Friday, March 2, 2012

Trivandrum Highlights

First stop is Trivandrum, which is the capital of Kerala.

Arriving in Trivandrum, I see a bunch of red flags all over the place. I realize that these are not just any flags-they are communist flags. This is surprising to me, but I learn about the politics of Kerala and realize the influence of the communist party is quite strong.

My host picks me up on his motor bike and we have great conversation while heading back to his home located in a local village area. My host is just great- he is full of passion, enthusiasm, curiosity, a giving heart, and a zest for life. He is a great person and happy to have been hosted by yet ANOTHER great host. We sit and talk and talk while sitting on the floor sipping on green tea. He lives very simply with a couple matresses and a pretty much empty house with no furniture. He sleeps during the day because he works the graveyard late shift so I am off to explore the city.
Indian coffee house- I love the coffee and the uniforms.

The Christ Church of Trivandrum

The Veg Meal
Served like a queen at an amazing hotel. The staff all stand around with different dishes and give me huge portions of veg combinations.  Oh the amazing staff in India!

Sri Krishna Temple

The Global Ayurvedic festival with free massages

Meeting Vinil
A big Cream colored SUV stops and asks me if I need a ride to town.  I am thankful to get into Air conditioning as it is extremely hott out-so hott I may just pass out walking.  Vinil works at a local dealership and he gave me a ride to the local town.  He loves Tom Cruise and American movies and wishes to one day go to the US.  Since he lives near my host's house, he says he can drive me back near our home at the end of the day and invites me to his home for dinner.  He gives back his company car and we motor bike back to his home.  On the way, he  is singing Bryan Adams, "When you love a woman", he loves the American love songs and he has quite a soothing, nice voice-i ask to hear more.  He jokes that the two things that matter to him are "Jesus" and "safety." We both love Jesus unconditionally- a blessing to meet another Christian and this is common in Kerala because Kerala loves Jesus.

Out of nowhere, Vinil asks if it is okay that he is going to his home because he is poor.  I thought he was joking around because he likes to do that, but it turns out that he is joking.
He lives in the village area in a hut without running water, but he does have electricity and a TV. This is common for the villages in the South to always have a T.V.  He introduces me to his mother and grandmother who are so sweet and serve me amazing fish curry with other veg sides.  Vinil does not eat rather he just watches me eat and makes sure to serve me seconds and fill my water. 
After dinner, he washes my hands with a couple cups of water.  He says, "See I told you we are poor." He humbly tells me that he takes care of his family by paying all the bills and he hopes to one day make enough money to travel to US, but he does not think he will ever have enough.  He is so sweet and here is one of those families I wish I could give to because they would be so appreciative and they deserve the help.  He drops me off at my hosts house, which is empty space, but is a pretty nice home with a few rooms and huge rooftop. 
As Vinil enters his home, he looks around with his eyes wide open.  I can tell he admires the home and I feel what he is feeling.  I look at him and smile and thank him for such a nice dinner at his lovely home.  I wish my friend Vinil the best life and even though life is tough for him- him and his family are happy and at the end of the day that has more value than a big home.  My heart, thoughts, and prayers with your lovely family Vinil and may you one day get to visit New York=)

No comments:

Post a Comment