March 31, 2011

Sister Sherpa

Marlene, Chetana and I are being so spoiled during our India visit. Doors are opened for us, bags carried, meals cooked, clothes folded and pressed - even towels and baby clothes, and we are driven everywhere by our driver.

This morning I took a totally frivolous bike rickshaw ride and the price was negotiated by three men - Marlene's father-in-law, the cook and our car driver. The rickshaw driver was clearly nervous and cautious about driving around the white lady in the blue hat. To make sure he was on the strait and narrow, our cook's son followed us on his bike for the first few blocks. The ride was actually quite unsettling as you are barely perched on a seat, there is nothing to hold, there are tons of potholes and you are competing with every mode of transport as well as beggars holding on to the rickshaw. I had my fill of the adventure after about 30 minutes.

We are very lucky to have all of these privileges and so many people looking out for us, our every need and indulgence. Marlene and I are always gracious and are careful not to act like Divas. I've now become Sister Sherpa and official Gate Opener - carrying all baby gear and opening the various gates for our driver. It is a lot of fun and everyone is amused by us.

How in the world am I going to return to Oakland to cook for myself, clean my own things and carry my own bags? Leaving here late on Saturday so I have a few more days to feel spoiled.

This is a photo of the staircase in Mandeep's parents' house looking down onto the front door through which all these lovely people enter and exit to make our lives so easy. I hope that someone serves them too but I am not so naïve to really think that is the case.