We are immunized for everything under the sun. The visas are worked out. Most of the other paperwork has been taken care of. The kids are registered for school. There is still some packing to do. Two weeks from today, we fly from Frankfurt, Germany to Bangalore India. We’ll be there until June of 2009.
There is a cacophony of feelings that go along with this. I’ve lived in Germany for seven years. In the beginning, that seemed like a big adventure. Seven years later, I can say that western countries are broadly similar. They have a similar standard of living and culture. Sure, they differ in detail, but less than you might think. India is a different story. It is a completely different culture with a mostly Hindu background. It is much, much poorer, but the growth rate is 9%. It is simultaneously exiting and frightening. I don’t speak Italian, but I can muddle around in Italy. All of the “rules” that I know don’t apply in India. It is also exiting. I am looking forward to seeing a Hindu temple. I’ve heard how people have a different sense of time and can happily sit for hours and do nothing. I have to see this for myself. I want to take the kids hiking in the Himalayas. I want to see a tiger and a leopard. I do not want to see a cobra on my lawn. Christmas on the beach in Kerala should be a surreal experience.
As I told my wife, even if we absolutely hate it, it is only for one year and will be the adventure of a lifetime.
Over the next thirteen months, I plan to use this space to write down my thoughts and observations so that I can share them with friends and family. I guess that makes me a blogger now. If I ever blog about blogging, could somebody please shoot me?