Thursday, March 04, 2010

Mid-Week Thoughts on India

Amber is in India through Saturday at which point she'll begin the long journey home. RDU arrival is Sunday morning, and naturally, I'm highly anticipating her return. The cat, too.

So, here are some random thoughts on India, grabbed from our brief phone calls. Actually...let's start there! When you're 10½ hours apart (Indian Standard Time is UTC+05:30), finding a time in which I'm at home and Amber is in her hotel room, and we're both awake, is difficult. But, we figured it out: our conversations typically happen after she wakes up, which is at about 7:00 AM India time / 8:30 PM Eastern time. There's always a way.

Here are Amber's impressions of India, at least as far as I've gathered:
- Based on one taxi ride from the airport to the hotel, the roads are crazy. You think rushhour in your city is bad? You think the drivers in your hometown are idiots? Your city has nothing on New Delhi. (Side note: last week, I said that if I had a week in India with nothing to do, I would rent a car and check out their roads. I didn't really mean that. If I ever have a week in India with nothing to do, that means I messed up.)
- Construction workers don't wear hard hats. Between that and the traffic issues, personal safety doesn't seem to be much of a thing here. So how is it that so many people are still alive in this country?
- There is a copy of the Bhagavad Gita in her hotel room. (I had to look up what that was.)
- India has lots of slums, which anyone who has seen Slumdog Millionaire (we have not) already knows. I'd go see it for myself, but unfortunately, Google Street View has yet to make its way to India. Meanwhile, the hotel where Amber is staying is about as nice as hotels get. Where's the in-between?
- Neither of us is a fan of Indian food, but rest assured, you can always get a plain piece of chicken. Sometimes.
- Cows are considered sacred in India (or, at least, by Hindus). But while cows are not eaten, they are still milked. After a dairy cow's career is over, cows are sent to some kind of "cow retirement center". No, that's not supposed to be a euphemism for "place where they kill them off", ala Bovine University. They don't do that in India - cow slaughter is illegal in almost every Indian state. What I meant is, the cows go to a place where they can quietly live out their lives. Maybe "cow old folks home" is a more appropriate term.
- It's hot there. (New Delhi's latitude is about the same as Orlando, and is only 700 feet above sea level.)

So, yeah. That's our impression of India, based on a few phone conversations, a short taxicab ride, and a few Wikipedia articles. It's probably all wrong, but I don't care.


amber said...

"If I ever have a week in India with nothing to do, that means I messed up."

Hahahahaha I love you.

Jeff said...

Best. Episode. Ever.