India is the one land that all men desire to see, and having seen once, by even a glimpse, would not give that glimpse for all the shows of all the rest of the globe combined. – Mark Twain
Namaste from Matthew, Willem, Max, Max and Mr and Mrs Patel
We wanted to share some highlights from our incredible cultural and sporting trip to India in December.
Travel and Accommodation
We were greeted by our Indian friends at Ahmedabad airport and drove a couple of hours to our hotel in Vadodara. The journey was a true assault on all of our senses with lots to see, different smells and constant honking of horns to listen to. The number of cows (which are sacred in India) roaming freely on the roads was awesome.
Our hotel was superb and we quickly settled into our luxurious rooms ready for the adventure to start!
We played four cricket matches with the Academy team which was a brilliant experience as we had to get used to communicating with players from another country and the playing conditions…which were very different to the UK!
Our schedule was full on and we would play matches in the morning because it was cooler and then have specialist coaching in the afternoon. The coaches were incredible and we learned lots of new things.
Culture and History
We were very privileged to have been able to visit the palace where the Maharajah of Vadodara resides. We stood in awe of the Laxmi Villas Palace which is four times the size of Buckingham Palace. Mr Patel had his eye on the golf course that the Maharajah had built in the palace grounds, but did not manage to play…..maybe next time!
The range of schools in India is very diverse and we visited a world class international school, Cygnus School, where we worked alongside boys and girls from India in Science lessons. We then visited what is called a Government School where the children are much less privileged. This was very humbling and we handed out sweets, pencils, rubbers and rulers which the children were so happy to receive.
We have made what we hope will be lifelong friends on this trip and the social evening that they hosted for us was lovely. The hospitality that we have experienced is hard to explain and we hope that other Bickley boys will get the chance to experience it. We enjoyed lots of different food and even tried some Bollywood dancing…..with the help of Mrs Patel!
Our final thoughts….
India was one of the best times of my life. To meet all of those people and try so many different things it was just amazing. But one of the things that stood out was how welcoming and generous the people were, because even though they had so little they gave so much. It will stay with me for the rest of my life.
Thank you Bickley park school and the Kiran More Cricket Academy for that extravagant cultural experience. I feel so privileged to have been involved.
The trip to India was amazing from the cricket to the brilliant hospitality. What stood out most for me was the kindness from everyone. The parents giving us all gifts and Aadhar (the coach) who would do a lot of things to help us enjoy our time at the academy. Particularly I enjoyed the final game where Mr Patel, Mrs Patel and Aadhar had put in a lot of effort for us boys to have a fun time. Also, when we visited the schools it was very nice to see the children’s faces when they got their gifts that we were handing out. Overall the trip was an amazing experience and I really enjoyed it.
The India trip was truly unforgettable even just seeing all of the cultural differences and the warmth and good nature of the people we met was amazing. Some of their living conditions really opened my eyes to the world. On top of that the cricket – the academy, the coaches and the players and their generosity and friendship really completed the trip of a lifetime
We felt privileged to be able to share our love of India and the culture with four amazing boys. Each of them experienced all that India had to offer in their own way and we look forward to sharing this amazing trip with another four lucky Bickley Park School boys in December 2020!
Mr and Mrs Patel