It seems like I’m feeling better today! Amy L, I’m following your advice and drinking tons of water, and it seems to help. I notice that I start feeling gross in the car ride after the orphanage (granted, a 1 hour ride through Delhi traffic may make anyone sick), and so today I brought a full water bottle and drank it on the way home. No icky feeling! Lunch was Chinese food, which was incredibly exciting and I ate way too many noodles and too much fried rice. They also had some kind of Chinese-flavored paneer (Mary, you would have loved it!) When I was washing my dish in the kitchen I realized that the staff was all eating noodles covered in red spicy sauce – I think they thought we were too wimpy and had to eat mild noodles. They offered me some but I was too full. From now on I will definitely be checking out the staff food, I am a glutton for spice!
At the orphanage today we tried to ask some of the caregivers what the kids’ names and genders were, but we got very little out of them. I pointed to the little girl on my lap and they said “Pinki”, but then I pointed to a little girl sitting next to me and they also said Pinki. Then they said something in Hindi. Maybe there are 2 of them or maybe that’s what they call toddler girls?? I’ll have to investigate. “My” Pinki had some odd behavior today! She’d hit my face and then rub my cheek to try to soothe me, and then when I looked at her in bewilderment she’d snuggle and cling to me, and fight the others off who would try to sit in my lap too. I think some of it is mimicry of the caregivers’ behavior, and maybe she doesn’t understand but is just acting it out. Definitely interesting stuff for someone interested in child psych.
There was some incredibly adorable behavior too – she would come up to one side of me, kiss my cheek, run around to the other side, grin, kiss the other cheek, back and forth. So sweet! And she and another girl were pretending my blue scarf was water.. they would touch it, then pretend to wash their hands, face, hair. Also, she would take my scarf, hold it up to my face, plant a million kisses on it, then take it off and say her version of “peekaboo!” It’s nice that these kids who don’t get much love at least have some concept of it.
Today a little girl was being adopted! It was quite exciting. She was about 4 years old, and I’d never seen her before – maybe she goes to school when I’m there usually. They dressed her up in this big poofy pink princess dress and put a bindi on her and made her hair look beautiful. It was so sweet and the nuns seemed really happy. Her adoptive family was from Italy and it looked like they already had an older Indian son. I’d seen some adoptions going on in Guatemala at the hotels, but never the moment when the child leaves the orphanage with their new family, so this was really wonderful.
This afternoon, Sam, Annica and I went to the craziest mall. Not only did it not feel like we were in India anymore, this was a bit fancy for the US! It was called CityWalk, and you had to go through metal detectors to get in. They had Chanel, L’Occitane, Prada, all of the really expensive stuff. We didn’t shop but did enjoy wandering around something so dramatically different than what we’ve gotten used to. We did go to the food court which was fun. They had all these different stations – dosas, chaat, grilled foods, sandwiches, pizza, pasta. I had some kind of chaat that was surprisingly not that good. Baluchi’s aloo papri is better! (gasp!) It was fun though because we sat outside and ate our food and it was so lovely and peaceful. They had these tents you could eat your food court food in, with pillows and lanterns, etc. We also stopped by KFC and Pizza Hut to check out their veg menus, which was crazy and fun.
That was it for today, now I must go to bed early because we have to leave at 5 tomorrow morning for the Taj Mahal! I’m so excited.
PS: Mary, I can’t remember, what is the pose I must do there?