Wednesday, November 5

Watching the Election from Abroad

So, this is a huge day for our country!!! We elected a new president, an African-American from Arab and muslim background, though he's Christian, and I personally think it's a great choice. I am so frustrated to not be there, I want to be celebrating and high fiving strangers. But unfortunately I'm stuck here, where people watch, but not as much. I watched live coverage all night on Indian news sources, which were hilarious to say the least. They had very conflicting, and very wrong info, and my favorite was their composite photos of a white obama and a black mccain. I am so excited to see where our new president takes us, and even if you didn't vote for him, or hate him, you have to admit his acceptance speech was phenomenal, and moving as hell. I had to watch it at an internet cafe, but I still teared up and got goosebumps. I believe people will be proud to be American again, and that's a good day. It sucks to be abroad, but I can be because I live in such a great country, and I'm glad we're just taking it further!

A Family Affair

So, I went to a family affair! I've been left out always, only the boys have been invited, but I got invited! We went to the baby shower of Mrs. Bandhu. And I wore my saree. It was beautiful. It's interesting, the baby shower was just for family, consisted of lunch, a small religious ceremony and tea time. I saw wedding pictures, and people kind of talked to me, but for the most part they just talked about me in Hindi. And it was condescending. Very. You can tell. Although one girl called me sundar, which means beautiful. I dunno, it was nice, the families are very close knit, very attentive to children, but not very warm or open. They did let me feed the couple as part of the religious ceremony. It was great to see, but not looking to jump into that situation again. They really were quite nice, but they obviously thought I was not too smart, and although some of them really were very nice, I think they were just interested cause I was different. If I spoke Hindi, it would be different, but they automatically decided not to like me because I didn't. They even talked about it in Hindi. Luckily half of conversations are in English, so I knew what they were saying. Sigh, I can't wait for people to like america again.

Phones: Part Deux

Ok, so I hate getting anything done here, lol. The girls had to get new sim cards, so we took them to the market, and it took, of course, an hour. It was kind of ridiculous. They had to call Bandhu, they said they had to make sure we were real people. They said they didn't believe the German's passport was real because it didn't have her address. Neither does a U.S. one. They tried to misquote the price. It was insane. I know this is just another bad story, but it's so frustrating!!! And now they are gone to Gurgaon for culture week, and I'm all alone. Literally. But not for long! Tomorrow I go to to Pushkar, then immediately to Goa, then immediately to NEW YORK.

The New Girls

So, yet another crazy story. Two girls came to the house, from an orphanage they've been staying at for the past month. One from France, one from Germany. Bandhu told us they had boys in the room. Turns out they went to the internet for 1 1/2 hours. They came back and no one would answer the door, so France climbed over and asked for the keys. The owner of the orphanage leans over his balcony, and starts screaming, yelling about where they were. Granted they asked to go. He freaks out, keeps yelling, starts calling them ungrateful, takes their sim card and breaks it, almost hits them, calls them terrible people.

Kicks them out for their last 2 days, sends them back to Bandhu and lies about why. It was ridiculous. Bandhu believed him, still does, and is a wimp, won't talk to the guy, wouldn't even pick them up because he was scared of the guy. I hate how unconfrontational people are here. If they are going to get money, they keep their mouths shut, and they always believe each other. I HATE that. And if they had been boys, it would be different.

Advantage, I love these girls, we get along super well, and we're going to Pushkar together! Everything happens for a reason, even awful Indian experiences.

Survival Question

Walking around here makes you wonder. People must do anything to survive here, and perhaps it is why people seem so selfish to us. They are obsessed with money, it seems to be all anyone talks about, and this makes sense when it's a constant worry. People do so much, with so little return, and I begrudge those who try to cheat me. I don't know it's so hard, to know what you feel for, what you do. You can't give beggars money because they learn it works and they won't go to work. You harden yourself against the slum in your backyard. If you do give them food they mob you and get violent. And how much of my humanity do I guard and turn off so as not to be scarred by it all? By every child dirty and missing a limb becase their parent cut it off to get more begging money (yes this is common) I don't kow. But it's a very hard question to be faced with. I'll let you know what I decide.

Puppies!!!...Womp, womp

So, the happiest thing ever happened!! We found puppies in sector 15 market. They're very little, very cute, and very playful. Luckily they haven't learned to fear humans yet, so I could pet them. They are soooooo cute!!! Gosh I love puppies. There are three, and they are white, golden, and dark brown. I love them to death and visit them every day.

However, the other day, I came to visit and the white one had been runover by a car. The blood wasn't even coagulated. It was awful and sad. And a metaphor for India. Even if you find something to make you happy, a small satisfaction, the truth is you're helpless to change the reality of life here. And it's depressing.

Today I cam to the market and another puppy was dead. Probably from disease, no sign of trauma. Haven't seen the other for a week, so who knows if he's alive.

However, I saw three new puppies near the house, super super tiny, the size of my hand, and they love me! Tried to suckle my fingers, and all they wanted was pets and to lean against me. I love them, and even though I know their outlook is grim, I can't help but be hopeful for them. More metaphor? Pretty much.

Another one bites the dust

So, we got a new volunteer, an older woman named Laurie. She spent the last 2 weeks in India touring, and now she's here for 2 weeks to volunteer in schools. Or at least she was. She left after two days. She felt useless, she couldn't handle the conditions, and like everyone balked at the lack of structure and ability to help. Bandhu didn't seem to take it too well, but what are you gonna do, all of us experience this, and are told it can't change because then they'd lose the orphanages, and then where would they send people, because they can't say no to people, cause then they wouldn't get as much money. Depressing? Yes. Surprising? No. And again, another leaves early. So far, not a great track record.