Friday, July 8

the week in a nutshell

(Totally typical. Cows, trucks, rickshaws, people... all battling for some room on the road. Also take note, there is no sign of a lane or any kind of order, but how PRETTY is that truck? :)

Despite what I once thought, Indians do, indeed, listen to 'Jai Ho' from Slumdog Millionaire. This is great news; I always thought I was being a poser Indian-obsessed human being, listening to that soundtrack over and over again but alas I have proved myself wrong again! One of the priests came over the other day with his new iPad from the States (he had been living in Amarillo, Texas for the past four years...random?) and we spent the entire afternoon downloading iTunes (even though you can't purchase songs, shows or movies from India) and setting it up/jammin' to Jai Ho and some of his other Indian songs. I also had my first sample of nannuri (spelling?) juice. At first taste, it reminded me of some kind of gross cough medicine. The rest of it went down well, though, and I think I may have tasted a little vanilla extract flavor in there. Nevertheless, this juice is supposed to cool the body and after all of this heat, I was willing to try just about anything.

Back in my 5th grade class, since I've been writing stories, I challenged them to write their own. The next day, one boy, Rohit, raised his hand eagerly, volunteering to read his story aloud first. Although his grammar was not perfect, I was extraordinarily impressed with his story, super clever! More or less, the story went as followed:

"Once upon a time, there was a chili, a banana and an onion. They were friends. The three of them went to the cinema one day. On the way to the cinema, the banana was hit by a car and died. The chili and onion cried and cried. While they were at the movie, the chili was stomped on and killed. The onion cried and cried. After the movie, a man took the onion and chopped him up in the kitchen and the man cried."
Get it?! (I didn't at first.) Because everyone "cries" or tears up when they chop an onion! I thought it was great. Since then, Rohit has written a couple other stories (and drew illustrations to go along with them). He reminds me of myself as a little nugget, since I was always writing stories and publishing them (aka laminating and stapling them) or writing plays with my friends and trying to get people at recess to try out for them.

In the food area (which is ALWAYS important to note), I have a new favorite! Puri (fried dough) and korma (green curry with potatoes, onion, garbanzos and tomato). HOLY COW! Absolute bliss in your mouth. I am determined to learn how to make both of these before I leave because I don't think it's possible for me to live without them when I return to the U.S. Thanks Bakkiam for the delicious treat (she's on the right, obviously, with her brother, Paoili).


In other news, the sisters and I went about five minutes from campus to make some "family visits," just to hang out and say hi to the families of some of the kids that go to our school. This was a very eye-opening and emotional experience. At first, I wanted to cry, looking at these peoples' homes (aka one room that seven people live in) and the state of the people. But after wandering around and observing a few different households, I realized that they are really happy, even with so little. This just reinforced the idea that things are just things. They shouldn't make or break your mood or your quality of life. Although this is a concept I'm still learning (and I'm definitely still guilty of checking the lululemon or Nordstrom websites, even in India with the slow internet and impossibility of purchase), I'm hoping after a few more months here, "things" will mean a lot less to me. What really matters, and what I learn everyday here, watching the kids interact and the nuns as they care for each other and the kids too, are the relationships that you build with others and the way that you live your life. Again, this is a work in progress; something I'll work at probably for the rest of my life. And even though a little materialism may always exist within me, I think that's just called being human. But nonetheless, it is important to be aware of it.
Last bit of exciting news: the cow here had a baby!! SHE IS SO CUTE! And huge for being only three days old...take a look (Sister Lilly keeps calling her Allie... haha I'm honored):

Wobbly Wegs Wittle One... what a beautiful baby!!!

That's all for now! Thanks for reading (speaking of reading, I just finished The Help...SO good, I couldn't put it down)!

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