Understanding India: Infosys

    We were guests for a few nights at the Infosys campus in Mysore. Infosys is a technology campus that trains employees, but it feels more like a normal college. At any time of day I would see young men and women walk together with their backpacks bouncing around as they head to class or to their dorm, all with ID cards hanging around their necks.
    We got rooms to ourselves and air conditioning and wifi. I watched Cartoon Network in Hindi and birds perch on the bars of my open window. Everyday we ate on a floating open-air restaurant surrounded giant koi. The day we toured campus I didn't bring my camera, and by not photographing it feels even more unbelievable. The campus has huge structures; the building below can fit 10,000 students at a time. In that one building is a cafeteria, tiered classrooms with computers, a huge library, and a formal boardroom. And every Sunday in front of this building a huge circular fountain dances.
    A building similar to Epcot's famous golf ball holds multiple theatres with balconies. Another structure – calling them buildings feels inaccurate – hosts purpose rooms. Every room has one particular recreational activity. A billiard room with at least 20 pool tables. A tennis table room. A bowling alley. A set of rooms to play squash in. A music room. The night we visited students were learning guitar.
    All of these rooms were stacked on top of each other connected by an outdoor balcony overlooking a pool. A pool with an island and fountains and columns and lights and grass and hanging plants. I stood at the balcony watching people swim laps unfazed by what I saw as extravagance.
    On the tour I drank coconut water out of a coconut; they were kind enough to provide straws. I saw exotic birds, banana trees, and roaming chickens. We go from the city of Bangalore - the bustle, the crowded streets and honking horns to Infosys – an oasis in the middle of Mysore with a helipad big enough for three helicopters to rest on. From the helipad I could see every inch of the Infosys campus and what bordered it. Dilapidated structures outside the fences. Colorful and tall buildings, trees and farmland.
    Literally the nicest place I have ever stayed was in Mysore, India and I would have never expected that.
Infosys and Mysore Infosys and Mysore
Infosys and Mysore

See more photos here. Check out the google image search for Infosys to get a better idea.

Read more: 
The Arrival 
Bangalore
Infosys
Chennakesava Temple
Mysore Palace
Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary
Around the Coffee Plantation
Elephant Camp Pt. 1
Elephant Camp Pt. 2
King of Cobras
Kuppalli and Kuvempu
Elephant Bath

We were in India to complete the filming of the documentary Elephants in the Coffee. And now it’s done. It explores the elephant-human conflict that has been happening in India. The coffee you drink has most likely been wandered through by elephants. They are a nuisance to farmers, but also a god in the Hindu belief. You cannot destroy a god. But you can scare it off with crackers and shotgun blasts. The elephant habitat is shrinking. In its place villages and farms have moved in. Elephants walk the same paths they have for hundreds of years, even if houses, crops, or people stand in their way. How could anyone stop them? Electric fences, trenches and steel beams have been used and are being used to keep them out and keep people safe. Nobody wants a god wandering through their crops eating their jack fruit, trampling their livelihood. But a god cannot be stopped.  

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