Swedish Knitblogger who loves spinning, knitting, dyeing and yarn. I will do some other roundabouts about life too.
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
OT (no knitting) -Report from India
After a great week - first visiting Pune (where this picture is taken - thanks Bernard), and then roaming around New Dehli. I must say Im both in awe (lotus temple, etc) and in resignation (pollution, and germs) with things here. This is normal trash picture from side of the road. They act medival, with no regards for consequences. India looks like a trash-dump! Even when we were eating in small aluminium boxes on the hired bus, the busdriver basically dumped this outside the bus on a stop - at a very clean and fancy hotel. Ok Inside these places - inside the gate of hotels, the workplace etc, it is just clean as a whistle, and after this messy week in the eastern Dehli, I must say the modern IT buildings where my work is placed -Gurgaon, is tons better...Anyhow, organised chaos. I learned that a five minute "bathroom break" is easily 1 hour stop, with "snacks" turning into a full buffe.... Maybe because we had great organizers. Going on the wrong (ok left) side of the road zig-zacking between cars, small taxis, people crossing, no respect for lanes, bycycles, cows, lorrys in a Honking mess of 17 million people makes it an adventure just to go anywhere or do anything. Especially on your own. But mostly - Indians will take care of you. Really. They are so spiritual and nice. I have had one hour shopping, hardly any sleep, and today shopping would be possible, but all malls are closed tuesdays to save energy (ok, they are trying!). Having spend life in a internet-less area, with the power timing out every half our for 5 minutes (and sometimes not always going on immediately)... well, lets say it is hot here. and if you were not tired before - the heat will get to you. Im glad Im now in an interent zone, giving this to you. Thankfully, aircondition or fans is almost everywhere, making conversations unbearable. My conference last week, was partly in Pune, and then at Raj Ghat where the conference and big meeting of 41 countries were held. (Pic: Im on the right!) Ok, we could not STAY at the place (as originally planned) for goverment were wiser and offered the place to my Biggest spiritual guide and guru - the Vietnamese Zen Buddist Munk nicknamed Thay occupided the place with his followers. I just wished I had no duties, and actuallyI was invited to join in the Ashram with them, but that will be AFTER my PhD... LOL! I had to do with other spiritual fun parts..And on the Sunday we were visiting the Taj Mahal in Agra, a neat busride 17.9 km from New Dehli - and with their roads taking 4 hours - but reality - starting 6 o clock in the morning - we reach Agra at 1 in the afternoon. Well.... Now I belong to the people who have seen the Taj... A big marble achievement. Fab and that they built this so long ago. Of course my I got Deli-belli, and only Immodium acted like a temporary plug. Can you imagine sitting for HOURS on a bus with an uneasy belly? I mean, you do not know explosions if you have not had one. Im of course a lot better compared to last time visiting Chennai, when I had to battle both ends ;-) So, when we were visitning Qutb Minar and the Iron Pillar my belly erupted. I spare you the details, but I tell you, you do not want to be anywhere than in an very expensive hotel when this happens. The Qutb Minar is such an achievement like Lego, built with no mortar, concrete or anything. And is a solar device. Just amazing. The guide was really funny, he said Indians were really thankful to the English... from where they got: Administration, Tea, Cricket and tipping ;-) The Ironpillar is just an old iron pole, that is supposed to bring luck if you hold your arms around it backwards. Now it is protected (so you cant have luck) for fear of the residue with break the iron down, but many believe the oil of peoples hands is the reason it is not rusting. Well, Im no expert there. Pollution is pretty bad in Dehli, and tourist eruption definitely adds!! Anyhow, The Fashion week in India is colorful. Check out: Manish Arora and his Clowns. That sums up the creative chaos. All the fantastic SARI's the women are so colourful... But they have to be, to be seen in this haze of diesel. I have been knitting on my sock and at least inspired the Norweigan candidate to go for socks (hey - she had just not thought about looking for free patterns on the web!), but have not found any yarn yet or beads... which I know India has to a bargain price and in loads. Last day and chance tomorrow, but Im not sure hunting around the market with a big suitcase is the best. Maybe If I find a great taxi-driver....Well, Im ok! No worries except the mygg/mosqito?, ah.. you know those biting little suckers.... that could contain malaria??? Yes I have been in the country. I have bites all over - even if I was covered with spray... So far so good. Lets hope for the best! I just have to end this with a quote from Nhat Hanh: "Breathing in, I calm my body. Breathing out, I smile. Dwelling in the present moment, I know this is a wonderful moment!" from Peace is Every Step - The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life! Hugs from a very cool, clean and somewhat odd small hotel in Gurgaon, India.