Monday, August 24, 2009

Madurai or bust!

I've been in India for two weeks now. To give you a brief taste of India, here's a list of things I encounter on a day to day basis:

The lovely combination of jasmine and smoke and car exhaust and human, and pink and yellow and blue houses painted in Tamil with commercials for detergent or the "superb" brand of motor oil, and shacks built out of metal slats and concrete and left-over buildings and dirt hovels, and garbage and red earth and chunks of buildings churned together to make mountains, and mountains of small stone faces clumped into the domes of temples, and bright blue mosques, and black braids and moustaches, and red bindis and saris like sunsets, and palm trees and dust and rivers choked with plastic, and goats and cows digging through literally piles of shit with their horns painted and their ribs poking out, and dogs lying on the street divider as men and women move in separate clumps, and brightly colored hospital sheets stretched out to dry on the land where the big river used to flow, and long train rides and squatting over a hole that lets my piss fall to the tracks below, and nose rings like diamond flowers, and the air so hot and heavy that every time I step outside a film of sweat coats my skin, and temples over a thousand years old that we tread through with our bare feet, and cream colored churches and red striped Krishna temples, and Christmas lights strung up in the shapes of Ganesh and Shiva, and banana groves, and children laughing and waving and blowing kisses at the white girl in a salwaar kameez biking through the complete batshit system of Indian traffic.

In conclusion, India is like one really long run-on sentence. It's wearing me out, but so far I wouldn't have it any other way.


  1. It sounds gorgeous.

    I hope you're taking pictures, it sounds like a slideshow that I wouldn't miss for the world!

  2. You live! This is good. Would love more India detail and pics, when you have the chance. Missing you lots, and hope you're having an excellent time!

  3. Well, glad to see all that time Ms. Salvi invested in teaching you to carefully structure your sentences made such an impact on you...

    When I read your writing, I can hear you in my head. When I can hear you, I can see you. Not in a salwaar kameez, not with my never-spent-time-in-India mind, but I can see your face and those crazy blue glasses.

    Everyone I know from India and Pakistan simply shakes their head from side to side and smiles when I tell them you're in Madurai. From your writing, I can get the briefest glimpse of why...