The love/hate relationship
animalia
India > Entertainment and Food in India > Community Forums > Humour - It Only Happens in India
#1
| Member

The love/hate relationship

Hi everyone,

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??

78 Replies

#2
| Sssmokin.....
Dear Animalia,

I have read once in this forum, that "India is not the faint hearted folks".

Its true. I am very sorry for the horryfying experience you had to go through in my country. I am happy that you decided to brush aside those bad experiences and set foot in my India once again. Welcome back.

I have read a lot of threads about Love and hate of the visitors to India. Check the following links.

http://www.indiamike.com/india/chai-...e-time-t32909/

http://www.indiamike.com/india/chai-...t-india-t1108/ I am wondering why this thread is not answered by anyone from 2002. :confused:

With Warm Regards

B.S.Prasad
Chance Favours The Prepared Mind

#3
| Maha Guru Member
Animalia,
I too feel sad and am sorry for the bad experience's you had. Disgusting to know what a handful of hooligans out of the ocean of beautiful people can screw the whole visit.

The love hate relationship is not just for traveler's or porener's (foreigner's). Even I go through it many times. I hate a lot of things in this country (which is largely because of the specific people) but then the love and pride for the nation is so strong that . . . [happy]

It is a pleasure to know your heart is calling you back.
Bike rides - Kashmir to Leh and Sikkim, Jungle safaris - Corbett,Chikhaldara, Kanha and Gorumara. Traveled through MP, Himachal, J&K, Maharashtra, W.Bengal, Sikkim, Uttarakhand, Goa, Karnataka, AP . . . Yet feel so New to traveling in India.
#4
| On the Road, wherever I am
It's amazing what rises to the top with the gift of distance and time. Each of us, individually, return home with an India that is like no one elses; India, for me, is the most intimate and personal travel experience I've ever had. There is much to sort through after returning. I find that time polishes some of the rough-edged memories. It doesn't wear them out, doesn't let me forget them; but it does put them in perspective. And I find too, that while the rough-edged memories are smoothed, the transcendent memories are sharpened; it is those memories that have called me back five times . . . almost three years in India . . . and I will go again . . .
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate; our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure - Marianne Williamson
#5
| Naan.tering Nabob

Originally posted by: animalia View Post

driven down dark alleys at night and groped).


Wow - your sentence structure implies multiple times? Were these sexual assaults by taxi drivers for this to happen more than once?
We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time. ~
T. S. Eliot

http://www.derekgrantdigital.com
#6
| Senior Member
A beautifully-worded post, Darmabum. I just finished up my fifth trip to India as well -- couldn't get away fast enough, it was a rough one -- and here I am thinking obsessively about the damn place again. An American who befriended my Indian in-laws once asked them the ultimate question: "Why do I love your horrible country?"
#7
| Sssmokin.....

Originally posted by: Magali View Post

"Why do I love your horrible country?"


Million dollar question Magali :D

With Warm Regards

B.S.Prasad
Chance Favours The Prepared Mind

#8
| ♥ ♥ ♥
Animalia - absolutely, it is a love/hate relationship! For all the very same reasons you mentioned.

With time away to reflect, the rough parts smooth out and the wonderful, colorful, simply ridiculous experiences take over. I can't wait to get back...it is like an obsession. Strange, but true what they say, 'once you visit India, you will never be the same again'.
#9
| Senior Member
I flew in 50 times before I got sick of airports, moved here permanently and love/hate it. It is like a rollercoaster at times as the frustrations beat you down and then some very small thing like a brilliant smile given for free clears all the bullshit away.
It is the intensity of India that makes living in the west very ordered, sedate and regulated in a pre destined way. In other words, somewhat colourless, boring and predictable
Give me the madness of India any day or night. I am alive in India.
#10
| Member
PeakXV - the back alleys grope only happened once (tuk tuk driver) ... maybe i implied it happened mutiple times by the word "alleys"? i guess the good thing was (and this shows the heart of the indian people and that gropers are an exception) was that someone came to my rescue

it is interesting and somewhat relieving to know i am not alone in my thoughts about India. I read a great quote too on here the other day ... basically saying that India is simultaneously horrible and amazing, and that that is its magic. hopefully next time I go, I learn to deal better with the horrible and see more of the amazing...
#11
| In charge, navel affairs
I think even Indians living in India have a love/hate relationship with it. I think this is healthy in any country, although the scale of acceptance of crap by this country gets me down sometimes.

Overanalysis is, sometimes, a problem. Maybe it is enough to say, overall, that one either likes or dislikes being somewhere. Or that one would rather be here than somewhere else.
.
This is computer generated drivel. No signature is required.
#12
| 7 Nation Army Member
India is tragic at times. It is heartbreaking, miserable, overwhelming, and chaotic. At the same moment, it is color, it is beauty, it is love and it is ALIVE.

No other place in world forces every emotion and every experience in life just by walking out the door every day. No other place have I been more alive and present in every instant.

I could never go back to "normal" life now, after India has stolen my heart. It is to her I long to return every single day.. even though she has broken my heart many times over.

It's absolutely a love/hate. Nicely worded, Darmabum - that sums it up nicely
There must be more to life than having everything. - Maurice Sendak
#13
| . . . _ _ _ . . .
The day I came back to Toronto after my second trip to India I went out in the evening to walk to the corner store. I passed nobody on the way there or back, no cars drove by me and all I could hear was the hum of air conditioners while blue light flickered from TV's in the front windows of houses. It was like a neutron bomb had gone off and I was the only person left on earth. I stood there for a while and felt very lonely and strange in my own neighborhood.
#14
| Senior Member
I think the thing about India is, is that it challenges you mentally, physically, morally and emotionally. It forces a response from you.
#15
| Senior Member

Originally posted by: animalia View Post

Hi everyone,

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??


hi Animalia,
there are two kinds of people who visit india. the first type is they always come back and the second type is they never come back. i havent seen the third kind yet.it was unfortunate what you experienced here but as you said you should come prepared next time. it depends on the people you choose to be with. and if you really want to volunteer for a good cause start something of your own. 99%of the ngo`s are made for taking funds and they do nothing but scams.do a little bit of your home work before you visit another world. INDIA IS NOT JUST ANOTHER COUNTRY ITS ANOTHER WORLD.wish you only good experinces in your next trip.
regards.