Thursday, February 07, 2008

Passage to India – Part IV

As promised, I would like to walk you through our entry to Vrindavan. My grasp of the language isn’t 100%, but my wife could make out most of it. We ask our driver to stop at Vrindavan on the way back to Delhi, but he is kind of hesitant. Finally he agrees as it is not too far. I assume his apprehensions had to do with people banging on the car when we went through the toll. There was a quite zealous crew of “guides” who were demanding 20 rupees for there service. It got to the point that they threatened our driver saying they would get 20 rupees from him if he didn’t convince us we needed a guide. Anyway we got harassed and jostled the entire 10 minute walk in and did not find the peace we were looking for in that spot, but that is how it goes sometimes.

The journey home was long, but we did get in about 9:00 PM and got a good night’s sleep. Monday was a casual day in. Ratna did a little shopping, but for the most part we hung out at home. It was fun spending time with my Dad and getting his insights on how India has changed. My Mom returned from Amritsar late that evening along with Anita Masi.

Tuesday night was dinner at Daman Mama’s. It was fun to meet Laisha along with the other guests and the food was very good. I especially enjoyed the appetizers.

Wednesday was carpet shopping day. My family has developed a fondness for hand stitched rugs. My Mom purchased her first one nearly 25 years ago. My Sister purchased a silk rug about 7 years ago. As we have recently bought a new home, I figured it was time we took a look. There is a dizzying array of designs and fabrication methods from silk versus wool, single versus double knotted and a multitude of colors. The trade-off comes down to intricacy of design and durability. You see carpets not only hanging, but under the indoor lights and under natural lighting in the courtyard. The attached photo is a few rugs displayed in the courtyard. After two hours we settled on a daily use wool rug. It was actually fabricated in Gujarat as opposed to Kashmir or other regions. After being packed this monstrosity weighs around 30 kg so I was happy my Mom was willing to ship it for us. The evening was topped off with dinner at MerCurries for Nikhils birthday.

Diya had quite the time in India after we slowed down her malaria medication. She enjoyed a variety of foods including spinach, dahl, wheat biscuits and cookies. She also seemed to be on a pretty good sleep pattern and did not mind sleeping with us instead of having her crib. She was also quite fond of my cousins as would be expected.

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