Wow! This is it. This is actually it. Warning: long post!
-TV-Radio-Film Major, Sociology Minor at Syracuse University ’16
-From Pasadena, CA
I have been contemplating what to actually type here for the last 15 minutes because I’m too excited to function correctly right now. Since school ended officially on May 8th, my friend graciously allowed me to sleep on her couch until tomorrow, when I would be leaving for India. She recently finished the master’s program at Newhouse for TRF and she’s going to go far in life, I can just tell. 🙂 We’ve watched a bunch of TV shows and movies throughout the week.
I have also been able to meet up with some friends who are still in Syracuse as well. We’ve been exploring Syracuse and hanging out–and wow, is Syracuse beautiful during the summer! Last year, I left Syracuse as early as possible, only to realize that there wasn’t much to do at home. Being in college is such a transitional and reflective moment in life. It’s crazy to think that the place we once called home is now super small and more limited than we thought…I’m going off on a tangent, but basically, the world is a MUCH bigger place now.
For example, this abroad trip to Mumbai, India. It’s been quite the struggle trying to get everything together in preparation for this trip, but it’s all finally come together and reality is hitting me. I’m leaving the country…
Why I am going on this trip:
I’ve wanted to go on this trip since last summer, when I used my professional Google skills to find it. A director that I admire, James Ponsoldt, said in an interview that he got inspired from Bollywood film. After reading that, I thought to myself: yo, you need to get on this. So I did. I got put into Professor Goenka’s TRF 205 production class, and on the very first day, I went up to her and said “I’m really interested in going on the Bollywood trip.” And that was that.
Another personal reason I want to go is because my heritage. I am half Filipino and half Indian, but I am also most definitely 100% born and raised in California. I’m happy and proud to be who I am today, but I didn’t get here without a lot of self-questioning about identity and background. I visited the Philippines in the 8th grade and got to meet a lot of my relatives and experience part of my culture. However, I have never been to India.
What’s different than the usual, though, is that my dad is from northeast India–specifically, a state called Nagaland. From the fragmented pieces of history that I know and understand, Nagaland is very different from the rest of India. Mumbai, where we are going, is also on the opposite side of the Indian nation. However…if anything, it’s one step closer to learning more about my heritage and culture regardless. I definitely hope to one day visit Nagaland and most definitely re-visit the Philippines as well.
One last reason is that I am fascinated by cinematic history. This past spring semester I took a class called “History of American Entertainment, 1830s – 1940s.” It was eye-opening and incredibly interesting the way entertainment evolved and the way cinema was born in the US. It made me wonder, though–how did other countries experiment with cinema? If I’m not mistaken, India contains the largest film industry in the world–yet I know next to nothing about it. India took cinema and made it its own. And I cannot wait to experience and learn about it.
Early tomorrow morning I will embark on the Greyhound bus to Newark, NJ, where our group flight takes place. I know a majority of the friends going on this trip but I am sooo looking forward to getting to know everyone better and having AMAZING adventures. This is the experience of a lifetime, and I cannot wait to begin! WOOOOH.