Monday, May 4, 2009

India to Europe

When we landed in Istanbul both Steve and I experienced a little bit of shock. The streets were very clean and there was grass, trees and flowers everywhere. It made me feel very relaxed.

I've always believed (or hoped) that I am capable of adapting to new environments and giving up creature comforts. I've never wanted to be dependent on expensive things to be happy. When Steve and I were in India we were comfortable with our hotel accomodations, even though they were usually less comfortable then we were used to (e.g. the worst ones had a good amount of mold in the bathrooms, chipping paint or dirty walls, no top bed sheet, bugs, etc.). We got used to the wind constantly blowing dirt into our face, or dodging feces on the street. I am not saying we would have easily adapted to the lifestyle most poor Indians live - the things I describe are minor compared to the accomodations or neighborhoods they live in. But we went without a lot of our standard luxuries for 4 weeks and it was okay.

Every once in awhile a gust of wind would blow dirt in my face and it would make me feel slightly depressed that I constantly felt a little dirty. In Istanbul, the clean, green surroundings gave me a rush of pleasure. I think Steve and I can adapt to many different standards of living. But now I have a little more appreciation for the effect that creature comforts have on me. They give me a rush of happy emotions which is usually unconscious but very beneficial.


  1. The simplest things sometimes turn out to be so important!

  2. What a thoughtful insight. It does make one feel good when one's surroundings are pleasant. Some of it is the physical surroundings, some of it is the familiarity, but I think a lot of it is that one lets down one's guard. In any event, because of the way you've planned this trip, you've challenged yourself to think about a variety of things in a whole new way.