case of the monday’s on a tuesday

I’m back with my computer. It was gone for a week, they had to replace some circuit in the motherboard (it turned off and just wouldn’t turn back on). I feel a little more complete. We had an amazing three day weekend, we meaning me and my friends from Pune and Mumbai. It was full of festivities. Saturday we went to Mumbai to visit the capoeira class. It was great to see my two worlds combine. The Mumbai folks are such good hosts and sports about having random people stay with them. After class we played silly games and ate out. Everyone bonded nicely. At 5am the next morning we began a longer than usual journey to Alibaug. One of our friends has a house there. I’ve been there once before in December. It was a great time as well. The only difference is that it was super humid and the beach was quite disgusting because there was a mini oil spill in Mumbai. We took a little walk on the beach in the afternoon but that’s about it. I definitely was reminded what it was like in India when I first arrived; I have so many mosquito bites all over my body.
There were a few festivals this weekend. Saturday was Raksha Banhan (translated to the bond of protection), a ceremony where a sister ties a certain kind of string bracelet, a rakhi, to her brother. It basically ties the bond between the siblings, Wikipedia says it well, it, “involves the tying of a rakhi (sacred thread) by a sister on her brother’s wrist. This symbolizes the sister’s love and prayers for her brother’s well-being, and the brother’s lifelong vow to protect her.” I tied it on my friend Succuri’s hand. At first he wouldn’t accept it; I’m not Indian, and it’s a big deal. He didn’t even let his own sister tie it. The symbolism is real so it’s a bit of a big deal. I was very happy he let me tie it. If I were to have a little brother, I’d want him to be like him. Anyway, not getting too personal, I’ll move on to the next holiday, Independence Day. Unfortunately I did nothing but come back from Alibaug, go food shopping, and go to my capoeira class that was cancelled. Instead we all went for a snack. The class was cancelled even though the space was open and the watchman was there. But, rules are rules, especially here.
Today I tried to go through some websites for renewing my visa. The last paragraph of one of the websites states, “Once you have submitted the documents you will get a receipt stating that you have submitted, but you won’t get anything else that says your stay in India is valid. Your documents have to be sent off to Delhi to be processed and they will tell you that you will get notification via post when you can come and pick up your extension and make the payment. However virtually no one has ever received their Employment Extension visa, reports from most Expats indicate that you will never receive your Employment Visa Extension – however if you have submitted the paperwork, this is enough, but keep hold of the receipt that says you have done this.” What is this supposed to mean really? I called an immigration lawyer that gave me three options. First he stated that I can’t even file for reapplication until 15 days before my current visa expires. Then he said that if I go they’ll either reject it on the spot, send it to Delhi where it will take a while to get processed and they’ll extend it for 1-3 months, or they’ll flat out reject it in Delhi. This is not promising at all. The upside is that I might be home in September. I don’t think there can be anything sad about coming home for some time except for the fact that I’d be leaving my other home for some time; quite a conundrum.
Anna Hazare, a political activist was put in jail today while he was preparing to go on a hunger strike again. There are protests all over, especially in Delhi. He is the force behind the anti corruption campaign in India. I think he’s amazing.

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