What’s up?

Hey everyone.

For those of you that like to skim everything you read, here’s all you need to know:

I, Chris Yoder, will be spending 11 months in Nagpur, India next year, and writing a blog about it, starting in July. This is the website you should come to when you want to read about it.

For those of you that actually read everything all the way through, I have more for you. In fact, if you read everything all the way through this year, I think you’ll find this blog more rewarding than those who like to skim.

You may be wondering, as you read this the first time: “What is this about?”

Next year, I will be spending 11 months in Nagpur, India through Rotary Youth Exchange. You can read more about “why” here. The exchange is a cultural one, wherein students learn about their host country by living the life of their peers.

But my time will be wasted if I’m the only one who learns. So I decided to share my knowledge – of both American and Indian culture – with as many people as possible by writing this blog.

As I’ll be a student of Indian Culture, I’ll also be a teacher. I’ll be explaining to you the things that happen, so you can learn from them just as I do. But I don’t want to bore you. I’m not just going to restate the things that happen to me everyday. Instead, I’ll try to take a “why” approach to the things that are happening. Or maybe the “what” will be interesting enough. Don’t be afraid to give feedback on my posts. Please comment, and do so as much as you’d like.

Just as there are Americans who aren’t familiar with Indian culture, I’ll meet people in India who aren’t familiar with American culture. This blog is for all of those people too. I want everyone to be on the same page. Not only will I explain my Indian life to those of you back in the U.S., but I’ll explain my life in the Midwest to the people I meet in India. I fully expect to talk about both baseball and cricket at some point this year.

I don’t know how often I’ll be able to post. I’d like to post a couple of times a week, at least. That may or may not be reasonable. The main point of the exchange is to adapt to another culture, and I have to maintain a tricky balance between being online and being online too much. Assimilation is key. I can’t spend too much time on Facebook and Google Chat with people back home, or I won’t be able to live my life as it was intended.

That said, I won’t forget about all of you at Uni, in Champaign-Urbana, in Illinois, in the U.S. – my friends, my family, my teachers, even those of you who don’t know me well or don’t know me at all. This exchange isn’t just for me, it’s for all of you.

It might behoove you – especially for the time being – to subscribe to my blog by putting your email in the little box on the right side of the home page. That way you get a reminder in your inbox every time I write something new. Since I don’t plan on writing as much between now and July, you’ll notice when I start posting in earnest. If I get boring, you can always unsubscribe (although I’d prefer if you tell me that I’m getting boring first).

You also may find it easier to comment if you have a WordPress account, since I won’t have to approve your comments every time. In fact, yes, please do create an account, even if you just use it for this.

One last thing: every post will end with a smiley face. When you see it at the bottom of my posts, consider it a reminder that all is well.

Smile everyone.


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6 Responses to “What’s up?”

  1. jaber2 Says:


    I’ll be sure to give feedback as I go, and I hope I can get the big picture along with a few details of your trip.

    Cordially, Mohammad

  2. John Says:

    Chris, this is awesome. Three times a week may be a lot, but twice or once should be feasible. Good luck!

  3. seeminglyattainable Says:

    ust out of curiousity, why did you choose India to do your exchange, sorry if thats kinda annoying, i would know, people are always asking me why I’m spending mine in Belgium and I’m never sure quite what to say. Sounds like an awsome experience, i’ll be chacking in to see how it progresses

    • cyoder Says:

      During the application process, we ranked about 40 countries based on how much we want to go there. Rotary assigns you one based on openings in the other countries and how good a fit you are for the country. India was my fourth choice.

  4. Nora Says:

    Chris, I am so pleased that you will be doing a blog from India! I am so jealous that you will be there shortly and I cannot wait to hear all about your adventures!

  5. p yoder Says:

    India appears to be the best choice of the ones offered. The future:


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