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Dangerous Monkeys, Shopping, Delhi Belly, the Privileged Bubble

Ayah & Dhobi

We came home yesterday and Sujata had the place clean up, beds made, cupboards all washed out and more. After a busy, jet lagged day, it was so nice to come home to a clean place.

And today is Thursday, which means our laundry is placed outside and Vineet will take care of the rest! We just needs some hangers and a steam iron and we're good to go.


When Sujata came to work, a huge monkey was sleeping outside on our staircase (we live on the top floor). It took over an hour for her to get by the sleeping simian.

The kids are freaked out now by the monkeys because we've heard some horror stories of how vicious they are and how they carry rabies.

I might buy a Monkey Whacking Stick (TM) and keep it in the staircase in case we need to chase them away.   It's not like it is Planet of the Apes - yet!?!?!

Medical Care

We had a presentation from the school's medical department yesterday. Wow, is all I can say!

They have a full time doctor on the premises and we can go to her anytime we need to. They'll take care of pretty much everything so we are well taken in that regard (and any regards when it comes to AES).

They gave us a rundown on how to stay healthy (drink lots, mosquito repellent, and if you can't boil it, cook it, peal it, or wash it then don't eat it). All vegetables and fruits must be washed in a bleach solution (or something similar) as human feces are often used as fertilizer. Yum!

After supper last night, I had a touch of the Delhi Belly - just a minor gastrointestinal adjustment to Asia. Kirsi woke up at 2:00 in the morning with the same thing but is fine now.

Shopping and Jamie Oliver's

The school took all of us newbie's on a shopping trip to Ambience Mall in Vasant Kunj neighborhood. We finished off our shopping with a large group supper at Jamie's (as in Jamie Oliver) Italian restaurant. It was a great way to
relax and get to know the other new teachers.

But, the trip reminded me how much of a privileged bubble that we live in. We go from the very modern, beautiful AES campus and travel to a mall where you buy whatever it is that Louis Vuitton makes, Tommy Hilfiger clothes, Apple products, electronics, furniture, groceries, and then go to Starbucks for coffee.

But you see the real world on the van in-between locations.

Children sell flowers at red lights. Autos (tuk-tuks) and trucks and cars jostle for positions making a 3 lane road 5 lanes - the only rules are you have to honk a lot and 'he who has the bigger balls, goes first.' Drivers will stick their hands out the windows to signal people in the next lane that they're cutting in front. It all seems chaotic and rude for polite Canadian drivers but it works. There were signs, though, saying that this was a 'high collision' zone so drive safely.

The curbs are painted in alternate black and white rectangles. Speed bumps are called speed breakers. The foliage is beautiful and the humidity moisturizes your skin.

Kirsi and Aidan got a brief glimpse in to the real world. Kirsi asked "why do they honk so much?" The thing is, there weren't that many honks compared to other parts of the city or other parts of Asia where the horn is one of the most important parts of a vehicle.

We're looking forward learning more of the real world here. It'll happen soon enough but we need to make sure we're set as a family and that we're ready to for the start of school, which is not that far away now.
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