First Day in Hubli

Beginning in Boston, I was unsure of what to expect from such a long flight. To my surprise, however, I slept through almost the whole thing, staying awake only for the free meal. The hour layover in Doha, felt very short and soon enough I was back to sleep on the plane again. We arrived to India in the early morning hours, only to wait my next flight which was 6 hours away, The Bangalore airport made the waiting process much easier, I ordered my first meal in India and browsed the many shops there. When the third flight finally came around it only took 45 minutes to land in Hubli.
We walked off the open plane in the warm air and caught a bus to the university. The bus ride was a whirlwind of excitement. Both the American and Chinese students were together and were in awe of the streets of Hubli, the commotion an activity going on in the streets was so much to take in. I had no idea I would have so much fun just in the first thirty minutes of arriving. Once we arrived we were greeted by the Indian students and given a Indian flag necklace and a Bindi mark. After we were assigned our rooms we went outside to explore.
At one point, we heard crowds of people screaming and music playing so of course we wanted to find the source of it and go there. After searching for at least 10 minutes, we saw people who were dressed very nicely walking into a gate, it looked like there was a wedding going on. We went up to the gate, but right when the guard there was not going to let us go, a girl from inside walked up and asked where we were from. When we told her we were students studying at KLE, she said she would see if she could get us in and brought two students with her. I waited outside with two others until she came back to the gate and let us know we were allowed in and brought us through. She had mentioned it was a culture festival so I figured it would be a good amount of people. We walked in and suddenly HUNDREDS of faces turned and watched us get escorted to the front row. I was in such shock, I turned around after I sat down in front of the stage and saw a sea of people. The event consisted of young men and women wearing traditional wedding clothing from the different states of India. I loved seeing the diverse styles and colors. At the end of the show, when we were getting ready to head off to orientation, the chancellor walked up to the stage and used the microphone to call us each up to the stage and introduce us to the crowd. As we were standing there he suddenly added on that we had a “gift for them”. I turned to the other students confused as to what he was talking about when “Moves like Jagger” started playing. Our gift to them was our dance. So, sure enough we just improvised and did whatever would make the crowd cheer. As we jogged back to the Scholar House to make it to orientation on time, I was on such an adrenaline rush. If this is what my first day in Hubli was like, I can’t wait to see what the next few weeks will bring.