Wednesday January 6
More explination on my travels in India as well as the great site visits and activities we were able to see and do!
I will give a brief overview of each of the days and also a few side notes that I feel viewers would like to know!
Wednesday January 6-
On Wednesday we had a very, very interesting day and also quite unexpected events! We started our day out by eating our usual complimentary breakfast in the hotel's restuarant. They actually have 3 restaurants, this hotel is pretty high class. It is considered a 4 star hotel, so for all of my family, friends and classmates following this blog- Carlson treats you well!! It is a very great hotel, the first night we got back all of our clothes that were laying around were folded as well as our bathroom items were neatly arranged. In the breakfast area-it is pretty fun as we have sort-of "claimed" the 9th floor restaurant as "ours" and they seem to know what eggs I am going to order before I even get there!
Another great thing about India is the tea! I was never a tea drinker in the US but now I think I have about 3-4 cups a day (yes I know it probably isn't the best for me!) The problem is though that they serve it at every meal as well as at every site visit and we all just can't pass it up! Along with drinks, most of their soda is in glass bottled water. And it is not clean bottles at all. They reuse the bottles and doesn't look like they clean it very much, cans are a much better way to go! As for the food, I am not a fan although I thought I might be. My favorite so far has been American-Indian food and nan-which is a common Indian bread that is delicious! However, American food is not uncommon whatsoever and seems to be served at most of the restaurants we go to.
This brings me to my next point of language barrier. There does not seem to be one at all here! Honestly I have only learned a few words but have never come to the situation where I would need to use it! Everyone here (even though they said the American speaking rate is only about 10 percent) seems to speak English. So maybe we just have not come across the right area yet that only speaks Hindi or more and more Indians are being educated this way (as most schools are taught in English).
Back to Wednesday's schedule...We started the morning by traveling to QAI which I believe stands for Quality Assurance Incorporated.the speaker there was very interesting and we had a session where we were able to mainly do a question-answer session and not a lecture which we have seen at the past site visits.
We then walked to a local eating place where half of the group got Subway and the other half ate at Ruby Tuesdays. We all seemed to enjoy the food. You have to take into consideration that they do not serve meat (besides chicken and sometimes lamb) at these places so most of us are eating vegetarian meals and Indian based meals because there is no other choice. It is agaist the Hindu religion to kill a cow/pig so instead these animals are roaming the street sides in the middle of the city-unbeliveable site to see!
After eating, we took the bus to the Indian eGovernment Services office-this is where the unexpected event happens! At the eGovernment we learned about these Kiosks full of computers they are putting up mainly in rural areas to allow citizens access to getting government documents, getting trained in computers to be more illiterate as well as just to surf the internet. It is a very interesting concept that they have established and seems to be working wonderfully! Government officials are very dedicated to their country and expanding their services to the locals. If you are interested in more details..let me know!!
After they gave their speach, we found out that more officials that walked into the room were basically a BIG DEAL. A few of them were VERY high up. I believe they are called ministers and we met the 2nd in command only to the prime minister. UNREAL! However we did not get a picture taken :(
Afterwards we came back, talked to some locals to find good places to eat and maybe go out. We ended up just hanging out in a few of the hotel rooms and bonded. I think the atmosphere of the group and the relationships made have been wonderful. It is a very nice small group where everyone seems to get along and enjoy the company. I am learning more and more about each person everyday and I know for a fact I will make 11 new good friends by the time we leave and we will all hang out when we get back!!
This is all I can blog for now as we are currently in Hyderabad-which I will write more about later I have quite a few days to catch up on! We are going to get dinner so hopefully it is not something too spicy!