gunilla funch bangalore placement

Gunilla Funch

22

Born: Copenhagen, Denmark

Live: Edinburgh, Scotland

Arrived at University of Edinburgh, October 2003

International Business with French

Went on placement in India at Rave magazine, based in Bangalore, India. I thought that it was an easy way of going abroad and working while travelling, if I had a placement then I’d at least have something to do.

Went onto the I-to-I website and it told you everything you needed to know, it cost £1,000 for a five week placement.

It was a bit of a mixed experience while being on placement, wasn’t at all what it said it would be in the description. But I would of gone even if it said I’d of been an office intern. Generally wasn’t the most exciting thing to have spent the summer doing placement wise. I think it’s a lot of money to pay for something that you don’t get anything out of directly; maybe the description could have been more honest about the placement description and what I’d actually be doing.

From the placement I learned how to navigate MySpace. I learned interview techniques and how to research for articles, but I don’t think I’m cut out for a career in the media. I liked the pressure of working under deadlines but I don’t think I’m meant to be a writer.

I loved India, absolutely loved every bit of it. I came with no expectations and over the years I’d always thought it would have been a nice to place to go and see. The people were so friendly and really open-minded compared to back at home. Some people complained about the beaucracy of India and how long it took to get anything done but I lived in Paris for a year and it was nothing compared to the French way of doing things.

I had very little experience with Indian food and I found that I really liked it. If I ever went again I would probably more different foods, I didn’t get food poisoning though like some of the people I was staying with! The climate wasn’t too bad either, in Bangalore it was temperate and it felt like home sometimes, especially with the coolness in the evenings.

We travelled every weekend and the placements were pretty flexible about having time off and taking say a Monday off so that we could have a long weekend. I got to see a fair bit of South India. Hampi, Kerala, Hyderabad, Chennai and Mammallporam.

Kerala was one of the early trips that we did and it was just a beautiful place. Mammallporam felt more Westernised and there were always tourists around.

I quite liked having a placement because we had a base in Bangalore; it was nice to have somewhere to come back to after a weekend away. The place that I was staying at was much better than I expected, there were some great peope and we got all our meals cooked for us and we even had hot water!

If I went again I’d of definitely chosen a different placement. I don’t know if I’d of been cut out for a teaching placement but people out there who did teaching placements seemed to have a really good time and got a lot more out of it than media placements.

I missed India almost as soon as I got back. It was nice to be home at first, you get your own bed, the family around and bran flakes. But after a while you realise just how quiet it is and you miss all the people you met out there. You form quite a strong bond with the people you stay with and you’re out there together so you become close to them and then suddenly those people aren’t there.

Definitely go back in the future, I would like to see other parts of India but would definitely back to Bangalore at some point.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Asia, India, Volunteer interviews

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