More on Traffic

I forgot to mention the elephants. They’re not as common here as in other parts of the country, but they’re in demand for temple rituals. This one was likely part of our neighborhood temple puja and on its way to the next big event. The chains disturbed me, but they don’t seem to be chafing. I guess when it comes to animals that have been used as weapons of war, that really can squash a person, folks are interested in being able to control them.

Read more

This is Tamarind

We went to a new lunch place today and got pretty freaked out. Prakash said we should check out the canteen at NISH (an institute for those with communication struggles), since it’s practically right out our front door. Not that he’d ever eaten there – it’s just the kind of place to have one. Today, we went there and arrived too early (as we do), but then we got fed a lovely meal by super-nice people and paid less than anywhere else nearby. Not only that, they do breakfast! Idly and sambar (we hope) in close proximity! Wow! We’ll be checking that out tomorrow morning. As we were walking back from lunch today we saw a couple of very nice people shaking a tree in quite a few different places. They’d shake and a bunch of brown pods would fall. We approached and asked what it was and the man reached into a bucket that he was rapidly filling with these things, pulled out a couple and handed them to us. He made the universal, “Go Ahead and Eat It, It’s Great!” gesture (Hand to mouth, big grin) so we did… Wow, Fucking wow!!! It was incredible! It was almost like my (James) body just absorbed the stuff, like I needed it, badly! And, it turns out it (my body) did. Tamarind is a very large, long lived shrub although to me it looks like a big tree. The evergreen leaves are elliptical ovular and pinnately veined; in other words, it’s cool looking. At night the leaflets close up like little books in a great green library. Now for the good part, it’s sweetly sour right off the tree and perfectly edible but best of all it is outrageously good for you, it has… 37% of your daily Thiamine, 13%[…]

Read more