From Delhi With Love

Posted: July 19, 2011 in Uncategorized

I’m really getting out of touch with this blogging business no? It’s like bloggers block ’cause I’ve been getting into other types of writing lately, poetry and essays and all that jazz. Oh well. It’ll come back soon enough.

Till then let me just update you on a few things.

Firstly, I am cooking like a boss.

Shit, I never knew I’d live to blog those words. Well I knew it would happen some day. But I’m actually making Pulao, which is rice and vegetables tossed in the cooker basically, and these spicy indian curries, and you know, tea and stuff. I have to because the ‘tiffin system’ food here sucks! I need a lot of spice and chilli in my food and this food was so blah. So I got this friend of mine here to teach me.

I have to say, making your own dinner and eating it and finding it tasty and not hazardous to your digestive system, is sorta empowering.

The tiffin lady didn’t like it one bit.

She walked in and sat down in the hall with my friend and me and the landlady and rattled off in Hindi. I didn’t understand most of but after every two lines I knew that she was saying in Hindi, “If you don’t want to eat my food anymore, it’s not a problem! Really! It’s not!” and she’d look at me with this look that was more like “omgz y u no eat my food? u make me cry at nite.”

After she left, I asked my indian friend what that was all about. She’d just shake her head and say, “Indian women! Such drama queens!”

You know, surprisingly, I’m not really homesick. My life is so different here. I live in an apartment, soon to be occupied with four other girls as well, and have to make my own bed, my own tea, my own food, fill the water filter every morning, lock my doors every night. There’s no shower in the bathroom, only a tap at about 4 feet, but I’m too lazy to do the whole bucket thing so I just sit under it. My only connection to life in sri lanka is the internet (thank god for WiFi here). And I do wish I could go flailing at the park with my friends or that I could give my mum a hug sometimes (it’s so wrong to see her boo-hoo on skype!), but I’ve just been shockingly okay, and casual about everything.

Maybe I’m speaking too soon? College only starts on Thursday. I hope my lack of Hindi-speak doesn’t stand in my way and my batchmates and teachers aren’t total dicks or anything. I’m still in vacation mode, and I guess I’ll know how I really feel about living here when the college routine begins. For the other friends who’ve moved abroad promise me that I will have my share of outbursts of homesickness where I’ll be left with my face buried in old photos and crying to sad Coldplay music. *shudder*

There’s a little Pettah-like street a two-minute walk from my apartment – all the stores and boutiques and vendors with your everyday necessities, in a long row. Even a psychiatrist’s practice if the need ever arises! And there’s two small green parks in my apartment block, one even has a swing and a seesaw and the whole works (yes, I did test them out). And there’s a huge park, maybe twice the size of Viharamahadevi about a five-minute walk from where I live, with lots of trees and all that park stuff. You’ll find beggar kids with bleached hair occasionally playing on the swings and old people playing cards on a fresh patch of grass and families eating food on the benches and sometimes even an Araliya tree.

The landlady doesn’t speak much English, and her twelve year old daughter speaks some, so I teach them English and they teach me Hindi.
I’m listening to Hindi music to get me used to the sounds and the syllables, and I secretly love the old ones from the 50s and 60s, so much that I tune in to some indian equivalent of Gold FM to hum along to when I’m bored. And I watched this amazing Hindi movie, Udaan (2010), please go watch it if you’re a movie buff or a writer – it’s an inspirational piece of work, and I promise, no Sharukh Khan and no choreographed dancing in the hills.

There’s a large rooftop outside my apartment, where I go to look at the clouds and the rest of the city, or the moon at night. Get some fresh air, or some perspective.

I don’t know what else to say. I feel like I’m at the railway station, waiting for the train.
On that note, I love ducks, and this is why:

  1. Gehan says:

    all the very best to you! i love how you seem to have taken this whole thing in stride (so far!). yes, once classes start and you realise you’ve been away from home almost 6 months, homesickness may pay you a visit but i have the feeling you’re enjoying your new found freedom there.

    have a great time, and blog as often as you can!

  2. Delilah says:

    have a blast 🙂

  3. Aamina Nizar says:

    Hehe…….You leave me nostalgic Shif! Actually you’ll be fine…I thought I would be homesick too..But I had soo much fun just settling in I didn’t think about it. Yes when you first vacation home comes along, you’ll be dying to get on that plane. Later you will not care about going home so much.

    However, the first three months of college will probably be some of your most memorable. Every day will be exciting and there is so much to see and experience it will overwhelm you. So enjoy it slowly.

    And Gehan went to Manipal i believe. That is removed from civilization and everyone I know who went there cried at first. Big cities are easier to adjust to.

    Anyhow enuf from me..
    Let life engulf you

    • Gehan says:

      yeah, i did go to Manipal! it wasn’t a big city, but since there were so many different colleges there it was sort of a university city, which actually made it a lot easier to forget about home since we were surrounded by students everywhere.. u don’t really feel alone.. I’ve actually heard that the big cities are harder to adjust to, but then perhaps its just up to the person..

      ah the nostalgia!

  4. Dilly says:

    I watched Udaan just a few days back and I LOVED it. 🙂 Hope you keep blogging though.

  5. Jack Point says:

    Hey good to hear that you have settled down so well, best of luck with college.

    Keep writing of your Indian experiences, good and bad 🙂

  6. Angel says:

    Great to hear about what you’ve been upto and see the panner and chappatti as well! I’m sure you’ll settle into the routine in a few weeks… be sure to keep us updated!

  7. Jack Point says:

    Unrelated topic, but something for teachers of English to mull over:

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