Well, I have had many interesting conversations with Indian girls my age who are looking to western ideas on life. They feel that India is too backwards when it comes to women, and support new thoughts.
One thought is on cohabitation. The night before the U.P. (uttar pradesh) we had a long conversation about boys, marriage, and our different cultures. They were shocked to find out that I am currently with my second boyfriend. lol. To them, if you have a boyfriend, that means your marrying him. However, after talking more, I found out that one thought that it made more sense to try cohabitation before getting married. She even said that if she lived in the U.S., she would probably try cohabitation. However, because she's in India, and wants to make her parents proud, she'll marry whomever they choose. She's very lucky that her parents hold her education very high, because they told her not to worry about guys until she's completely done with school. This is a huge contrast to the many trainees here who were married at the young age of 14 or 16.
Another thought came from a nice stranger I met at Patal Pani. She told me that she thought a lot of India's customs were ridiculous. She complained that the men always wanted women to dress in traditional clothes while they wore western outfits. She said she doesn't like to listen to the men in her family when they tell her to change out of her jeans and tshirt into a salwar kamise. She also says that we are lucky to be allowed to travel alone. If she wanted to go anywhere, she would have to get the permission of her whole entire family, including older brothers. Even then, she would not be allowed to travel without an "escort" who is usually her younger brother. She said she wants this to change in India, and that she wants to be as free as us western girls.
Just two interesting encounters I had!