One of the visits I probably would never forget is the visit to Bangalore’s Vidya. It’s a chance to see how young women in India struggle, what motivates them and how hard they work.
They struggle with the cultural imposition to women. Their hands are tied. But one thing drives them – their families. Their kids. For example, learning English is a priority because they wanted to talk to their kids in English. Most Indians DO NOT speak English. The people we meet are not at the bottom of the pyramid, and with 1.2billion people, there’s a lot of them. But far more numerous are the ones who struggle on a daily basis.
Vidya is about helping these young women help themselves. And I can’t think of a better way to do it.
I felt like was in Baclaran in steroids. (Baclaran is a market in the Philippines).
Bengaluru Public Market was noisy, crowded and overflowing! There were people shouting everywhere (as their marketing tool, I think). As with the other Bangalore tours, all I know in terms of the logistics is “be at the hotel lobby by 1pm”.
This was an interesting visit. Apparently, the Bangalore Fort is a pretty tricky one – there are seven (?) layers, and they are formed like a maze. So you don’t know if you’re supposed to turn left or right, and the odds of anyone getting all seven correctly is pretty low.
The gates also have spikes on them – mainly to scare off elephants charging the doors. And these gates aren’t really the entrances – there’s a small door on the side, that curves through the other side, so that enemies will not see what’s on the other side of the curve.
Overall, if you just go to the place, there’s pretty much nothing there but walls. So please get a guide, and have a bit more appreciation of the place.
Bonus – there’s a not-for-kids shape in this side of the wall:
It takes TEN HOURS to fly to India. TEN HOURS. It’s my longest flight to date! I’m still not sure if I hate it or if I’m excited.
Take the bag tag and attach it to all your bags. Once you go through baggage screening, they have to stamp these bag tags.
Prepare for a very personal body scan. It was very professionally done, with the girls having a covered area. But still, it was the most personal scan I ever had.
Arrange for car transport if you are arriving at night. Even priced at a premium, it’s probably worth it.
So. Here’s how my flight went:
We met at around 10am (Narita Terminal 2) to board our flight.
It wasn’t such a long flight. Maybe because I loved watching Now You See Me and Kimi No Nawa. I took a nap in between, then proceed to randomly watch videos. Yeah, I loved all those nine-ish hours.
I was so excited! Then our group had some issues with the confusion in the line for the eTV (electronic Tourist Visa). Basically we went to the wrong line. Honestly, these people weren’t so helpful. But moving on!
It was a really, really, long flight. We got in our hotel at around 2am! O.O