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December 30th

We arrived at our hotel which was very nice and clean.  The rooms only have one small bed though and we have to share.  This was at 5am when we arrived so everyone went to sleep for a bit.  I was running on adrenaline however and found this difficult.  After a few hours of lying in bed and perhaps sleeping a bit my roomie and I headed down for some breakfast.  It was really good, consisting of some Indian breads and eggs and beans.  The hotel staff is so helpful and nice and served us chai tea and refilled our plates, even when we didn’t necessarily want more. Me and roomie Vince met up with Steve and Will after breakfast and I learned how to play euchre.  At noon the whole group met with Adam, the Assistant Professor, and we ate an amazing meal with chicken, rice, beans, spinach puree and a few other goodies.  After this we went over logistical and cultural topics as well as our project goal and assignments on the rooftop terrace of our hotel.  From there we could look down on a vacant lot where lots of wild pigs were running around.

I guess I should explain what our project is.  In many areas of India and around the world there is the problem of groundwater becoming too salty to use for irrigation or domestic purposes.  So our goal is to develop a model of the spread of saline groundwater in the Mewat District just south of Delhi.  This is a very rural region where the way of life hasn’t changed much in hundreds of years.

We went over a lot of these aspects and then we all went and took some naps before meeting to go to an open air market called Galleria.  This was really neat with lots of shops and restaurants.  There was a crowd of 30 people or so lighting candles and holding signs of protest for the woman who was raped and died in Delhi.  Many little girls were posting signs saying things like “change India for my future” etc.  Although Gurgaon, the city where we are stationed is one of the more affluent cities in India, we saw some real poverty, including a small girl, probably six years old who came to the window of our car begging.  We saw some stray dogs and cats, including a dog with a broken leg, but mostly you see wild pigs running around the streets.  We found a rooftop terrace restaurant and after exchanging some currency, we all sat down and had a toast to being in India.  After returning to the hotel at around 6pm everyone was tired and retired to their rooms.  I did some reading and then went to bed around 8 and slept until 6.

 

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Last modified on September 10th, 2015
Posted on March 31st, 2013