Monday, January 24, 2011

pickles

After parting company with my Auntie Swamiji, I had few opportunities to socialize with wealthy Indians or Indians of the higher classes. Of course, young people and teenagers from all social echelons will go to parks, beaches, coffee houses, etc, but for the most part, wealthier and higher-class Indians do not go outside in the heat, or sit around in public places. Unless I was attending a special function or eating at an upscale restaurant, the majority of my encounters were with working class or poor Indian people.

I did have a most enjoyable encounter with a lovely lady from Andhra Pradesh. I was eating at the Saravana Bhavan in Munnar, when this lovely lady, who was traveling with her family, began sharing her delicious homemade pickles with the other diners at the restaurant. (Tomato, ginger, and gooseberry pickles - the ginger was especially delightful.)

Another time at another restaurant, a heavy-set woman in an ornate saree approached me and said,
"Where are you coming?"

Confused, I didn't answer, only caught myself staring at the cinnamon colored rolls of her belly peeking out from the side of her saree. She repeated herself more loudly as if I were deaf,
"WHERE ARE YOU COMING?"
"The United States," I responded.
Satisfied, she said, "Obama," and turned away.

1 comment:

Ilene said...

Roger and I are sitting on ILENE reading your posts. The night is balmy...the stars are so abundant as we are in a quiet anchorage off the town of Roseau, Dominica. You are a beautiful writer and I can feel India through your words. I especially liked your phrase: feathery memories. Thanks for the poetry.