Only in India

Adventures of an International Educator

Non-Fiction - Memoir
232 Pages
Reviewed on 11/09/2019
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Lucinda E Clarke for Readers' Favorite

Only in India: Adventures of an International Educator by Jill Dobbe is not the first book I have read by this author. Previously I have enjoyed her descriptions of teaching in Egypt and I was not disappointed with her stories about India. Together with her husband, the couple accepted the management of a new international school not far outside Delhi. However, an impressive complex of buildings hid the absence of the necessary day to day equipment such as chalk or board dusters. The accommodation that was provided tested their resolve, beginning with an invasion of large and aggressive ants that covered the kitchen floor. They found the children polite and well-behaved in this private school, which also attracted students from Korea. Besides the day to day teaching, the author describes several of the tours they took exploring India. They ventured into the foothills of the Himalayas, braving some of the most dangerous roads in the world to visit the townhome of the Dalai Lama and other hill station towns.

What makes Only in India by Jill Dobbe, and her other work/travel books, a special read for me is her understanding and acceptance of foreign cultures. Time and time again they encounter behaviors that are foreign and incomprehensible to visitors, but never does the author judge or decry such behavior. I think this is the key to their successful career teaching in so many different parts of the world. Her descriptions of the sights and sounds are vivid; you feel you could be walking beside her in the streets of India, smelling the spices and seeing the wealth of goods on display. This is an informative, easy and comfortable book to read. If you are planning to visit India or just interested in learning about other cultures, then this book is recommended.