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By Regina Mendez

Today we ended our time in Chennai and began our journey to Kochi also known as the city of coconuts. Although we have only been here a day we have started to take in the culture, architecture, and environment of Kerala. It is so obvious that North and South India are very different. In comparison our group has created a list of 10 observations about South India to give you a better idea of how we have experienced these two distinct parts of India.




  1. There is less pollution.
  2. It has cleaner streets and buildings.
  3. The South has less traffic congestion and is easier to travel around.
  4. Homelessness and poverty are not as visible and are possibly less.
  5. The architecture is more intricate and detailed.
  6. The South has less advertising, especially for things like movies.
  7. People dress more conservatively.
  8. Nature flourishes and green is everywhere.
  9. There are  more trash cans outside so people can properly dispose of trash.
  10. HEAT! The South is tropical.


Even though I noticed that there is less pollution in the South. My initial thought when I got off the plane in Kochi was THE AIR! Not that we couldn’t breath but you could definitely tell that pollution made the air very dense. This was a concerning issue to me. I was curious to learn how it got to this point so I went online and began searching. From my findings I found that 70% of the air pollution is from industry and the rest is from transportation fumes. I also look forward to follow-up on what the city will do to decrease this problem.

Shortly after leaving the airport, we went to the hotel to catch up on sleep, relax and have bonding time! A few hours later we took a walk to the beach. We sat along the rock and looked out at the Arabian Sea. I used this time for self reflection and self-questioning. I thought about the following things: Who am I? Why do I choose to overthink? Why do I still think about life in Boston, when I’m miles away in India? Everyone has spoke of the growth they have experienced from this trip. How do you know when that will happen for me? How do you know that the impact I see here will last forever and not a few months?