Golden Amritsar

On our first day in Amritsar, we attended the flag ceremony at the India-Pakistan border. Before the ceremony began, we somehow found ourselves dancing in the street with other tourists from all around India. All the foreigners had to sit in a separate section during the actual show. We managed to see a fantastic sunset over the Pakistan horizon. That night, we made our first trip to the Golden Temple, one of the most famous Sikh landmarks in India. The next morning we visited Jallianwala Bagh. The site is famous for the 1919 massacre of thousands of peaceful protesters. Now, people come from all over India to commemorate those who died. After leaving Jallianwala Bagh, we visited the Golden Temple during the daytime. We took a tour and stayed to partake in the free lunch offered to all of the Temple's visitors. After lunch, some of us stayed on to volunteer to make chapatis with the Temple workers (and also took a chai break with them). The entire complex was massive, covered in marble and filled with a giant pool of water where people were bathing during the day.

For our India Since Independence class, we visited Amritsar, home of two major sites in Indian history. The first is the Golden Temple, one of the most well-known Sikh landmarks in India. We went there twice – once at night to see all the lights, and once during the day for a real tour. We also visited Jallianwala Bagh, a garden and memorial to the massacre that occurred there in 1919. By far my favorite experience was helping make chapatis for the lunch served at the Temple. We made friends with the other volunteers and gladly took a much-needed chai break with them, despite our abysmal Hindi and non-existent Punjabi skills.