I never liked goodbyes.
We left Chandigarh at 4:30am today for the Delhi international airport, from which we would be taking our flight home.
Leaving our family in India is always sad, but this time was different. I had spent so much time with them that leaving was harder than usual. Chandigarh had in its own way became a second home, one filled with love, family, laughter, and also with a breathtaking culture and new experiences.
I will never forget staying up late with my family talking, watching movies, laughing, and spending time together. I won't forget the wealth of knowledge I got interning, observing client meetings, reading cases, and watching court proceedings. I can't forget the colors of the craft mela, the delicious foods, the fireworks and wedding bands in the streets. I will always remember the smiles of the handicapped man and the little children selling souvenirs in Agra. I will never forget the peace I found in Darbar Sahib. I will remember the traffic, the honking, the crowds, the shopping, the smell of henna on my hands, and the auto-rickshaw rides to work. I won't forget the knot that formed in my stomach when I heard about the gang rape that happened in Delhi or when I read about rape cases and domestic violence, and 1984, and so many other injustices. I will never forget the tears in my eyes when I saw where the Chote Sahibzade had given their lives, or when I saw the majestic image of Mai Bhago riding into battle.
When I think back to the woman I was when I first arrived in India, I know that my trip was well worth it; I have changed and grown so much in these past few months. I pray for the strength to follow in the footsteps of the Chote Sahibzade and Mai Bhago – to fight fearlessly for injustice, to have the courage to stand up for what I believe in, and to honor their legacy.
With that thought I leave this beautiful country, but a piece of my heart will forever remain here. Goodbye India. I will miss you. I hope we meet again soon.