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"America is a very powerful country," Jaisalmer, India

These kids are required to speak English in school; speaking even a word of Hindi entails a fine of 20 rupees.


The young gentleman appointed himself group spokesman, and asked where I was from. When I told him the United States, he said, "America is a very powerful country." I told him that India was powerful too, but he seemed skeptical.


When he asked my caste, I told him that America didn't have castes. We had a nice chat, but by the time it was over I think he'd concluded he was talking to a fool.

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Taken on February 23, 2005