Saturday, May 31, 2008

Shiny Clothes & Grimey Walls

So, through many of my blog posts you've seen many different South Asian clothing styles... There's the sari, the different kinds of suits, Kurtas, etc.... But what I haven't introduced you to are the awesome outfits that South Asians put on their kids... I was at the Market the other day and was buying a few little clothing items for Aashini and the guy that I usually buy from told me he had something that I should get for her... He pulled out this outfit... It was super tack-fabulous (tacky) - and very sparkly... AND it was only $1 for the outfit, so I thought - haha! why not!? So I bought it... I want Aashini to fit in with the culture here, right? haha!! So here it is!!....
Oh yeah, it's awesome!
And, on another note... it's still raining here!!! It hasn't rained in a couple of days now, so i think we might be back to normal - but we've been having WAY more rain than normal!! Usually in May, we have 17 mm of rain... but this year we've had 164 mm!!!!!!!!!! Crazy! Anyway, when you live in a super dry area of the country (like we do) and then you get a lot more rain... well, there are consequences... Our walls for example:
They're actually worse than that now... and they're starting to stink.... So, as much as I hate to say this (and will hate myself later for saying this)... BRING ON THE SUN!! (I need to dry out my walls!!!) :)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Cricket ROCKS!

I love going to fun sporting events... Our country has a cricket team and sometimes they play other cricket teams from other countries, and SOMETIMES there is a game in our city, but we've never been able to catch a game UNTIL....The Donald Trump of our country decided that we needed to have professional cricket teams in all the major cities and have them play in their own league during the "off season"... Brilliant! Our city's team is called the Daredevils! I've been watching it in the paper and so, we decided that we had to catch a game! This first season has been about 3 months and a lot of the games our out of town, but this past Saturday night we were able to catch a game! Currently we're borrowing a friend's car who is in the states, so all 9 of us that were going to the game piled up in the car and went!
I was sooo impressed with the stadium! I was a little scared before we went because I looked up the stadium capacity online and it said: "It is said to hold 60,000"... I wasn't sure what that meant, but the stadium was great and everything was super organized!!! The only problem is that you can't bring in cameras... so all of these pics are Mandy's pics from her cell phone :) Thanks Mandy!
For any of you that know a little about Cricket, you know that games can be REALLY long (if you don't know anything about cricket and want to learn, click here: Cricket)... But these games are Twenty20 games - which means that they only play two innings and the game is only about 3 hours long, so it's perfect! Here are some of the guys at the game... The signs are to use when cheering if your team scores 6 or 4 points...
Something funny happened that we weren't expecting... The fans were great and they actually cheered for both teams!! I guess because both teams are from our county and they've never had teams like this before in our country - it was funny!
The only problem was that poor little Aashini didn't have a good time... Every time people would cheer it would scare her and she would scream... She was really upset...
So I took her home a little early...
But man, was it cool! AND our city's team WON!!! 176 to 179!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Hennarific!!!

Emily wanted to get Mehendi (henna) done one last time before she left, so we took a trip to the market the morning they left to get it done :) Here's Emily getting her hands done.Here's my hand (below)... I only got one hand done so that it would be easier to get our bags and ourselves back home :)
The finished products! :)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Deconstruction!

So, our neighbors are tearing down their house... In America if there is a house near you doing construction, then you might hear a little bit of hammering and sawing and things like that during the day.... As you can see, our houses are a lot closer together than most in America... our walls are connected! Do you see the white wall on the right in the picture below? That's our house :) haha! It's been funny to feel the vibrations (and the loud sounds) as they're using sledge hammers to destroy the existing house. You can't imagine how loud it is!!! Luckily it doesn't bother us... after about a day of it we were able to tune it out! haha!
On another deconstruction kind of note... remember our Mangoes ? The tree that hangs over our balcony was growing mangoes... Now, most of them are gone! Even before they ripened! The neighbors said that those mangoes won't ever get sweet enough, so they're only good as green mangoes (they use them for cooking like vegetables)... So how are they getting them down?? In the pic below you can sort-of see how they do it. They make these really long sticks and tie a hook at the end of it and yank them down! haha!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

A Couple More...

So I had a few more pics that I wanted to post - they crack me up! So this is me and my buddy - and fellow FSU graduate - Cortney... She's a South Asian Super Hero... She's "DUPATTA MAMA!" (Dupattas are the scarf-like things we wear around our necks).... her weapons are a spatula (every good South Asian Woman has one), a Drum and an ironing board :) haha! I have a cat puppet... I know... weird! haha!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Jet Laggin?

So, some girls are in town to 'hang' with us for a while :) So what do you do when a bunch of girls come in to town?... well, you do some clothes shopping, nose piercing and bangle shopping! This is my FAVORITE bangle shop! It's AWESOME!
Look how cool they are!!!! Anyway, we tired them out all day yesterday shopping and all day today doing other things... that's the best way to get over jet lag... just hit the ground running and don't stop until bed time :) It works pretty well, but it can also make everyone a little loopy...
So here's a jet lag picture :) haha!So, a closet full of really funny South Asian Clothes + no sleep = funny pictures :)
I seriously have over a hundred pictures... it was very funny :)

Sunday, May 11, 2008

HaPpY MoThEr's DaY!!

Adam loves making me construction paper cards :) He started a tradition last year of making a Mother's Day card for me every year... here's last year's card (you can see our little Jellybean in the picture):And here's this year's card! It's so fun! It's us hanging out in the pool (which I'm hoping to do today if it stops raining - which I'm not complaining about - I LOVE rain and we aren't supposed to have rain until August - so it's great to cool things down!)... Anyway...
HERE'S THE CARD!!!

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Swimming Fun :)

OK, so one of the most prestigious jobs that a girl here can get is a job as an 'Air Hostess' (aka - flight attendant, stewardess, etc). They have a school here in country that is famous for training Air Hostesses. It's Called FrankFin. They train them for everything they need to know to be an Air Hostess. They learn about aviation, personal grooming and fitness, how to operate the computer system that everyone uses for reservations, and a ton of other stuff... including.............. SWIMMING!!Usually when I go swimming in the mornings, there are girls and guys from FrankFin there taking their swimming classes. I've been able to meet some great girls. Today was different though... When I got to the pool, all the girls and guys were standing by the deep end in their FrankFin uniforms (as seen in the pics), with their swim caps on (and swimming costumes underneath)... I thought it was a little odd... but figured they were just meeting about something ...
but then.....
One of the girls (wearing her button-down shirt, mini skirt and neck scarf) gets on the diving block... the teacher blows the whistle AND SHE DIVES IN!!! Clothes and all!!! Next, a guy got up... wearing a nice button-down shirt, dress pants and a necktie - AND DIVES IN!!!
I asked a girl next to me what was going on... apparently they were having their final examinations for swimming. At first I thought, maybe there was some sort of rule that they had to always wear their uniforms during exams and that's why they were swimming in their uniforms... but it's probably so that they know how to swim in it in case of an air emergency (when the plane lands in water... does that ever happen?)...
Anyway, it was one of those days when I was shooting myself for not having my camera! OK, look at the people in the pic below and try to picture it...
.... girls dressed up nice in these uniforms trying to swim... OK, it was hilarious!!!! I wish I had a picture... :)

Monday, May 05, 2008

Swimming Fun!

OK, so a few of these pictures are quite embarrassing (like this first one) but oh well :) haha!
My favorite way to exercise is swimming!! I've always loved water! It's so great!! I've been really looking for ways to exercise here. It's so hot that the regular ways I exercised before just aren't working for me - I've tried walking, running, taebo, etc... but it's just so HOT!! and I just can't motivate myself to exercise when it's that hot! (Last night at 8:00 pm it was 103 degrees!). Anyway, I found a swimming pool that is pretty close by that I joined!! This pool is AWESOME!! It's actually pretty huge! The width of the pool is about the same as the length of pools that are considered "Olympic size" (which one of my FSU professors said that there was no such thing as an 'Olympic size')...
Now, you're actually not allowed to take pictures at the pool (which is a good thing because if they didn't have that rule then guys would be taking tons of pics of the girls) but I was sneeky and took a few pics... Anyway, most pools around the country have specific times that girls can swim and times that guys can swim (and it's usually random 2 hour periods during the day)... and they have tons of hours that they're closed (usually during the hottest times of day). BUT this pool is open 6 am - 10 pm!! and is open 7 days a week! AND guys and girls can swim whenever (which makes for some funny experiences)... I've learned which times of day are the best times to go - when there are less people (like in the picture above) - It's actually pretty fun because most of the people there are girls that are trying to become 'air hostesses' and are taking swim classes.... so I get to meet a lot of fun people :)
Anyway, I got a membership this month and so far I've gone 5 out of the 6 days of my membership and I love it!! I can bring Adam in with a guest fee, so him and Aashini have come with me a couple of times...The people at the pool have freaked out about us bringing Aashini in the pool... I guess they aren't used to people doing that - they weren't sure what to say :) Aashini loves it though (I'll try to sneak another picture soon). She'll sit in her little raft and kick and kick! She loves it! The other day when we took her swimming - we totally wore her out!
Now, here comes the fun part....
SWIMMING COSTUMES!!!
They don't call them swim suits here... they're called costumes! It's actually a pretty good word for them :) They really look a lot like the swimsuits in America in the 1920s... Most people wear costumes like the pic below. It has sleeves, skirt AND shorts. The women really dress modestly. Sometimes they'll have long sleeves or long shorts/pants with their costume. Some girls will wear long sleeved shirts under their costume or leggings under it as well. It's quite modest...
Now guys on the other hand...
They are the total opposite! They wear the skimpiest clothes! haha! They LOVE speedos... Most guys wear "bikini-cut" speedos - yeah, pretty gross.... some wear regular speedos, some wear short bike shorts and some wear their underwear.... Now, I don't have a picture of this, but this picture (below) is from the front page of the paper not too long ago will give you the idea...
And last, but not least :) - my costume. The pool we're at is more modern, so you don't have to have sleeves if you don't want to and you have the choice of shorts OR a skirt.... When I started at the pool I had to buy a costume there. They gave me a lot of choices of suits with skirts - but I just couldn't see myself in them... so I went with a costume with shorts... haha! Funny thing about this suit... I wore it backwards the first two times I went swimming ;)... so here it is..

oh yeah, I have to wear a swim cap too- cute isn't it?

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Being Nose-y :)

Today Emily & I went to get our noses pierced. This was actually my third time getting my nose pierced - haha! Long story... but we went to the store to get it pierced (same guy who pierced mine the other two times) :) Emily decided to go first...
It's a little different to get your nose pierced here than in America. They don't have piercing guns... they just use the nose ring and some pliers :)I think I look silly... haha!
OK, and here's the final product (no, I'm not crying, it just makes my eye water :))
Afterwards we went to Costa Coffee for lunch :)... and we took another picture - this picture is really funny! haha! :)