which is something I noticed to be lacking in the invisibly designed convenience that is being applied to everything in Seattle.
This city has taught me things that I can apply to teamwork (such as planning things out so I do not have to uproot work that has already been done → looking at you urban planners, why are there so many broken sidewalks?), and society (such as how caste is not legal, but it still affects people for generations. How might a society eliminate imaginary labels of social status to cultivate inclusive communities? (Side note: this is probably the fastest ‘how might’ question I’ve been able to write)).
I know that there will be many more questions and reflections on my experiences that will pop up even when I am not thinking about India, and I look forward to experiencing them and thinking back on the value that I gained in this hugely diverse and complicated city.