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Joseph in India

Procrastination, Meet Voluntourism

Wow. I really am an absolutely terrible blogger. So much has happened since my last post and you guys don’t know any of it! I almost finished this post as a procrastination measure while I was writing my final papers for class but even that I could not finish. It’s a shame. At any rate, I’m finished with school now! I finished right at the beginning of May and I have been traveling since May 2nd. I want to talk more about that and my travels but first, I want […]

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Mother Tongue

I heard that my blog was featured on the Study Abroad’s website and weekly email. Not only is that pretty neat, but it probably means that I am due for another post. The inspiration for this post comes partially from an experience that I had today and partially also from Amy Tan‘s short essay, “Mother Tongue.” This came up because, today, I went with my boss and my coworkers to a gathering of youth in a particular neighborhood. This was the second of such gatherings I had been to and, […]

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The Curious Thing About Blogging

I am a social media fiend. Like many people my age (and a surprising amount of those older than us), I spend a significant of my time on Facebook. I have a Twitter that I am tweeting on with increasing frequency. I do not hesitate to snap a picture and immediately post it to Instagram. I even have a Tumblr blog, where, thanks to relative anonymity, I am able to pull back my online presence a couple layers and display a deeper version of myself not provided by my other […]

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My First Field Visit

Hello Friends, Yesterday, I had my first official day of my internship with the National Muslim Women Welfare Society. Needless to say, I have a lot on my mind after the first day and desperately want to talk/write more about it. However, we dove right into things with a “field visit” to a Muslim slum. I was asked to write a report of my visit and my observations and I figured that it would also make a great blog post. So here goes! On 25 March 2014, I had the […]

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Nandan Nilekani, Victim Blaming, and Other Thoughts

So every night, John (my roommate) and I spend about two hours watching Indian news with Papa-Ji, the grandfather and patriarch of the family that we live with. It is usually a mix of Hindi and English and we actually get a pretty good opportunity to find out what is going on in Indian policies. It is especially interesting to both of us because, as you may or may not know, the general elections will be held in May. Tonight, we got an opportunity to see a town hall with […]

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We Stand on the Edge of a Cliff

We stand on the edge of a cliff
In the deepest night I’ve ever seen.
People looking for light,
People who cherish a dream. Of course, I had to include a picture that I took from the edge of an actual cliff this weekend. Above, I have quoted one of my favorite songs, “Low to the Ground” by Libby Roderick. It’s sung at the end of every session at Camp Warren, where I have worked in August of the past two years. Though I often times look at this song as a commandment […]

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A Brief Update…

Hi friends, So I am still alive, contrary to what my posting habits would suggest. I’m actually just really bad at writing my thoughts down. I have multiple draft posts half written but either I get interrupted or I loose steam and fail to finish the post. Lots has happened since my last post. I have been away from Jaipur nearly every weekend. We have been to Agra (as I posted about), but also Jaiselmer and the desert, Ajmer/Pushkar to see the temples, and last weekend we went to a […]

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It’s a Zou Out There

I’m afraid that much of this post will not be about India but rather something that has been on my mind over the past 12 hours or so. You may or may not have heard of Michael Sam, the defensive end for Mizzou and this year’s SEC Defensive Player of the Year. On Sunday, he also became the most prominent college football player to announce that he was gay. He did this before the draft for next season (in which he was previously ranked between the 3rd and 7th rounds) […]

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Facts, Figure, Numbers and Statistics

Wowwww… I swear I’m committed to writing this blog… Lots to write. First of all, I would like to give a shout out to my Grandma Nancy in Duluth. I have received word that she has been really appreciating my posts. She has been in and out of the hospital and I really regret that I cannot be there to spend some time with her (though I know she is loving everything I am doing). She has been having my various (very diligent) family members read her the posts and […]

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I’m a Bad Blogger

I’m sorry to have been so delayed in my posting. As you might imagine, this past week has been a whirlwind and I find that coming up with exactly how I want to title a post is such a challenge. Moreover, finding exactly what I want to talk about is even more difficult. Of course, there is so much that I can talk about – so many experiences to draw from, especially now that I am in Jaipur. I must apologize for this post as I have to summarize a […]

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Denial: Version 1.0

Alright. So I’m a little bit in denial about the fact that I leave Nashik tomorrow. It’s amazing how much of yourself you can spread around a place in just seven days. It, too, is amazing how close you can grow to people in those same seven days. As I round up my belongings from around the house, I am realizing how amazing it is to have the opportunity to become part of another family, thousands of miles away from your own, and feel comfortable enough around them to do […]

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Overcome

As I write this, I’m a little overcome with emotion. I’ve been reading this book, Let the Great World Spin, by Colum McCann. I’ve been reading it for quite some time. It’s rapidly become one of my favorite books. Each chapter follows a different life from a first person perspective. All of the lives come together in one day in New York City in 1974 as a tightrope walker skips across a wire that he has spanned from the tops of the still-under-construction World Trade Center towers. The book is […]

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Indian Hospitality

I want to talk for a moment about Indian hospitality. It is incredibly generous. Everywhere I go, everyone insists that I have the best. The front seat, the most comfortable chair, the best spot for looking out the window. It’s like the Minnesota Nice on steroids, and I haven’t even mentioned the food, yet. Oh my god, the food. I have been offered SO MUCH FOOD. And it is all so amazing. I truly have not yet had something that I didn’t like, and I’ve said that. I’ve told them […]

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Early to Rise

So Kishor has been telling me that I need to get up early and watch the early morning traffic outside the window. Yesterday, I did indeed wake up early, but I stayed in bed and read my book. This morning, I woke up early again so, here I am, at 6:30am, anticipating an interesting traffic show. The sun is just beginning to come up. It’s very hazy here, though, so you don’t see the sunrise or sunset. In fact, it’s very hazy often. I think a lot of that has […]

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First Full Day, First Full Day, First Full Day, First Full Day!

I hope some of my Camp Warren friends are following this blog so they can get the reference that’s in the title. As it says, it’s the end of the first full day! And what a full day it has been! I’ve successfully made it through my first three meals and I feel good so far! That’s really nice. I also got to experience traffic up close and personal. I will try to take a video from the passenger seat of the car and upload it, because it is really […]

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