My chest swelled with pride as I saw them in action. Tiredness was no excuse and language was no barrier. They worked and they played. They cooked and they served. They coughed and they sneezed. They sang carols and danced garba. They were amazing.
“They” were :
Mike – a goro chokro out to find a desi chokri. When is the wedding?
Albert – dependability in a dhoti who almost got mowed down by a cow (or is it mooed down?).
Jose – an angel who washed dishes for three hours straight (and saw bison).
Marcella – who was pure composure and politesse in a cafe’s chaotic kitchen.
Lanie – a giver, a lender and a sharer who broke a tourist record (can’t tell or she will kill me).
Supun – a “just like an Indian” who shopped with two wild women in Bombay and nearly lost his life in an autorickshaw (the shopping was scarier).
Laura – who gave talks that kept producing tears for which she never produced Kleenex.
Brittany – who became a “new and improved” sassy Brittany, till her mother rescued her from me.
Stacey – experience in a cafe and a pesto and pasta maker.
Jason – worship and devotion….for Angela of course. With eyes only for her, I wonder if he saw India??
Angela – tolerant of promises not kept and schedules not followed…what followed HER were all the cameras.
Gianna – self-assured and always enthusiastic, receiving “rock star” treatment in a teacher’s home.
Carolina – maturity and alertness and consideration….and a future fellow traveler???
Kristeen – who made my day by finding a fellow Poonjabi in Gujjuland.
Sheetal – kindess and coolness and willingness to try anything and help anyone.
Nirali – who really is “nirali” (unique) and someone who survived our visit with good humor and sanity intact(no mean feat this!).
Sukh – someone who needs a shave….just kidding! No really !!! Shave the beard and I will tell! :)
and me???? I was someone who saw a different India. Amazing how you can see this India on the same visa.