The Hike to Hyderabad India: The Travels of Audrey Rattay

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"India is the cradle of the human race, the birthplace of human speech, the mother of history, the grandmother of legend, and the great grandmother of tradition. ...nothing has been left undone, either by man or nature, to make India the most extraordinary country that the sun visits on his rounds." ~Mark Twain, American writer and journalist

After returning from my journey to Morocco, it was hard for me to sink back into my repetitive lifestyle of school and work. Experiencing such a different world, way of life and outlook took a toll on me. I was thirsty; thirsty for something with meaning and substance. I knew what I had to do and it was up to me to make it happen.

My choice to visit India was due to a mixture of different signs that I have witnessed stretching from my childhood to current day. My first sign presented itself when I was around the age of seven. During a trip to the store, I put a quarter into the keychain machine and floating around in the plastic ball was an elephant made out of stone. At this age, I passed it along as just a cute keychain with no prior history or meaning to where it would take me. My second clue came from the movie Eat, Pray Love (quite an inspirational film and book which I highly recommend). The serenity and peacefulness of finding ones self that author Elizabeth Gilbert portrayed while in India was much to be envious about. Deep inside I have longed to find myself spiritually and emotionally. The guides linking my inner struggles to the path of India have crossed through Eat, Pray, Love and I knew at that moment, India was my next destination.

After setting my hopes to study in India, I took the necessary steps towards turning my feelings into reality. When visiting home to discuss my upcoming planning, I was cleaning my closet and found the final sign that I needed. The push that meant so much to me and forced me to follow my gut; Nestled in a box that has not been opened in many years was my elephant keychain. A novelty so minute, that meant so little, suddenly changed my life.

Throughout the course of the spring months, I had plenty of meetings with financial aid, the records office, and my study abroad advisor to establish what my plan would be. After being accepted into the International Studies Abroad - Fall 2012 Hyderabad semester, I knew that what I was embarking on was pure fate.

Fate is a word that many people overlook and confuse with coincidence. Fate is what we as humans live for. We work hard, we set goals and take any step necessary to make our lives more enjoyable but what it comes down to is that we as humans know that in the end, what happens is out of our own control and reach - it is fate.

My trip to India is fate not only for me but also for the people around me, in the United States and soon to be in India. I am opening doors for people to see that traveling to such a poverty stricken and over populated country holds deeper truths and enriched history than what the media reports. It takes a strong willed person to be able to travel outside of his or her comfort zone and reach out to those who simply need to feel love and purpose for living. During my travels, I hope to open up my arms to many people and enlighten them - give them the extra push they need to succeed and follow their dreams while I am following my own.

To be honest, I do have many dreams, some of which may be out of my own reach but nonetheless, I can only work towards them in hopes that one day, another person will be able to fulfill it. Why not have unreachable dreams? At least it makes you work harder and allows you to not settle for the little dreams.

Indeed, this section may be a little sporadic but that just shows that I have a lot to say, a lot to discover about myself, and a lot to share with you. I hope that you will enjoy the upcoming months, the numerous blogs and photographs, and will let the colors of India shower you.


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  • How to follow my footsteps:
  • My last day in India
Trip Start Jul 12, 2012
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Trip End Dec 01, 2012


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