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Jun. 12th, 2007

Morris Dancing!
With Muddies!
And other peoples!
Awesome peoples!
And Kickball!
Big-Ass-Van travel!
I'd never been to Ontario before!
New Facebook friends!

I had a good weekend, I hope everyone else did too.
But I have to work in the morning at 6:30. Darn their eyes.

My head is full of random things.


Will she ever stop with the awesomeness? an album of Agnostic Gospel.

I really like this ridiculously expensive bathing suit.

having taken the box set of this out of the library, I now understand why I kept hearing how I (and everyone else) should have watched it so it would stay on tv. Oh well. Now I have to decide whether I should try to watch the entire thing before I leave tomorrow, or buy it for myself, in which case I don't want to rush it, cause its so good. Sigh.

I can't stop watching these.

this is totally transfixing

click wear it says click here for video. Its brilliant, and yet, totally inane.

a scrub is a guy that can't get no . . .

So today I was walking to the library and enjoying the fine spring weather, when a young fellow leaned out of his car window and yelled something at me. This struck me as significant, because today is four days after I arrived home from India, where I was for just over two months, and it constitutes more sexual harassment than I encountered the entire time I was there. I think this brings up several possibilities to consider. Its is very possible that:
1) I may look particularly fetching today, and am certainly cleaner (and therefore maybe prettier) than I was at any time in India. Indeed, I myself thought my outfit today was quite chic (or at least adorable), but consisting of a sweater vest, white button down shirt and jeans, I don't think anyone would consider it provocative.
2) It is possible that this individual knew me in some way. I did not get a real look at him, nor did I understand what he said. Thus, it is also possible that he was helpfully telling me about a sign stuck to my back or something hanging stuck to my show. But I doubt it.
3) I was incredibly sheltered in India. It is certainly true that I never took a city bus, or any of the really crowded train cars. I also spent quite a lot of my time with ethnically Indian people. But I also walked around by myself a lot, especially in the more crowded old city, ate in restaurants by myself, and generally just lived in the city.
4) Eve-teasing may in real truth be a) significantly diminishing in the last couple of decades all over India and b) not nearly as much an issue in Madurai as in bigger cities and in the North.

But here's the thing. I was continually warned about being a white woman in India. That men would masturbate in public while staring at me, that they would grab me whenever possible and stand in my way on the street, that I would be stared at and assumed to be a whore.
What I experienced was different. Maybe I was naive and not seeing it, maybe I was thick-skinned and not seeing it, but my own personal experience was nothing of the kind. Lots of people stared at me, but it was women as well as men, and especially children. I never felt that anyone assumed I was interested in sex. Men standing in groups on the street would chide each other if one of them did not move out of my way because he didn't see me. I felt that the people I met respected me greatly, although I usually couldn't tell why, except that I was American and youngish and had come to meet them.
I don't know what to make of this. I don't know how to respond when people try to engage me in conversations about it. I don't know what advice I will give to other women who will travel to India. It is clearly an issue, I would hate to discount the experiences of others, but I also want my experience to be heard.

In other news, Blooming Dogwoods would make a really great band name. Especially if some of the band members were British and some were East Coast Americans. And the music was kind of punk-y appalachian ballads or something. yup.


being back in boston and all, Mom and I are going (incredibly late) to the river for celebrating.

good morning!

Live from Delhi

I've arrived here no problem, and everything is lovely, though its a bit odd to adjust to a city where you really need to take taxis to get anywhere, and there are things like McDonalds and pizza shops. Also, I think in the last 3 days here I've seen as many or more white people as I did the entire time I was in Madurai. Admittedly, I've been rather a lot at tourist-type places.

Yesterday I went to Humayun's Tomb, which is a lovely area of old tombs and gardens and things. Humayun was the second Mughal Emperor, but not a very impressive one, and the building was put up by his son, Akbar, after he was gone.

cut without witty text :(Collapse )

And I got pretty sunburnt to a point where I couldn't do much else but sit and drink water last night and this morning. Smart going me!

Last Night in Madurai

Yes, tomorrow morning I'm leaving. Bright and early, and I better get to bed soon. But today has been really nice, with church in the morning and then walking around the city a bit and packing. Also, Sunita and Jethro came to the guesthouse because the celebration hall underneath their flat was being very noisy today and all last night, so I got to say goodbye and have some nice time with them.
And now all thats to do is leave the city where I've achieved some level of comfortability and go somewhere else!

My head is Infested.

and I'm not very happy about it.

I feel kind of silly about it, but I'm also just really grossed out and freaked. Also, the advice I have gotten from everyone (and followed, obviously) seems so different from the American way. I remember hearing about people whose kides got lice having to throw away everything in the bedroom, superheat and then supercool everything, blah blah blah, and all they're telling me to do is wash my hair with this special shampoo every week for four weeks. My understanding is that it stuns the lice, and then when you carefully comb through right afterwards, they just fall out. And they certainly did fall out when I combed. Yuck. Sensible, I guess, but I do think I'm going to try and do it every couple of days, not once a week.
Also, I can't figure out how I got them. Obviously, they could have been in any number of places, and jumped to my head, but its not like I've been wearing hats or rubbing my head against anyone's or anything. I don't know, plus there's a whole stigma of being dirty thing, which, I know, isn't true at all, but still freaks me out a bit.

Anyway, this was supposed to be a post with lots of my pictures from the last while, but I got sidetracked. Some are uploaded already, but I'll post them later, with a little explanation.

Oh, and I have less than a week left here. Its only just hitting me. Then I'll be in Delhi for a little, then home again, home again, clippity clop.

Apr. 3rd, 2007

Today they didn't really know what to do with me at the skill training center, so they painted my hand with henna. Its pretty cool, but I didn't really know what was going on until they pulled my hand up and started painting. It was a bit like having brown icing piped onto me, but it smells different, and dries, and dyes your hand. Yeah, I'm coherent tonight.

It was Sam's last night here before going on to Chennai, so we had dinner and went up one of the Kashmiri shops to look at the temple from above.

Also, tomorrow I start running my first programme alone. Not freaked at all, thats me. But actually, I met with the principal of the school today, and she seemed very nice, and quite forgiving if anything goes horribly horribly wrong.

Mar. 26th, 2007

Well, Erin's gone. I don't know how I feel about it. Obviously, I knew she was going, and so did everyone else, but it still feels a lot like none of us are really prepared, especially with what my programme will be. I'm just a bit freaked, I guess.
But I also think I'm having a really hard time because I haven't had any time until now to deal with myself. In the past week or so, we've just been constantly in one of two modes: Erin's freaking out, or she's temporarily fine and I can't do anything that might make her go back to it.
Anyway, its all me now, and as long as I can figure out my flight situation, I should be fine.

here"s some snaps from latelyCollapse )

ps- can anybody remember all the words to the 'dwarves are short' round?