Thoughts from India #2: Tidbits

Namaste, Sat Sri Akaal, Asalam Walekum, Jai Jinendra, and hello from India!

The ladies in Rajasthan are known to wear saris, huge fancy nose rings, and it’s common in Rajasthani culture for the ladies to have their eyes-to-nose portion of their face covered by their sari draped over their head. I was curious to know why the ladies do this. It looks quite mysterious, especially because it’s a very thin piece of cloth covering their eyes, so you can still see their gold nose pieces glistening away.

I can’t exactly define it, but the hindi word that was described to me is sharam. Now that translates to “shame” in English, but it’s used in a different context here. It’s more of the ladies being shy towards men that aren’t their husbands, so covering their eyes makes them look a bit timid. Not every Rajasthani lady does this, but the majority do. Just something I thought y’all should know.

I’ve been here just over a month now and one thing I’ve noticed that really bothers me is the lack of social etiquette here. Now I’m not saying I’m perfect, but it’s the basic social cues that people just aren’t getting when in any form of public space.

  • Cranking Back Your Seat in an Airplane – I mean, just because there’s a lever to do so, doesn’t mean you should. I was resting my head against the pull-out table when the kind lady in front decided to sunbathe.
  • Watching Your Reckless Children – Now I can’t make this statement for all parents, but I’ve seen a lot who just let their children run wild and free on the streets, inside temples, restaurants…everywhere! My recent experience was on the overnight train to Bihar. It was all peace and quiet until three young boys started swinging from the bunk beds screaming! And the mum was sitting beside me laughing. Hello parent control?
  • Yawning Without a Care – How often do we yawn really loud in public and let everyone see the inside of our mouth, right to our tonsils? Yeah, you just don’t do it. Rude.
  • Burping – This is so annoying and it happens the most. Men are always burping really loud, and they’re almost always in really close proximity to others. If I wanted a heavy wift of your breath up in my nasal area, I would ask.
  • Urinating Everywhere – Oh man. Streets, parks, railways, roadsides…literally anywhere that has a spot to stand. I’ve had numerous scenery shots ruined because some man has decided to plant himself on that centre rock.

Sigh. Simple stresses I know.

Driving through Delhi and we pass a huge sign that says HANG THEM IN PUBLIC. Every family is talking about the gang rapes that have been happening in Delhi and the females who have suffered and died. India’s public are furious with what has happened and are demanding justice.

Sending love from Delhi, Bihar, and Jaipur!