It was day one and all I remember is staring out the dust-blanketed bus window with my eyes wide open and my jaw dropped in awe at the world around me flashing by- a world so foreign I had no words for it and even still, two months after the fact, sometimes I sit up late at night with a pen poised over an empty page and come up completely blank. My head won’t let me wrap itself around you, India, no matter how hard or how frequently I try. But I need it to. And I need it to soon.
I thought I knew what I was in for, but I’ve never before been so absolutely wrong. I guess I had no idea about the magnitude of.. You. Your situation, your people, your way of being run. Your havoc, but at the same time your functionality. Your reluctance to share, but at the same time your matchless generosity. None. It’s like the rug was ripped out from under me the moment the plane landed and I fell right into a pit of hopelessness, confusion, awareness of my ignorance and my inability to have any lasting affect on the world around me. And of course, in true Indian style, that pit of despair was studded with gemstones from ancient times, and splashed with colours so vibrant not even Pantone can sequence them into its catalogue. Like I needed more reasons to be confused.
Your enchantment dragged me in and put me under its spice-infused spell, drugging me into feeling the happiest I’ve ever felt in mortality.. and then it threw me right under that same dust-blanketed bus that introduced me to a part of my mind I’d never before encountered. And you did this to me over and over again. Picked me up and put me down, up and down, over and over. But at the end you threw me so far down that I didn’t have enough time to stand back up. And I’m still there and it’s still dark. And I’m still hurt. But I want to heal.
So please, India: lend me some of your colourful ink for my poised pen and let the words begin to spill across my empty page. I need them and I need this; and I need them and this soon- so I can make room for something new- something hopefully not as terrible.. but hopefully as indescribably wonderful, as You.