A Travellerspoint blog

Predeparture

Or, the calm before the storm

Wow, a blog! I've never had a blog before!

This coming semester, Spring 2012, I'll be studying in Dharamsala, India on a program run by Emory University in Tibetan Studies. Dharamsala is the center of the Tibetan exile community, the CTA (formerly the "Tibetan Government-in-Exile"), and the home base of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. The 17 or 18 American students on the program will live at various points with Tibetan roommates at a Buddhist university (Institute for Buddhist Dialectics--Sarah Campus), with a homestay family, and at a guesthouse in McCleod-Ganj (part of Dharamsala). We'll take courses in Tibetan Culture and Civilization, Tibetan Buddhist Philosophy, and Tibetan Language, and complete an independent research project--I'm planning on doing some sociolinguistics, investigating the way Tibetan speakers from different regions adapt their tone use in the diaspora. Fun, challenging, all that good stuff. We'll also attend two weeks of the Dalai Lama's public teachings, have a private audience with His Holiness, go on a field trip or two, and spend a week of "Spring Break" travelling in India or otherwise doing wonderful things.

After spending the previous weekend with Swarthmore Fencing at the Air Force Academy in Colorado, I'll board a plane to Hong Kong on January 12th, then fly from there to New Delhi. The Emory group will gather there for a couple days of orientation, then relocate to IBD-Sarah campus in Dharamsala. More on that later.

I suppose the title of this blog is a bit of a misnomer--I'm not just going to India, but Australia too! After the program concludes around May 15th, I'll fly to Sydney to spend some time visiting my godmother and her family (Joanne, Peter, and Zach). Then it's back to the US on the 29th. Thinking about all of this at once is kinda tiring, so I'll try to handle one bit at a time.
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So! I hope you enjoy the blog. Feel free--no, absolutely welcome--to comment on my various posts. I'm still learning how to use this website, but my lovely parents bought be a lovely digital camera for Christmas, so I should be able to upload photos from time to time. A student on the same program I'm attending kept a very nice blog a couple years ago, meaning that there'll be enough Internet access for blog-keeping. I can't guarantee how often I'll be able to respond, but I'll try to keep abreast on this blog as well as my Swatmail (cgeissl1@swarthmore.edu) and Yahoo (cageissler@yahoo.com) email accounts.

Until next time... still in Jersey.

Posted by cageissler 18:37 Archived in USA Comments (3)

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