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Clichés about India

Questions People From India Are Sick Of Answering: 

1.     “What caste are you?” 

I have chosen to CASTE aside antiquated means of social stratification. 

NB from IndianSamourai: About the castes: post


2.      “How come your English is so good?” 

I’m from the country with the second-largest English-speaking population in the world. You? 

NB from IndianSamourai:Ok but English is a fluently spoken by less than 10% of the population! 


3.      “So, do you speak Hindu?” 

Yup, fluently. And I can say a couple of things in Muslim and Christian too. 

NB from IndianSamourai:Hindu is a religion, Hindi is a language (spoken by about half of the population, though it is the official language).   


4.      “Do people in India really sing and dance all the time like in Bollywood movies?” 

Totally. Just like people in America constantly get attacked by extraterrestrial forces of evil and then saved by leagues of superheroes. 


5.      “Will you get to ride an elephant at your wedding?” 

Can’t make any promises, but an elephant is pretty likely to be involved, yes. 

NB from IndianSamourai:Elephants actually still happen… Though horses are more common and now luxury cars. 


6.     “Cricket is just like…a lame version of baseball…right?” 

APOLOGIZE, TAKE IT BACK, AND NOBODY GETS HURT. This is a really wicket thing to say. 


7.     “Will you pleeeease cook me Indian food?” 

Nope, I will be doing absolutely naan of that. 

NB from IndianSamourai: Naan is a bread commonly used to pick up the food and it sounds like “none” with the Indian accent. 


8.     “Why would anyone get an arranged marriage?” 

Because it’s basically just the original OkCupid. Anything’s easier than dating, amirite? 

NB from IndianSamourai: A post coming on this topic soon! 


9.     “Do you ever get sick of curry?” 

Literally no. Primarily because a couple of other foods are also available to me. I do appreciate your curryosity, though. 


10.   “Can you teach me yoga?” 

I mean…I can try…but you’re probably better off, like…asking someone who knows yoga… 

NB from IndianSamourai: Yoga is not actually so commonly practiced in India; it has picked up lately in the metros after it became trendy in the West.  


11.   “And what’s that other holiday where you throw the colors? I love that one.” 

HOLI shit, you dumb. 

NB from IndianSamourai: Holi is a festival in March when people throw colours at each other. 


12.   “How come India is in Asia but you aren’t Asian?” 

Stfu, man. South Asians are Asians too. 


13.   “Are you Arab?” 

When’s your birthday? I know what I’m getting you. 


14.   “I’ve heard it smells awful. Does it smell awful?” 

You smell awful. And racist. You smell racist. 

NB from IndianSamourai: I have to say, you encounter many “funny” smells… 


15.   “Everyone basically does tech support, yeah?” 

Yup, 1 billion people, all day every day, answering phone calls from America. 


16.   “Do you only eat spicy food?” 

Ya, all my taste buds were singed off at birth so now I can’t taste food unless it’s doused in hot sauce. So glad someone understands.


17.   “Are you ALL vegetarian?”

 NB from IndianSamourai: See: post 


18.   “But you actually do pray to cows, right?” 

I’m praying to a cow right now, asking that you leave me alone. Moooove, bitch. 

NB from IndianSamourai: Ok but they DO worship cows!! See: post 


19.   “Why do you need sooo many gods?” 

They give me the patience and spiritual fortitude to keep from punching ignorant people. 


20.   “Hey, can you help me with this math?” 

I don’t even know enough math to count all the racist assumptions you’ve made today. 


21.   “Omg I love saris! Can you teach me how to tie a sari?” 

Yeeees! After that, let’s paint our nails and give each other bindis and do each other’s hair and stay up all night talking about cultural appropriation! 

NB from IndianSamourai: I was asked by my French dentist whether I was going to work in a sari so I guess it is a justified question. Let’s say that in “corporate” India women don’t really wear saris anymore though they still wear often salwar-kameez (a tunique with some kind of leggings or loose pants). 


22.   “No offense, but like…what’s the third world like?” IMG_0387.JPG

I rode an elephant to school every day and Mowgli was my classmate. 


23.   “Have you ever ridden on top of a train?” 

Only when my elephant was broken and my camel was at the garage. 


24.   “It’s basically just like Slumdog Millionaire, right?” 





50 less traveled places to discover India!

A nice article came up on (PDF version) with 50 places to visit in India – in “less travelled” places. I am half the way down the list and got good new ideas for next year trips (in bold)!!

1.     Camping in The Arid Desert of Rajasthan

2.     Eat at Chokhi Dhani and Take an Elephant Safari in Jaipur (Rajasthan) – Done!

3.     Rajasthan Trip on Bullet bike

4.     Jodhpur to Jaisalmer on Truck/Tractor trip (Rajasthan)

5.     Experience Sunburn in Goa – Done!

6.     Trek to Markha Valley (Ladakh) – Done!

7.     Experience Rann of Kutch and Gir Forest (Gujarat) – Done!

8.     Boat Trip to Andaman & Scuba diving – Done!

9.     Sikkim Sightseeing Trip – Done!

10.   Kolkata Trip – Done!

11.   Sunderbans Boat Ride (West Bengal) – Done!

12.   Munnar, Periyar and Thekkady wildlife Trip (Kerala)

13.   Rafting and Camping in Rishikesh – Done!

14.   Orissa Konark Temple – Done!

15.   Go to Gokarna and Do Nothing (Karnataka) – Done!

16.   Visit Coorg, Scotland of India (Karnataka) – Done!

17.   Visit Temples and Boulders at Hampi (Karnataka) – Done!

18.   Dasara in Mysore (Karnataka) – Done! 

19.   Experience Local Trains, Mumbai – Done! 

20.   Visit Varanasi to Experience Chaos (Uttar Pradesh) – Done! 

21.   Yak Safari in Ladakh – Done! 

22.   Wildlife Adventure Trip at Corbett (Uttarakhand) or tiger spotting in Kanha (Madhya Pradesh) – Done! 

23.   Travel in a Toy Train (Darjeeling, Matheran, Ooty and Shimla) – Done! 

24.   Spiti Valley Trip (Himachal Pradesh) – Done! 

25.   Dhuandhar Falls, Jabalpur (Madhya Pradesh) 

26.   Sandakphu Trek (West Bengal) 

27.   Trek to Dudhsagar Falls (Goa) 

28.   Experience Konkan Railways (Maharashtra to Goa) 

29.   Bombay to Goa road Trips 

30.   Vaishno Devi Temple (Jammu and Kashmir) 

31.   Roopkund Trek, Himalayas 

32.   Trek to Kudremukh (Karnataka) 

33.   Drive Through Forest of Bandipur (Karnataka) 

34.   Trek to Valley of Flowers (Uttarakhand) – between mid-July and mid-August 

35.   Skiing in Auli (Uttarakhand) or Gulmarg (Jammu) 

36.   Paragliding in Solang (Himachal Pradesh) 

37.   Visit Golden Temple in Amritsar & Wagah Border (Amritsar, Punjab)  

38.   Cycling in Nilgiris, Ooty (Tamil Nadu) – Done! With blue flowers that blossom every 12 years (August-September 2014 in Munnar (Kerala)!) 

39.   Backpack Across Northeast & Visit Cherrapunji, Tread on Living Root Bridges (Meghalaya) 

40.   Manali to Leh on Bike 

41.   Srinagar to Leh Bus/Truck Ride 

42.   Holi at Vrindavan (Uttar Pradesh) 


My additions: 


43.   Road trip in Maheshwar region (Madhya Pradesh) – Done! 

44.   Kumbha Mela in Haridwar (Uttarakhand) or any of the other 3 holy places – Done! 

45.   Elephant Safari in Kaziranga national park (with Rhinoceros) and trip to Majuli islands (Assam) – Done! 

46.   Helicopter ride from Gangtok (Sikkim) to Bagdogra Airport (West Bengal) – Done! 

47.   Visit a haveli in Shekhawati region (Rajasthan) – Done! 

48.   Houseboat on Dal Lake (Srinagar, Jammu)  

49.   Trek and stay in Shakti Lekti 360 (Kumaon village, Uttarakhand) 

50.   Hot air ballooning in Pushkar during the camel fair (Rajasthan) in November 


Bonus: rat temple (Karni Mata near Bikaner, Rajasthan) (done!); snake temple (Mannarasala, Kerala). 


My photos: here and there and also there. 


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India market in a few figures

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