Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Waiter, There's a Virgin Mary In My Pizza

How many Indian’s does it take to move a car?

Well, I don’t know the answer to that except to say it is a lot. I was in the office when driver came to get me at about 7pm. I packed up my things and went downstairs only to find that our car had been blocked in my another one, and a dusty Hyundai at that. Normally in India, when a car is in the way, it is simply moved out of the way. No need to find the owner, this is done by merely rolling it forwards or backwards, clearing space. Yesterday at Def Col Market (here in my hood) I saw 4 guys pick up a small car and just move it over by about 1 meter to make room for another car – Nobody so much as glanced. In the US, there would have been a storm of Glocks and AK47s to scare off any would be parking Samaritans. So, when I saw we were blocked in, I didn’t think anything of it and driver went to push it out of the way. It didn’t budge. He looked at it, looked in the window, checked to se if the doors were unlocked and then pushed again as if those things would have actually made any difference. The thing I love about people here, is there willingness to help. This usually starts by standing around and taking in the situation and then repeating what others before them have tried only to realize that nothing has changed. But I find the enthusiasm with which people throw themselves into these types of desperate situations heart warming and inspiring.

But I am not yet done with my driver stories yet… I think driver is trying to bond with me. Normally in the car, he plays Indian music and tends to favor the Punjabi sounds, with Punjabi MC being his band or DJ of preference. Not really sure which category Mr. MC falls under. This morning I got into the car and instead of hearing the usual sub-continental beats, I was confronted by Shakira and her truthful hips. I thought it was the radio until I engaged driver in monosyllabic conversation and learned that he had made a tape. It wasn’t long before we were both humming along to Barbie Girl while on the road to Gurgaon. You can brush my hair, undress me anywhere… Did I just think that out loud?

Last Saturday evening I was at the India International Centre for an amazing performance of Rajasthani and Flamenco dancing organized via the Spanish Embassy. I had been living in a social Sahara so long I forgot what it was like to mingle with people in a non-work related environment. The performance was amazing and then we went out for dinner at a fantastic restaurant in Lodhi Colony named Ploof. I highly recommend it. I immediately thought of Nik… It had tones of Lola with an Indian twist and the only thing that would have made the evening any better would have been some bubbles, but I am saving those for this evening, when I treat myself to some upscale drinks at the Ivy. It is indeed time for me to color my life with a bit of glamour.

Mother Nature seems to have gotten the memo that spring is here and she is turning up the heat. And practically overnight, people have gone from complaining about the cold to complaining about the heat. I for one am loving it and can only say “bring it on and keep it coming”. I am also looking forward to evening cocktail parties in the garden and hopefully soon I will have my own place complete with rooftop terrace which will be perfect for sunset bubbles and tasty treats.

Speaking of tasty treats, I was distressed to read about the latest Virgin Mary sighting. I am still waiting for my IRES (In Refrigerator Elvis Sighting) so imagine how distressed I was to see on CNN (yes, it was headline news) that the Virgin Mary has appeared in a pizza pan in Texas. That blows my mind. Why would she go to Texas of all places? I know Beyonce hails from the land of the ten gallon hats and George Dubbya, but really, the Virgin Mary? Perhaps there was no room in any other pizza parlors. You would think she would have learned her lesson and called ahead after that whole stable incident.

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