driven down dark alleys at night and groped).
I undertook my first trip to India last year from Nov - Jan and I finally understood why people say that it's a love/hate relationship. However, a lot of the love only came in retrospect, after being able to appreciate the good things that happened in amongst all the stressful and sometimes straight out nightmarish things.
I couldn't wait to leave India after 7 weeks ... there were so many things that drove me insane or made me depressed. For one, I went to volunteer with animals in Jaipur, only to find out that the project was a cunningly created scam. Second, I was molested several times (groped in privates, had breast almost torn off by man on a motorcycle, driven down dark alleys at night and groped). Third, I did end up volunteering to work with both slum children and street animals (dogs, cows, horses) and cried every day at the conditions that I saw them in. These rough parts of the trip oveshadowed the better parts - like the beauty of the buildings and the temples, the amazing music and culture and the nice friends I made.
I left India swearing I would never go back, thinking that I obviously couldn't hack it and should choose a less challenging destination next time. 6 months later - I think about that crazy place every day and want to go back. I feel better prepared and more accepting of the fact that the spirituality and beauty comes hand in hand with the suffering and frustration...
I don't know if this is a common feeling ... has anyone else felt the same? Did India madden and sadden you, but invade your dreams (and nightmares) and call you back to her crazy, chaotic bosom??