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Showing posts from March, 2009

It's Always a Holiday!

Right now it's the holiday time called Navratri. This happens 2 times a year in our area of South Asia - in the beginning of Summer and the beginning of Winter. This one is called Vasant Navaratri. This holiday lasts for 9 days. For this holiday, people do special fasting and they worship a goddess called Durga. They are only supposed to eat one time a day, so in some markets they set up tents and feed people. I was in a busy market yesterday and they had this tent set up. They blow a conch horn to tell everyone that they're ready to serve, and people get in line to eat.
I want you to notice the lack of Personal Space here :) Most of the people in line don't know each other, but yet they are REALLY close to each other :) You see, if they leave a space between them and the person in front of them (especially in a food line), then someone will get in that space :) So, you have to be close together. That, and their idea of personal space is WAY smaller than the American idea…

Funny Things - "I'm not sure what to say about this" Edition

OK, so this is something that is very common... it's something that I see almost every day... You see, people here LOVE Bollywood. They love the movies, they love the actors, they love the actresses, they REALLY love the songs, they love the dancing... well, you get the picture. Anyway, a large number of rickshaw drivers (maybe even a majority of them) have pictures of Bollywood stars stuck on their rear-view mirrors. They are usually cut out into a heart shape... If you were a guy in America and had a heart cut-out of Brad Pitt or something on your rear-view mirror, your guy friends would totally make fun of you!....
.... But if they lived here, they would totally show you their Tom Cruise :)
hahaha! it totally cracks me up!!

Threading

Threading is something that I learned about when I moved to South Asia.  I hadn't heard about it before I actually saw one of my friends get it done.  It actually originated in Iran and carried over to the rest of Asia pretty quickly and is now even becoming popular in the US.    So what is threading?  Well, it's pretty much a method of removing hair.   In South Asia, they use it mostly to fix eyebrows and to get off other unwanted facial hair.  They use a thread and hold one end in their mouth and use both hands and rip out the hair at the folicle.  They can remove a whole row of hair at a time this way.  It's pretty crazy and it's supposed to be more painful than waxing.  Here's a video of it below: It's only a short clip, but if you want to see more check out Another Short Threading Video.  

Jaya's Engagement!

My good friend Jaya (Mayank's sister that lives in M-town) - just got engaged!  On Sunday, I took the trip to M-town to go to her Engagement Ceremony (or Ring Ceremony).  It was a lot of fun :)!   First Stop - Beauty Parlor!  We walked a little ways down the street to a lady's house.  The beauty parlor was in one of the rooms in her house.  Jaya had already been to her house that morning to get her hair done, but now it was time for the makeup.  This beauty parlor was interesting because it only had 2 light bulbs in the whole room (and they were the energy saver kind that were dimmer than the regular ones), so it wasn't that bright inside the room.   Here's a pic of Jaya in the chair getting her makeup done.   Notice that her hair is crimped.  They use the crimper on people's hair when it's a special occasion - awesome!!! They put a bindi on her head and then the lady painted more and made it super fancy. Here's the finished product (after 1.5 hours)!  She loo…

Holi Happenings!

Today was Holi! It was a pretty mild Holi for us... it was pretty calm in our neighborhood this year. The Capital is a lot calmer than M-town, and our neighborhood is pretty calm too. (If you want to look at past Holi blogs, click here!) Holi is a very unique holiday. It's a holiday where both kids and adults alike smear colored powder on each other, pour buckets of dye on each other and throw water balloons. You can cover a complete stranger in dye and they can't get mad. It's pretty unique. Here's a pic below of a guy selling Holi supplies: Another thing that makes this holiday unique is it's one of two holidays here in our part of South Asia, where a majority of people that celebrate, consume Bhang. Bhang is the large green leaves and flowering shoots of mostly the male cannabis plant... yeah, marijuana. It is most commonly served as a cold drink made with yogurt. They also batter and fry it as well as put it as a little ball in the middle of sweets. There have…

wow!

Today we were out in our rickshaw and I saw this woman. It's very rare to see blue eyes here. There are people here with blue eyes, but it's not very common to see. I thought she looked so cool!

Breakfast!

I'm not a breakfast person... I don't like breakfast foods... I know, I'm weird :) So some days I don't eat breakfast and them I'm hungry again at 10:00 and then I eat and it throws the whole day off :) Well, the other day my friend Kelley had a recipe for some breakfast bars... they sounded good so I thought I'd give them a try:Oat & Almond Breakfast Bars 1/2 c vegetable oil 1/2 c honey 2 tsp vanilla extract 1 lg egg 2 c old-fashioned oats, uncooked 3/4 c all-purpose flour 1/2 c packed light brown sugar 1/2 c sliced almonds (if you can’t slice them, then chop or grind) 1/2 c toasted wheat germ 1/2 c raisins
Optional:
½ cup Mini Chocolate Chips (highly recommended)
Walnuts 3/4 tsp salt
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 13" by 9" metal baking pan with nonstick foil (If not using nonstick, lightly grease foil). 2. In 2-cup liquid measuring cup, stir oil, honey, vanilla, and egg until mixed. In large bowl, with fork, mix oats, flour, sugar, almonds, wheat ge…