Manipal: Indian Thanksgiving

As an American, Thanksgiving is just a natural part of life, the beginning of the holiday season, a time for family and friends. I didn’t realize until I was abroad for Thanksgiving, how uniquely American it really is. Not that I would have expected any different, but it was odd to see my friends updating … Continue reading

Manipal: The Festival of Lights

The weekend trip to Goa and Gokarna was absolutely amazing but as they are mainly tourist destinations, there were not really any Diwali celebrations. For anyone unfamiliar with Diwali in India, it is socially acceptable time to develop pyrotechnic tendancies. Groups of students spent thousands of rupees on fireworks and then gather around and set them off … Continue reading


Last week our study abroad celebrated Halloween in typical American fashion, dressing up and hanging out with friends. Halloween celebrations have definitely been on the rise in recent years in India, though not to the same extent as in the US. It was strange not to see the pumpkins, witches, spiderwebs and hay decorating all … Continue reading

Koppa: Tea Time at Upasi

The morning after Halloween (which was a Wednesday this year) was a holiday so we headed over to Koppa to visit the Upasi Tea and Research Foundation! We drove in the bus down the familiar highway, past the Agumbe Rainforest…it was about a two and a half to three hour drive (but I slept the … Continue reading

Manipal: Dandiya Dancing the Night Away!

After returning from the Rainforest it was time to get ready for festival on KMC greens. I walked by and saw a huge tented an gated structure, and it only reinforced the desire and the excitement for Dhol Baje later that evening. I got ready and in typical Indian fashion (oh no, it’s starting to catch … Continue reading

Agumbe: Diversity Conserved

This past Saturday we visited the Agumbe Rainforest Research Station. After a winding path up the mountains (in the same direction we went to Jog Falls), and a hidden bumpy narrow path, we finally found the research station tucked away in the forest. While the rainforest covers only 6% of the landmass of India in … Continue reading

Udupi: Best Wishes for a Married Couple

Last Monday one of our teaching assistant’s  cousins had a wedding right here in Udupi! She was so nice and invited us to come and be guests at the wedding. Well if you’ve been to a Christian marriage ceremony, this was nothing like that. We ordered a taxi and left to arrive at the Hotel … Continue reading

Udupi: Pasteurization in Process

Two Friday’s ago our weekly field visit took us to a pasteurization plant! Milk is an essential part of the diet, but contaminated milk can be a vector of disease. We toured the plant (but couldn’t take pictures of the process line), which is only about 20 minutes away from Manipal University. The plant runs continuously with … Continue reading

Manipal: Learning Classical Bharatanatyam

Friday marked the start of my Baratanatyam dance training…well twice a week for the next month and a half. Actual dancers will train for 14 to 15 years to complete dance training. I’m very excited to finally be taking a classical dance class and paired with yoga, my body is certainly getting a good workout … Continue reading

Malpe Fishing Industry: Fishing for Export

This past Saturday we took a trip to the Malpe fishing docks to catch a glimpse at the fishing industry. The air was thick with the smell of the new catch and the dock was wet and black with cuttlefish ink…but it was interesting to look at the hectic scene and know that it is … Continue reading