Mitt India / My India

English

India er vanskelig å beskrive med ord. Fotografier forteller noe, men ikke alle følelser og inntrykk. Som den enorme livsgleden til barn i India selv om de lever i en fattigdom som er ubegripelig for nordmenn flest. De ti-feltsmotorveiene med hellige kuer midt i veien. Eller tårene over den lille jenta som brukte hodet til sin tre måneder gamle søster til å banke på bilruten vår for å få penger. Følelsen av avmakt og total hjelpeløshet da jeg ble tatt med til New Delhis verste slum og fikk se mødre, fedre, barn, brødre, søstre som var plassert i et avlukke av slektningene sine fordi de hadde psykiske problemer. De var uten mat og ute av stand til å gå noe sted. Tiggerne som strømmet til ved enhvert stans på røde trafikklys med ben, armer og ledd vridd i fullstendig gal retning.

Jeg både elsker og hater India. Landet fikk meg til å gråte minst én gang om dagen. Inntrykkene som ubarmhjertig trenger seg på uten stans når man er i dette landet, gir en svært kort vei fra latter til tårer.

“Expat” Catherine Taylorin hadde en god beskrivelse av sitt opphold i India i avisen “The Australian” for noen år siden:  

I needed something new, exciting, thrilling, terrifying. And India gave that to me in spades. In fact, she turned it all the way up to 11. And then she turned it up a little more.  … The closest I have come to answering how it`s like living in India,  is that it’s like being in a very intense, extremely dysfunctional relationship. India and I fight, we scream, we argue, we don’t speak for days on end, but really, deep down, we love each other. She’s a strange beast, this India. She hugs me, so tightly sometimes that I can’t breathe, then she turns and punches me hard in the face, leaving me stunned. Then she hugs me again, and suddenly I know everything will be all right.

In short, I have been among the luckiest of the lucky. She keeps me on my toes, Ms India, and I have been blessed that she let me stay for a while. She welcomed me. And when I leave, because I know I will one day, I will weep, because I will miss her terribly. And because I know she won’t even notice that I am gone.

Dette er mitt India.

 

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English

My India

India is difficult to describe with words. Photographs shows you the physical things, but not feelings and impressions. Such as the children’s enormous exuberance for life even when they live in an extreme poverty many can not imagine. The ten-field highways with sacred cows in the middle of the road. Or the tears for the little girl who used her three-month-old sister`s head to knock on our car window to get money. The feeling of powerlessness and totally helplessness when I was taken to New Delhi’s worst slum and seeing the mothers, fathers, children, brothers, sisters who were placed in a buncer by their relatives because they had mental disorders. They were without food and unable to go anywhere. Beggars who flocked at every stop on red traffic light with legs and arms twisted in a completely wrong direction.

I both love and hate India. The country made me cry at least once a day. Wonderful but then suddenly ruthless and brutal impressions will make you smile in one moment and in the moment after – cry.

“Expat” Catherine Taylorin had a good description of his stay in India in the newspaper “The Australian” some years ago:

I needed something new, exciting, thrilling, terrifying. And India gave that to me in spades. In fact, she turned it all the way up to 11. And then she turned it up a little more.  … The closest I have come to answering how it`s like living in India,  is that it’s like being in a very intense, extremely dysfunctional relationship. India and I fight, we scream, we argue, we don’t speak for days on end, but really, deep down, we love each other. She’s a strange beast, this India. She hugs me, so tightly sometimes that I can’t breathe, then she turns and punches me hard in the face, leaving me stunned. Then she hugs me again, and suddenly I know everything will be all right.

In short, I have been among the luckiest of the lucky. She keeps me on my toes, Ms India, and I have been blessed that she let me stay for a while. She welcomed me. And when I leave, because I know I will one day, I will weep, because I will miss her terribly. And because I know she won’t even notice that I am gone.

This is my India.

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