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Thursday, February 3, 2011

For two countries that don't necessarily enjoy eachothers company, India and Pakistan have an incredible border ceremony. Hi everyone! I am updating from Amritsar in the state of Punjab. Last night I went to the border of Pakistan for the nightly border ceremony. It starts at 5pm and last about an hour. There is a lot of music and dancing before it starts and two women on each side of the border run up and down the street carrying their respective flags while a crowd of at least 500 shouts and chants. The ceremony starts and the border patrol officers from each country march towards the gate with very quick steps and better high-kicks than any cheerleader or dancer I have ever seen. When the last officers approach the gate, it is opened, the two shake hands and salute eachother. The gate is then shut and not opened again until the end of the ceremony. There are a few more minutes of chants from each country and at the end they march back to the gates, open them, tie ropes connected to the flags together, lower them until they cross and then take them down. The officers fold them and march them back to their patrol stations. It was incredible to see how much pride one country can have. Pictures and videos from the rest of the trip may have to wait until March because I do not think I will have wifi on my laptop again until then, but I hope you will find them worth the wait. I'm running out of time before my 3pm train but I will update about the amazing Golden Temple when I get back to Delhi!. Off for one last cup of chai and heading to the train station for an 8 hour train ride, which in this country unfortunately probably means atleast 10. Hope everyone enjoys the weekend and I will write again soon!   

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