*Bangladesh, the End.
This is it. My amazing 3 months experience in Dhaka is coming to an end…
It feels like I got off the plane yesterday and that that I’ve been here for years.
It’s strange how new habits settle in, how one adapts to a foreign environment and recreates a safe haven.
Things that seemed really complicated a few weeks ago (such as crossing the street with on coming traffic) have now become part of daily life and I don’t even think about them anymore.
I love the awareness that being in a completely unfamiliar place brings. When all my senses are alert, and I’m 100% in the present moment. My mind is way too focused on what’s going on to be distracted by any side thoughts… then little by little habits kick in and “first times” are repeated day after day… allowing for other details to be noticed and appreciated.
I was trying to summarize my time in Bangladesh, this is what comes to mind:
The most unexpected: so much garbage everywhere.
What I miss the most: being able to walk everywhere
The most Intriguing: when and where the men pray. I never seem to notice when they leave from their desk during the day.
What amazes me: the trucks! (And the few numbers of accidents considering the crazy traffic and driving)
The most Surprising: most marriages are still arranged.
The most Chocking: labour conditions
The most Frustrating: being assisted in everything I do.
The funniest: misunderstandings from the language difference
The Hardest: the cultural differences in time & priority management (at work) / the humidity (in general)
The easiest: the food (if you like rice and don’t mind spicy food). (But I do really miss a big fresh salad! And Cheese!)
The most Nerve racking: the constant honking
The best: everyone’s kindness and helpfulness
The happiest: when I pick up on words and understand what people are talking about.
The most disappointing: i didn’t find a yoga class that matched my schedule. But I discovered “yoga with Adriene” on tube. And I absolutely love her.
What I Love: the fact that everything is completely different and that I learned so much (professionally & personnally) + the mangoes of course.
What I am the moste Thankful for: my roommates !!! I do believe that wherever you are, the people you are with make up for a huge amount of your well being. And I can say that my time here would have been much harder if i hadn’t had such great roommates.
Other random thoughts
– I don’t hear much music
– The smell hasn’t shocked me. It doesn’t smell particularly good on the streets (spices, incense, food cooking…) but it doesn’t usually smell bad either
– This country loves taking selfies
– The rainy season makes things a bit more complicated as roads flood quickly. (It took me over 3 hours to cover 12km and get home one evening)
– I was expecting to see more poverty and misery. Of course the country is poor and a huge part of the population in below the poverty line… but resilience seems stronger than sadness or suffering. Or maybe I’ve protected myself so it wouldn’t be emotionally hard.. I don’t know.