Running a Race...
The GCIL program feels a lot like running a race. Autumn quarter you spend training for the competition ahead. You train with your teammates, scope the playing field and focus on the goal. After months of work you depart for the final event. When you finally step up to the starting line, you feel the weight of the past few months on your shoulders. You look to the side at the ref who raises his arm in the air, shrouded in an orange cloth. He raises the gun, you are ready for the shot so you can start the race. But you don’t hear it.
You wait for the crack of the gun to signal the start of your adventure, until three weeks later you finally hear it. You finally get to work with your organization. It’s at this point that my metaphor might be breaking down. Those first three weeks are amazing. You travel the city, meet new people, try new food and explore the world of Bangalore. It is something that I have never experienced before, and probably won’t have an opportunity to do so again.
Every experience was unique, but they all seemed to be incomplete, like they were waiting for something.-like the pause before the gunshot. Because at the end of week three, you get to start working with your organizations. Working with your organization everyday is the same exhilarating blend of emotions as at the start of a race.. While my metaphor may be completely broken at this point, the energy you feel when you are running a race is the same energy you feel everyday on the GCIL program. It’s a signature blend of exuberance, excitement, and a small amount of apprehension.
While working with the Ugly Indian, I have been impressed, astounded and frustrated in equal parts at times. Their solutions to problems are so perfect and confusing it is hard to wrap your head around. Spending time with my organization has been educational. That sentence sounds dry and boring but it is ultimately the truth. I have learned about the Indian idea of time, how to conduct a proper survey and turn it into a report, and a few of the intricacies of the Indian governmental system which I could spend a lifetime getting acquainted with. Each day is different but somehow feels the same. It feels like we are all where we are supposed to be, for right now at least.