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Bangalore India: Last days

Tonight during the taxi ride home I realize for me what is one of the striking differences between life in Bangalore India and the United States of America. In the USA life is about control and separation, in India it seems much harder to achieve the kind of isolation that is the norm in the USA. For example, in the USA almost everywhere you go the air is temperature controlled, humidity controlled, and filtered. Artificial light is everywhere, even when it is not needed like late a night in an empty office building, store, or parking lot. In the USA we go to great effort to isolate our ears from the rest of our environment with sound dampening materials in cars and homes and we isolate our selves physically with expectations about personal boundaries that even extend to our time on the roads; "I can't believe he just cut in to my lane!" My experience in Bangalore India has been that it is almost impossible in a normal day to isolate one's self in the same why that we can in the USA. I believe that this leads to a greater sense of connectedness to your community which is healthy.

The majority of vehicles on the road in Bangalore do not have the sound dampening capability of an inexpensive Honda Civic because most vehicles are either motorbikes or auto rickshaws. When you consider that not only are the majority of the vehicles open air in structure but that all of the vehicles on the road travel with in inches of each other, change lanes abruptly, and even travel in the lane designated for vehicles traveling the opposite direction you can begin to understand what I mean by personal space on the roads in the USA.

Off the roads and in the buildings and shops the experience is similar. Buildings are tightly packed and very close to the street, there is no grass between the street and the buildings. You might say, "well that is just like New York," no quite, because Bangalore almost every building I have seen or been in has gaps in the wall so big that it is easy to see the outside world. Thus, letting in a great deal of the outside environment. There is also very little air conditioning in a general sense: cooling, humidity control, filtering. For example, I'm sitting in my five star hotel right now where I can see more hotel staff than visitors and I'm sweating at 8:20 PM sitting with my laptop typing.

My experience in India has been a continuous string of interesting sights. Trying to bring a part of my experience back to my friends and family in the USA I have been writing text for my web site like the paragraphs above. While I have spent a great deal of effort to try and chose words that would best convey my experiences I have not given much consideration to weather or not my descriptions would be construed as negative. If any of my comments have been interpreted as negative it is a horrible miss communication on my part.

When I was in Sweden Jacob Tell, a native Swede who lived in the USA for several years, told me that his experience in the USA was that during the first month it was difficult to notice anything more than differences between the USA and Sweden, but, in the second month he began to notice the similarities. In both months values are not given to the similarities or difference. I will be in India for less than a month so perhaps I'm stuck in the first month experience of noticing only the differences.

I had a great time in India and am very happy that I had the opportunity to visit such an interesting country. I enjoyed everything about my visit except for the long plane flights. The food was wonderful all of the people I met were very kind, and the weather was great in September.

(September 26, 2004 to October 3, 2004)

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Visiting Banglaore redefined the phrase family vehicle for me. This picture shows three people riding on a motorcycle. However, I saw many motor bikes with 4 people and I was told 5 is also possible. The outdoor pool at the Windsor Manor in Bangalore. Ms. Emlyarn is a member of the Guest Relations Staff at the Windsor Manor Hotel. She told me little about her home state of Nagaland located in Northeastern India. An interesting fact is that Nagaland has 13 languages not including Hindi and English.
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At my desk at the Cypress India Design Center in Bangalore (INDC). The PSoC team for the Radon project at INDC. For my last lunch in Banglore Sunil took me to a restaurant at the top of a tall building. We ate outside. This shot and the next few were all take from our table. I believe the building in the distance is owned by Phillips. There always seems to be building going on every where in Bangalore as you can see in the center of this picture.
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I was told that this is a military field, but, that it doesn't get much use these days. This strip of buildings is on MG Road (Mahatma Gandhi Road). On my last day in Banglore Sunil took me to Formale Ethnic Wear for Men to buy a Kurta. The store is nice in side, however, as this picture shows like many places in Banglore the under-construction space and the active retail space are intermixed.
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In this picture you can see the front windows for the store and the merchandise in side. Here I am with the Kurta I purchased. Me warring my Kurta with Sunil by my side. This was one of the smiling faces that was waiting for me at the Cincinnati International Airport (CVG). This is my nephew Mac.
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My youngest nephew Cole was also waiting for me. Well I'm in Kentucky now, so, lets play basketball. Mac has just stolen the ball from Cole in this picture. Cole makes his jump shot. Look at that form!
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Ariel holds a grasshopper she found in her hands. Ariel and one of her ginnipigs. Cole was excited to show me how he can ride his bike without training wheels.
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From left to right: Nana (my Mom), Ariel, Cole, and Mac. Ariel hiding in a tree. Cole says, wow this is cool take my picture Uncle Eric. Cole posing for a picture with a giant leaf he found.
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The South Fork of Licking River. To get a better understand of how the small town of Falmouth Kentucky was right in the cross hairs of the 1997 flood check out this map of Falmouth. Cole holding a mussel shell in his hand. This is the bridge that allows Hwy 27 to cross the south fork of the licking river. In 1997 flood waters rose above the pavement of this bridge. This is a small dam on the South Fork of the Licking River just west of Hwy 27.
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What do you do when you hanging out in the summer near a body of water? Throw stuff in of course. Splash!

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The pictures in this gallery were taken with a Nikon D70 Digital SLR camera. Any use of these pictures without permission from the photographer is strictly prohibited. Email me to request permission to use any of these pictures or if you would like a higher resolution version.

Last updated: 1/7/05