I went to bed yesterday sensing a radiating warmth that had accumulated in my soul throughout the day. Before falling into a dreamy sleep, I took some time to reflect on what contributed to my contentment.
started my day with yoga and a bath.
put on a new purple, orange, and green tailored Indian suit.
went to the bike repair man, confirmed I did not have a flat (or “puncture” as they are called here), and got my tires pumped up and ready to roll.
arrived at the program house and gobbled down a satisfying breakfast of eggs and toast, a banana, nutella, peanut butter, and of course chai.
went to Hindi class and filled my brain with new idioms.
ate an extremely satisfying lunch of rice, dal, sabji (vegetables), puri (a fried flatbread), yogurt, salad and grapes.
along with our program directors (Sundar and Nitish) and my friend Cassie, tossed grapes into each others’ mouths.
giggled with Cassie like a middle school girl as we dropped grapes into Nitish’s office through a hole in the ceiling.
had a conversation in Hindi with Sundar and Nitish about Indian superstitions.
learned how to say “goodbye” in a typical Banarasi style: “Mahaadev” (it means “great God” and refers to Shiva).
navigated my way through a series of rather pointless survey distributions for my field methods class; but it was a fun adventure anyways.
cruised home on my bike through relatively empty streets.
washed a heap of clothes by hand.
helped my host grandma (I call her Mata ji) make dinner while she taught me and the other two foreigners in my house how to cook Indian food.
Recently I haven’t taken much time to reflect on the seemingly average events that comprise each of my days. The first few weeks of my time here were packed full of sight-seeing and settling in, so after we did get settled, I began to feel like my days were lacking adventure. Sometimes I feel like I should have more to say at the end of the day; however, it is refreshing to realize that even when it seems I don’t do anything particularly eventful, each day I am guaranteed to have opportunities to practice my Hindi, learn a lot, laugh until my abs hurt, and dodge a cow in the street.