Dawn with classmates
For a portion of the time that Kalani's class is in Delhi, Kekai's class (and one above and one below) took a bus trip to Wayanad district, Kerala. They left on Friday morning (6am!) and will be home tonight. Tim and I took advantage of the extra time to make a trip to MM Hills for some more data collection and GPS mapping of the villages. Kekai seemed excited for the trip but since he wasn't allowed to bring a cell phone, we don't know how it's gone.
Kalani & his friends in their train berth
Kalani's growing up. Yesterday we put him on a train with kids from his class and the two classes above him (tho, small school so the last class is kids up to about 10th grade). It was a bit nerve-wracking since the teacher/chaperones were some of the last to arrive but the kids were all excited. They'll be on the train for 44.5 hours and arrive in Delhi tomorrow morning. Kalani's got 7 days in Delhi and surrounds, then a 36-hour train ride back, arriving in Bangalore on the night of 21 December. If you want to see where he is in real time, go to this link and type in 12629 (for Delhi bound train) or 12650 for his return train (click on the train name that appears below the search box (he left Dec 11 and will leave Delhi Dec 19), you may want to have Google Earth open).
Had a good birthday celebration. Tim and the boys bought me a cake (it says "Happy Birthday Ma" in Kannada) with the best candle I've ever seen. It went up like a pine tree on fire, then the petals opened into a lotus with candles at the tips. Pretty darn cool. Not so cool was that it didn't start playing "Happy Birthday" in plingy computereze until sometime in the middle of the night and then it took 12 hours to figure out how to shut it up for more than a few minutes at a time (final solution: pull all the wires). Also got lunch at one of Bangalore's two breweries (Kalani had his first hamburger since leaving the US) and walked through the ritziest mall in Bangalore (Louis Vuitton, anyone?). Sure is a different world than the one I'm calling home these days. The boys also got me some jingly silver anklets (pics below).
I recognize 3 of the 5 veggies here
I'm getting better at buying leaves and am developing a relationship with the sopu guy. Today as I tentitively went thru my list ("um, palak, and, um, kothumbre, and, uhm....") he asked (in Kannada & sign language) if I wanted a mixture. "Ok." So here's today's Rs 30 of vegetables. Not sure what most of them are, but I'm looking forward to learning how to cook them.
It seems a little pedestrian to write about beer in my Fulbright blog but I have to say, I really love beer. Qualify that, I love good beer. On Saturday Tim and I took his bike and went out in search of a micro-brewery that he'd learned about. The poor kids had a make-up day at school but I needed a break from the drudge of the computer so we decided to run some needed errands then go in search of the pub which was located in a neighborhood we'd never been to.
I was interviewed the other night about absentee voting from Bangalore and the article came out in today (Sunday)'s paper.
First, know before you start: it won't be cheap. Bangalore has some of the highest rents in the country.
Next look at available flats. You are probably going to need to go through an agent to find anything. The rents advertised in the paper are not really what they're renting for, be prepared to be told that those are last month's rates and the rental for the same flat is now at least 10% higher.
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