Today was very relaxing. It was the first day that we didn’t visit a school, so everyone slept in past 10:00. When we finally did get up, we slowly packed our clothes as this would be our last day at the hostel. After we ate some late breakfast we went to a nearby bus stop to head to Charminar, one of India’s largest mosques, which is surrounded by a huge market. However, we learned firsthand how unreliable the bus service is here. After an hour of waiting in the heat we finally hopped on the long bus ride to Charminar. Once we arrived we shopped around the crowded market. With fruit stands on one side of the street and a plethora of bangle merchants on the other, we had many things to do with our limited time. Some people shopped for saris and pearls while others shopped for sandals and incense. We all met up at an American-style coffee shop to compare our hauls from the day.
Done with shopping, we began our journey to the IDEX house, where we will be spending the second week here in India. We made our way back to the hostel, packed up all of our luggage onto a charter bus, and headed for the IDEX house. Located in Secunderbad (just North of Hyderabad), the house was a major upgrade from our old abode. After a wonderful dinner, we all settled in, enjoying such luxuries as hot showers, Wi-Fi, and even an Xbox with Fifa 12. The 7 IDEX fellows who live here are all great people, who I can’t wait to get to know better over the course of this week.
-Matthew & Erik