I must say the trip to Hubli, India what the longest trip I’ve ever taking. We left Boston, US on Sunday at 10:20PM and reached over Dubai at 8:30pm. Durning that first flight i didn’t get to sleep much , it was long and I don’t know if it was because of the time difference or just that i was uncomfortable but sleep what not an option. When we reached Dubai we we had to wait about an hour or so to get on another that wait was not that long at all. It was about one and a half hour flight. When we got to Bangalore now that was a wait for our flight got delayed for about 5 hours, we reached about 3am in the morning and had to wait until 12 to get start getting on broad, we did not reach Hubli until almost 4pm. But reaching Hubli was worth the long long long trip. When we reach the BVB kids were great, really help full and extremely nice. Looking around it honestly did not hit me that i was actually in INDIA. It really amazing how similar India was to my home country (Cape Verde). I was actually really worried about coming and not being in able to adjust but i did just fine. And i excited to the see India and do some shopping, the next coupe of days will be GREAT!
On December 31st, we got the opportunity to meet Gaurav Sha an entrepreneur that actual graduated from BVB. He is the created of Seven Beans, which is a coffee chain shop in India. During his presentation he talked about how and what he did to become a successful business owner, in six great steps. First one was “Ignore the real world”, which meant not to let others put you down, and go with your guts. In the world there will always be people other doubting in you in some way or form just because they are it does not mean you should do that you think within yourself is right and what your actually passionate about . Second is to “make meaning” meaning don’t go by just focusing on making money or you will attract the wrong people, which would end up in bad decision making. Third “Get going! and Keep going” for instance if you have an idea or vision don’t wait to last minute the time is now if your interested in something get it done now. The longer the wait no the more time you will waste. Also keep in mind that quitting is not an option. Forth was “Define a business model” which he described as you should and must have a game plan , one why or other. Fifth “scratch your on itch” meaning to fix your own problems, for example if theres something thats not all that great and means improvement try and improve it yourself, and make it your own. And last but not least is to “Think 10X” if you have any idea about anything you vision and effort should be multiple by 10. I also asked him if he was thinking about franchising and the fact that he said that the next store that they will be opening might be franchise is really excited.
Im truly grateful for having the opportunity to meet him and receive nothing but great advice.
Prior to leaving for India, I felt a number of different emotions ranging from excitement, nervousness, curiosity, hesitation and fear of the unknown. After meeting with the rest of our group and speaking with those who have participated in the trip from previous years, many of my worries were quickly relieved, as everyone seemed to hold the same feelings before they left and they swiftly went away.
Additionally, upon boarding our first flight from Boston to Dubai, and finding out that I was upgraded to Business Class, my anxiety levels quickly went out the window, as it was one of the smoothest and enjoyable flights I have ever been on. I was handed a glass of champagne fifteen seconds after sitting down, a bowl of warm nuts, a warm towel, and they even handed out mattresses to put on your chair to make falling asleep that much easier. I am not sure how I lucked out so much but I found out I wasn’t the only one. A few of us going on the trip were upgrading including the girl sitting next to me headed to Swaziland. After starting a conversation with the other lady sitting to my left, I found out that she is a student from MIT traveling to a workshop related to start-ups. We exchanged our information and since she is very familiar with Hubli and the surrounding areas, was excited to let me know which sites and restaurants to visit. This encounter was very welcoming as I could begin to sense the hospitality that everyone has for the guests in their country. Seeing that my voyage to the other side of the world was so pleasant and enjoyable, it only made sense to me that this is going to be a trip and experience that I will never forget.
During the first day of class instead of breaking for lunch and heading back to the dorms for a short break one of the Indian students was attending a family wedding. The family wanted the students from the US and China to experience a traditional Hindu wedding. After our first part of class we took two yellow buses into Hubli and attended the wedding. First we went into what would have been the chapel to see the bride and groom. We all were asked to take a handful of flowers that were in a giant bowl and we waited in line to take a picture with the newly wed. Once we arrived at the end of the line we took a picture with the bride and groom but not before we covered them with the flower petals we took earlier. After the photo we went downstairs to where the food was being served. We all ate with the family and friends attending the wedding and were socializing with all of the locals. Seeing a tradition wedding in Indian is a once in a lifetime deal for a foreigner and I am extremely grateful that I was able to experience that.
I arrived at Logan Airport on the 27th of December with my father who wanted to see me off and wish me safe travels. As I got closer to the security gate my emotions were running wild. I wanted to scream, laugh, and cry at the same time. My dad said reassuring words and off I went to travel to Dubai, UAE. The flight was twice as long as any flight I have ever been on. I started walking down the tunnel to the plane and by now the emotions I was feeling earlier were tenfold, I said a quick prayer and off we went over the Atlantic. 12 hours later were landed in Dubai, after a short layover it was off to India. Once we arrived in India the journey took a turn, our flight was delayed for 7 hours so we found ways to entertain ourselves. All of the students from UML are very nice and easy going. Once the layover was complete we flew to Hubli, where our final destination is, and started orientation at the school with all of the students participating in the course. The students from China are extremely nice and have made friends with them already. Looking forward to making more connections with all the students on this adventure abroad.
We have good start up today. I like the Tea served in claypot cup. The taste was yummy. We went to Kulkarni Lecture Hall 101 at 9:00 pm. We have nice white T-Shirt distribution with difference Makers logo at the front and KLE Technical University and MSB at the back. Prof Mehta gave us in-depth knowledge on Entrepreneurial concept.
Suddenly we came to know we have been invited for one of our KLE participant’s sisters marriage. We went as a group during our lunch break. It was an awesome experience of typical traditional South Indian Hindu Marriage. We have given flowers in our hand to wish newly married Bride & Grooms. There was some mantras enchanting. At the end of it, everyone threw the flower towards the new couple. Then we were in long procession queue to go to the stage to wish the Bride & groom in person as well as we were lock down into their Video and Photography images. We went for Traditional marriage occasion’s lunch. We have been served with chapatti, rice, vegetables curries, “golab jamun”, “balusai” sweets and very famous and delicious butter milk. There was lots of woman wore traditional sarees and gold made jewelry.
After come back to class, we have been allocated into particular projects with mix of Chinese and KLE different streams students. We have been assigned one presentation task on a daily commodity problem and resolution as well as about project team dynamics. I have fresh sugarcane juice and Coconut water with KLE students, which is incredible in the sense; I never found that in USA.
At last the final day came on Dec 27, 2015.I had already packed the bag and was ready to fly. I had all the check in process at Boston Logan International Airport on time.We stated from Boston for Dubai at 10:20 pm EST. This is very long journey like almost 13 hours. We have reached Dubai on time at 7:25 pm Local Dubai time on Dec 28, 2015. Our next flight was at 9:30 pm from Dubai to Bangaluru and we have landed in India little early like at 2:30 am Early morning on Dec 29, 2015. We are little messy due to 5 hours flight delay. We have good Indian food at Daily Airport Hotel as team. We have relaxed and having lots of fun. We have boarded into our local domestic flight on 12:20 pm and reached at Hubli at 1:40 pm.
It was an amazing experience that group of KLE student was waiting for us and welcomed us with tricolor garland of Indian National Flags color with wining “Tilak”. This is for information: Orange color stands for courage and sacrifice, white stands for peace and green stands for Harvesting. This kind of vive really touched my heart with full of joy and enthusiasm to mingle with local students. We came by bus to Hubli KLE campus. It was 60 acres area with well-organized infrastructure. We have been allocated room into KLE guesthouse with local students accepted for this program along with Chinese students. My roommate is one Chinese student named Haow. He gifted me one hanging Chinese knot which can bring me good luck. We have kick off meeting at 5:30 pm. Prof. Nitin K and Prof Mehta gave spell bound speech on background and Enormous positive experiences of last 4 sessions and their expectations about this 5th Student Exchange Program. It was wind up at 6:00 pm and we had delicious Indian dish at Dinner making the end the day.
After long travels, we rested up and were ready to go to class.It was a good lecture Professor Mehta kept it short and interesting until in the middle of it,when they decided that we should go crash an Indian wedding.It was super cool they had nice Sari’s on and we all had to go up to the bride and groom, shake their hands and wish the a happy long marriage.My friend Bruna and I met this laid back Indian ladies that went to keep taking pictures with us.
Today we had the opportunity to attend a beautiful wedding, A traditional Indian wedding, it was very lively colorful and full of people. The bride and groom alone lite up the room. The bride was looking especially gorgeous, she was wearing her bright wedding dress which they call SAREE, she also had traditional Henna. On the bride i also noticed that the tip of her fingers were black, which i came to learn that the darker the Henna on the tip of the finder the more the groom loved the bride which i thought was very interesting. The food was amazing, tried new things which i love doing. Ive also noticed and was told that anyone can come to the wedding people come enjoy the celebration, music and the food of course.
It was AMAZING!
No. I am not only typing this blog post because it is extra credit.
We stated the day off going to class in the LHC 101 building here at BVB college. I thought we were going to blistering to lectures all day, but we had chai breaks in between classes which I definitely think every school in America should implement. Then we went to an indian wedding during our lunch break. It was not only extremely random but it was an amazing experience that I can gladly say I have crossed off my bucket list. The wedding was so colorful; from red to orange to yellow to pink. It was absolutely beautiful. It was a great and joyful celebrations filled with elders to babies dressed up in traditional indian clothing. On top of that we were fed a variety of delicious indian food. After crying from how spicy the food was, I washed it down with the gulab jamun, a small and sweet donut-like pastry. I can honestly say this small little treat is my new favorite dessert.
My awesome roommate Christine and I posing with some of the bridal party.
So like I said before, thats one more thing off my bucket list for this trip!!