My summer of volunteer in Spiti leads me to a nunnery in the Morang village of the valley, in the backdrop of snow-hooded Himalayas and on the shore of the Spiti River. To conceptualize a new volunteer program for Ecosphere, the organization I’m volunteering with, I’m spending an evening with a nun to learn about her life. I’m a little anxious; the closest I’ve been to a nunnery is in the wanderings of my curious mind, and the last thing I want to do is cross the thin line into insensitivity.
In a country of 28 states, each with its signature culture, food, language, history & landscape, it’s not easy for a traveler to scratch the tourism surface of India beyond the golden triangle. The need of the hour, as recognized by Indian Tourism, UNDP and a string of social entrepreneurs, is to develop sustainable, responsible travel initiatives in high-potential regions of rural India.