Young woman fails to find self in India

Travelling is a waste of money.

Young woman fails to find self in India

14 July, 2015. 15:06

ERROL PARKER | Editor-at-large | Contact

A FREMANTLE WOMAN says her recent trip to India failed to live up to expectation after being repeatedly exposed to poverty, leprosy and general human suffering.

While admitting she’s a relatively inexperienced traveller, Rachael Cromwell described her holiday as “a living hell” and “not what the pamphlets promised”.

Ms Cromwell said she was prepared to forsake some creature comforts of her comparably idyllic lifestyle on Fremantle’s south coast but what she had to live through on the sub-continent was beyond the pale.

“It was just unacceptable,” she said.

“If the Indian tourism board represented the country properly, they’d show people shitting in the street like it’s normal and mothers wiping vaseline over their children’s eyes to make it look like they have glaucoma,”

“After saving up for almost a year, I feel really let down by the experience.”

As more than 122 million households have no toilets, and 33% lack access to latrines, over 50% of the population (638 million) defecate in the open. This is relatively higher than Bangladesh and Brazil (7%) and China (4%). Although 211 million people gained access to improved sanitation from 1990–2008, only 31% use the facilities provided.

Much the chagrin of the average traveller, diseases such as dengue fever, hepatitis, tuberculosis, malaria and pneumonia continue to plague India due to increased resistance to antibiotics.

“That was the scariest part,” says Cromwell.

“Before I left for India, I went to the doctor and asked to be vaccinated against all these terrible diseases and he told me there weren’t vaccines for most of the things you’d catch in India,”

“Why the hell to people risk getting leprosy? You can die from that?”

While most of her recollection of her time in India is overwhelmingly negative, Ms Cromwell said there were some positives to take away from it.

“Somewhere along the line, I ate something I probably shouldn’t have,” she said.

“Long story short, it completely emptied me out. It was the deepest body cleanse I’ve ever had. In only 4 days, I managed to lose 12kg,”

“Maybe I’ll dose myself up with E. Coli. this summer to get me bikini ready.’

This young woman’s tale is just one many Indian horror stories.

In 2011, a Sydney man was left traumatised and unable to work after a short four week holiday to India after he revealed that he had to live without personal space for the entire duration.

He developed a fear of using public transport after an elderly Indian man used his leg as an armrest during a train journey from Jaisalmr to Jodphur.

In addition to this, the man can no longer answer the phone because he’s scared the person on the other end might be an Indian telemarketer.

Reflecting on her experience, Cromwell could only chalk it up to one thing.

“I came to India expecting to find culture a peace in life, what I found was the place that God forgot.”


11 Responses to "Young woman fails to find self in India"

  1. Simon Reynolds   May 13, 2016 at 7:30 pm

    Scammers must love you.

  2. none   May 14, 2016 at 1:43 am


  3. Lisa   May 14, 2016 at 3:00 pm

    I went to India March 2016 , I had an amazing adventure . One has to expect that it is what it is considering the population . It was incredible magical enlightening and so different so alive .
    I would go again at the drop of a hat. I live in Noosa and I am very grateful for that, but I Loved India . Namaste .

  4. Sam   September 19, 2016 at 3:01 pm

    As an Aussie living in India I love this!

  5. Chloe   September 19, 2016 at 3:16 pm

    This lady just sounds completely uneducated and stupid. If you’re going to go to a country purely based on what the tourism board markets to you and not do your own research before going, I have no sympathy for you. Especially a 3rd world country, what did you really expect, honestly. Seeing as this article made so many racist assumptions, I’m going to assume this lady is an uneducated, close-minded American. India is an incredible country for so many reasons and I would go back in a tomorrow if I could.

  6. Ar   September 19, 2016 at 10:13 pm

    As someone who was born in India but was brought up in Australia, I understand what this lady could’ve gone through. However I have no sympathy for her since she clearly didn’t bother doing any research for her trip. I also think she went to India for the slum tour to wow friends with pictures of how everyone lives in a shanty. If she’d bothered to actually experience the positive aspects of India, a land with a lot of culture, history and beauty she may have had a fruitful experience.

  7. Grammar nazi   September 20, 2016 at 12:07 am

    This woman is a fucking moron. How does this nonsense get any air time? Do your research before you leave Perth, stop being racist and judgemental and open your eyes. You may actually learn something. What an entitled and privileged Caucasian.

  8. Ana   September 20, 2016 at 6:20 am

    Hahhahahaha I’m sorry but this text made me laugh so hard! I spent 5 months in India and absolutely loved it. And yes… I miss it and hope
    To be back one day. Everything she says is real… India is completely UNIQUE like no other place in the world. I didn’t go to find my self… Sorry but you can do it in your own country, if your attitude is not a positive one you can’t expect to go to India and find yourself. Getting sick is a risk one takes when deciding to travel to this country. I hope at least you learn how to be grateful for everything you got in the first world… Personal space, hygiene, health care, TOILETS and commodities; I know I learnt I couldn’t live forever in India.

  9. Bille bob   September 21, 2016 at 4:58 am

    she must have stayed at the 3rd best Marigold Hotel….LOL

  10. Peta Hay   September 21, 2016 at 1:43 pm

    Well, I spent nearly three months in India doing an overland trip from top to bottom. It is an incredible place. I got Delhi belly in the North because I had ice in my drink(it was local water). I would love to go back sometime as it was spectacular. Sure, it is rough sometimes but I don’t look for what I get at home. If I wanted that, I should just stay home. I am used to the grittiness, it doesn’t bother me. I go for the spiritual and the experience. Holidaying at home bored me. I like different cultures and don’t mind the rough places- we even camped in India (without facilities).


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