By Lucas Masiello
Our trip in India has been filled with the incredible hospitality of the Indian people. On the ride to Akbar’s house, a rickshaw driver and a good friend of Mr. Alter’s, I got very nervous because the area of Delhi we were going to would be considered by Americans to be slum and I didn’t know how people would receive us, but when we got there, I realized that there was nothing to worry about.
We went into Akbar’s house, and his whole family had prepared tea and food for us. A teenager named Sanji who lived across the street from Akbar came over to meet us, and I spent the rest of the day with him. People from all over the neighborhood came to meet us, they took us to a group of houses across the street and we played cricket with a group of teenagers there and took pictures by the water, and were having a very good time. After that, Sanji took me to meet his friends, and they all took us to their houses to meet their families. One of my most memorable memories from the trip so far was standing on the roof of a five-story apartment complex with Sanji’s friends and a muezzin did a call to prayer. The beautiful singing and the view of the entire neighborhood is a memory I will never forget.
We ended the night at an amazing restaurant and many goodbyes from friends and total strangers, and took tuk-tuks to the metro station. All the tuk-tuk drivers were the teenagers we were hanging out with during the day, and we we raced the tuk-tuks through the neighborhood while listening to their Hindi and our American music with each other. The people we met that day are people I will continue to talk to over social media and are people I hope to see again. Don’t judge a book by its cover.