Landing Right Side Up in Nehru's India by Jean Durgin Harlan
Field Notes from a Punjab Sojourn

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On India's Independence Day in 1962, an Ohio family of six landed dockside at the Bombay Harbor, stranded by holiday miscommunications. It was a fitting introduction to an upside down lifestyle ahead. A two day train journey to their temporary home in the Punjab confirmed the fascination and unpredictability of travel in India.

A Fulbright grant bought them to Chandigarh, the ten-year-old Punjab capitol. Making a home and learning to adjust to India's complex ways were challenges. Culture shock hit often, and local schools stunned the children. Fortunately, neighbors were welcoming.

Journeys by bus and train took them almost the length and breadth of India. Visits to the Taj Mahal, the Ganges at Benares, the Sikh Golden Temple, four major cities, a hill station, an ancient cave temple carved from rock, and a mud-hut village just skimmed the surface of all that is India. But they revealed awesome beauty and appalling poverty.

Traveling abroad with an open mind and a spirit of adventure can be transformational for any of us. For the author, a single serendipitous photograph on a Punjab college wall recast the entire trajectory of her path toward a fulfilling lifetime.

 

About Jean Durgin Harlan

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Jean Durgin Harlan, PhD, taught child development at Ohio University. She is the author of Science Experiences for the Early Childhood Years, Kindergarten Science, and Science As It Happens. Retired from her clinical psychology practice, Harlan lives in Columbus, Ohio. She has five children and eleven grandchildren.
 
Published November 12, 2012 by iUniverse. 184 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction

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A memoir of an Ohio family's enlightening and often culturally jarring 1960s sojourn to India.

Feb 15 2013 | Read Full Review of Landing Right Side Up in Nehr...

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