As you read this post, I will hopefully be taking off on an Air India flight for a two week holiday back to India. It has probably been the worst kept secret of all time in our household. My Mum and youngest sister Julie, did not know that I was actually going until I pulled up at check-in with some luggage. The aim of this blog post is to put together my thoughts and feelings prior to my trip. I was last on the sub continent in 2001 and I believe a great deal will have changed in almost a decade. If I am honest, I knew I would have go at some stage or other and putting it off all these years (in place of ski holidays or lads weekends in Germany) does make it slightly harder. I am not sure why. I do not have an identity crisis, as some would perhaps lead you to believe. I just have very liberal views on certain subjects. Many have been formed from my Dad, whom generally does not get these things wrong. However, everything is matter of opinion and personal preference. My view has always been that your loyalties should lie with the country of your birth. My Dad would always add to this that you would play for the England football/cricket/kabaddi/rugby/tiddlywinks/ team and not Indian. I have always agreed. Therefore I have only ever worn the England shirt and refuse to wear any other national shirts (or foreign clubs sides for that matter). Whereas my sisters, will be more than happy to lounge about the house watching the Indian cricket team wearing their bright blue tops with the gold star of the BCCI. (Although it is interesting that an Indian actually played for the England Cricket team during the 1890s.) In recent months, I have tried my best to appreciate everything I have and be less about chasing the next piece of materialism. This consumerism, that has been bred by the big corporations is not a good thing and I suppose I should bare some responsibility working for one of these blue chip companies, but the reality is, that is pays the bills and I cannot really hide from that. I revisited (in my mind at least) some of the scenes from Slumdog Millionaire, and realised that I am not one to get angry, stressed or even depressed at the insignificant battles I face every day. At the end of the day, I have a warm house I call a home, family and friends that love me and a lifestyle of comfort that many people dream of. I have summarised this into an phrase, perhaps not the most ideal, because it is already trademarked and in regular use by a global electronics manufacturer, but I do not care. LG – Life’s Good. When you look at it, yes it is. After several months towards the backend of last year, when I did not know where my life was actually going, I find myself in a very happy place. While I am sure someone will soon come along and rain on my parade, I will do my utmost, to ensure the fire is only out for a short time (or not at all, if possible). I am trying to focus on even the small things that make me happy. Even if that means, just wearing my sunglasses, having on my lovely blue jacket and blasting Get Back by Ludacris in the car. Okay, I know what you are thinking, where is this all going Teg? Well I believe that going back to the motherland is the completion of the process to truly appreciate my life and my world of plenty. You can never truly understand anything unless you walk a few miles in the shoes / flip flops of someone else, and although I doubt I will be doing that literally, I will get a taste for what life in rural India truly can be like. I am going to do my best to note down all my experiences on paper and upload as many photos to FlickR as possible. In fact, I had to rush into town this afternoon to pick up a 2gb xD card, as my 4gb Compact Flash II card could not be ready by my antique photographic equipment (2005 is light years old apparently). I am all set for this adventure and unlike in 2001 (which was a year before I started blogging) I promise to actually “record” what happens and share with the world my experiences and the life lessons I will surely learn over the course of the next twelve days or so.