so much to say but so tired…

So much to say but so tired. I’ve wanted to write since last Thursday, but everything go so busy! I can’t believe it. Last Thursday I had a great day. I got to spend time at one of my favorite centers with some of my favorite kids. These are the oldest kids (all girls) in this city. Some of them are in college some are still in the 10th standard. College here starts at 11th grade. After you go through the 10th standard (10th grade basically), you have to take a big exam. If you do well you can go to college (to my understanding). This test is a really, really, big deal. These girls also followed their teacher, who moved to a different center. They all have a great head on their shoulders, they speak English very well, and are just great girls in general. There is a debate competition going on between centers for the older students. We had a mock debate at the center on Thursday. They debated (their debate is a little toned down from a typical US debate) on arranged marriage verses love marriage. I was so proud of both teams because they were so passionate about their side (even though for some of them, it wasn’t what they felt was right). Afterwards in the rickshaw – they drop me to a closer point so I don’t have to take a long and expensive rickshaw ride back – we spoke about their real feelings about arranged and love marriages. They asked me if I get married if it will be a love or arranged marriage. I said that in the US there are not really any arranged marriages (at least to my knowledge). One student, said that she is never getting married. She wants to be a journalist and take care and support her parents. The way they all spoke without getting angry at each other, not trying to persuade each other that the other is wrong, was amazing. There was another girl who was completely sure that she was going to get an arranged marriage and believes that they are better than love marriages. They even made the distinction between marriages these days and marriages from their parents era. It was such a sophisticated conversation. It just made my day.
What also made my day is that I got a phone call, finally, from the gym. They want me to do a demo lesson. I went in that evening to get more information, and then went back again with a home made mini flyer about capoeira. I got confirmation tonight that the class will be on Wednesday at 7:30. I’m to get there at 7:00, change there, and be on the floor at 7:15 to talk to people. They’re putting up the flyers today. I feel not ready for something like this, especially after this weekend.
This weekend was the capoeira batizado in Bombay. It was a great event. I had a great time. It was nice hanging out with my friends again, but a different experience than usual. I stayed with one group of friends the two previous times I was there. This time I stayed with Nupur and his family. His parents are amazing, lovely, wonderful people. His dad and I share the same birthday and we both love elephants and Bombay. Nupur took me sight seeing during our non capoeira time as well. I finally saw the Gateway of India – a huge arch by the sea that was erected to celebrate the arrival of the Queen of England (I can’t remember more than that). Right next to that is the Taj Hotel, where Obama stayed and where the terror attacks happened a few years ago. It was nice to see some of Bombay that I hadn’t seen yet. It was sad not to see some of my friends as much though. The night I got there, after being at work all day, spending time with children, spending time in the office, getting on the train, sitting on the floor of the train for 4 hours, and getting through Bombay to meet my friends, I had to go to a sangeet (pre wedding cereony). I felt out of place in my work clothes but with all good people, there is a good time. I got mendhi as well, which is faithfully temporarily tattooed onto my right hand. We stayed out and about, talking and goofing around until very late. It felt very good to speak Portuguese, to be around a culture I understand completely. There were 2 mestres from Brazil, Mestre Esquilo and Mestre Chicote, both of whom know some of my friends from capoeira from New York including my mestre, Caxias. The event was like most capoeira events; something else very comforting and familiar.

I want to write more, but seeing as my train got me in at midnight and I didn’t reach my place until almost 1, got up at 6:30, and was working for almost 11 hours, I think the best idea would be to get to sleep, seeing as it’s almost midnight again and tomorrow my day is just as long. I love it!

Upcoming items that will be mentioned are: it’s cold here, making friends on the train, discussions at lunch, (if not until Wednesday evening, how my capoeira class went), everyone being so nice, Bombay v. Pune, and some photos…

    • Naveen
    • December 15th, 2010

    How did your Demo class at the Gym go ? Also a snap of your Mehndi would be great!

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