Spice Diaries Vol. 14, Sept. 11, 2007

September 11, 2007 No Comments »

It’s hard to believe that yet another Sep. 11th is going by. Once again I’m out of the country this year. Just two weeks ago in India there was a huge terrorist attack in Hyderabad – killing over 40 people…did you even hear about it? Probably not. Here in India, the front page of the newspapers lead with photos of blood soaked stadium seats; the terrorists struck at a amusement park full of families. Terrorism isn’t just in the US…people struggle with it all over the world.

The terrorism in Hyderabad was on the front page for one day…yes – one day. Then it was shoved to page 5 and beyond. It amazed me how little people talked about it here. In fact, the Cross Cultural Solutions staff who we see multiple times a day didn’t ever say a word about it to me. However – the one big thing to realize that in Asia…life is cheap. Dirt cheap. With 1.2 billion people living in India (a country 1/3 the size of the US) – if 40+ people die – it is a blip. This is pretty common throughout Asia.

I normally read the paper here in India every morning – fascinated by the crazy stories that seemed unreal. The weekend we arrived there was a woman that answered her door and two men poured gasoline on her and lit her on fire. Allegedly her husband’s mistress had something to do with it. Anyway – it was a pretty scary thought and it definitely caught my attention. I couldn’t remember the last time I saw a headline like that in the US. If there was, Good Morning America, Entertainment Tonight, the Today Show, Hallmark Movies, and Oprah would all have a special on it. Here…it disappeared from the papers after a day.

One morning I wrote down the various article headlines from the 3 papers we receive at the flat. These headlines weren’t even on the front page – some buried as deep as page 22.

Man Jumps Red Light, Kills Youth Near Prime Minister’s House
250 Dead in Orissa Cholera Outbreak
Wife Beats Man to Death
19 Killed in Bus Accident
2 Open Fire on Factory Owner
Mother Smothers Baby, Probably Because She Was a Girl Says Police
At Least 72 Pilgrims Killed as Bus Falls into Gorge

I’m not making any of these up…they were all there…staring at me in the paper. Making me sad, making me wonder. It’s different here – the term ‘worlds apart’ now has meaning to me.


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