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Indian Potpourri IIISouth was simply superb. Josh had reached God's own country-Kerala. The profusely viridiscent landscapes glided past in slow motion as he ferried the lakes. There is the immensely variegated boat race festival known as Onam. Long boats are oared by brown, sinewy men-each one vying to win the race. The women dress in white and gold, slowly sway, carrying small mud lamps around colorful patterns drawn on the ground with powders in every imaginable color called Kolams also called rangolis in the north.
Huge elephants are indispensable during Onam. The pachyderms are scrubbed by the proud, smiling Mahouts in lakes and then adorned with red and gold brocade and paraded with howdahs (saddles).This is the land of Kathakali,the indescribably complex, holy and radiant dance-danced by an all male cast. They sit for hours together and paint their faces predominantly with greens, reds, black and yellow and emote subtly yet articulately displaying a plethora of histrionics-pomp, pain, piety and pur
Indian potpourri IIKarnataka- the painted sign proclaims (in three languages).The train grinds to a halt. The smell of metal is in the air. It's been a grimy journey. But eagerness and anticipation fills Josh Hartlett as he has reached Bangalore (Bengalooru)-all cosmopolitan. The itinerary says it was known as the pensioner's paradise a few years ago. However urbanity has hit it and made it more urban than most other cities. It is inhabited by a few foreigners. It was easy for Josh to see why. Its temperature was more pleasant than other cities.
It is also known as the garden city. It has plenty of greenery. But it was sad as he realized that pollutants are taking their toll. There were the green, cool gardens- Lal Bagh, Cubbon Park-to name a few. He found decent food in Bangalore- Pizzerias, McDonalds, and KFC… Quaint British villas hobnobbed with huge skyscrapers.
He found most people speaking good English, Hindi and Kannada.
This is known as the Silicon Valley. He found colossal IT parks with delegate
Indian potpourriIndian food was at first unpalatable. Josh had been on an All India trek.He tried the Northern food that was available in every little shanty called Dhabas. It was mainly from a place called Punjab (lit. the land of five rivers). He grew to relish it. They offered bread made in a tandoor (a pot like oven).Fresh, hot and delicious. He tried tandoori murg (spicy chicken cooked in the tandoor), and kofta curries (vegetables/cheese, meat balls smothered in thick spicy gravies), kebabs (skewered edibles), Biriyanis (spiced rice) along with a generous supply of raw onions, curd, green chillies and lime wedges. The spices they used were mainly was garlic, onions, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, peppers, cashews….
Kashmiri food boasted of fruit-both dry and fresh .He began to enjoy Kashmiri pilaf (rice cooked with pieces of fresh and dry fruit) and naans and kulchas (pancake bread sprinkled with fruit as well) and ghosht (meat mainly mutton).Gujarati and Rajasthani food was succulent even in its b
Teenage TaoismGiving birth is the closest I’d ever felt to dying.
Before that, my near death experiences had consisted only of my silent announcement of pregnancy—silent, being that my social media accounts were all deleted almost simultaneously and I never returned to school in the fall, saying without really saying that I had caught the malicious disease of “teenage pregnancy”. I’m sure the whisper spread in the hallways like the Bubonic Plague. That September, sitting at home on what would have been the first day of my senior year, I imagined friends I’d never talk to again saying “she was only seventeen, and so full of life!” at my absence in the cafeteria tables, as if they were attending my funeral instead of talking about me behind my back.
"Full of life," I had snorted then, folding a never ending stream of what had once been my own baby clothes. "Literally."
I walked around like a zombie for the months of my pregnancy, deciding t
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