So I’m not sleeping well. Not at all. Partly because of weird scheduling and partly because of just not sleeping well. I was up until after 2 last night and then woke up at 6am today pretty naturally. I’m tired now and I’m going to stay up until 630 or 7 and then try to go to bed and get somewhat caught up on rest. My best guess is that I’ve gotten less than 15 hours’ sleep since I left Chicago on Friday. And while I’m still functioning ok at the moment I won’t be for long if this keeps up…the adrenaline from this kind of experience eventually runs out and I’ll crash, and I’d prefer it not happen at an inconvenient time.
Today we visited the Parle factory outside Delhi. It took nearly an hour to cross Delhi from our hotel to the outskirts and then that much again to get to the factory. We did a case study on the Parle-G biscuit product in class, and so it was fun to get to see part of their operation. Parle is based in Mumbai, but this is their largest facility, employing over 1000 workers at this location. We got a tour of the facility and they treated us to a fantastic Indian lunch (vegetarian).
Because it was a one-stop day and because I want to get some rest this is a shorter post, and here’s my three interesting things for Tuesday:
- I didn’t get a picture (was too quick) but I saw a street sweeper. It wasn’t the mechanical type we have in Peoria but a man, with a typical house broom like we use to sweep the floor at my house, sweeping the street.
- I saw a car with a broken tail light, and instead of using duct tape to fix it, it was held together with packing tape from DHL. Imagine how it would look in the USA if a car was patched with tape from the post office or FedEx.
- There were men working on a scaffolding made of what appeared to be driftwood. Looked like it was about to fall apart. Learned later that they use bamboo for scaffolds over here and that it apparently is as strong as steel and more pliable so it ‘s safer. Weird thought for me.
Bonus thing (and the one that left the biggest impression):
On the way out of town while we were stuck in traffic some young girls (like 5-8 years old…the ages of my daughters Margary and Clara) came up on the side of the bus (not the side closest to the edge of the street) begging for food. I had some “emergency” protein bars in my bag and someone else had a bag of peanuts. It ended up that there was not quite enough for one per girl and it was saddening to me that we couldn’t do more. If we had given them money it would have been taken by an adult, and what I gave them was from my excess…it cost me nothing really. I brought extra food from the U.S. to eat if the food wasn’t agreeing with me here. One girl didn’t get anything and I’m not sure if her compatriots shared anything because we then drove away and I’ll never see them again.
I’ll be praying for those girls, and others like them.
Tomorrow is our last morning in Delhi and in the afternoon we fly to Chennai. The trip is whizzing by, which is nice, but I haven’t had enough time to really absorb the experience fully…it will be quite an adjustment when I return to the states.