On Friday night I attended a naming ceremony for an Hotel School alumni’s son. He generously invited me, despite us never meeting but said that being a friend of Mr. Adie’s is better than having met previously. I purchased a Thomas the Train Engine toy which sings and blows bubbles as you push it. I thoroughly enjoyed Thomas when I was a child so hopefully Siddartha enjoys the character as well. I took the 335-E from Whitefield and allotted two hours as the drive is about 30 KM but traffic is horrendous. Unfortunately, Friday night traffic was worse than usual and the bus took three hours to get within 3 KM of the Bangalore Club and from there I hired an auto-rickshaw for the remaining distance.
The ceremony was beautifully decorated and had banquet seating inside as well as ample seating outside on the lawn. There was an open bar and a delicious buffet with desserts that included cupcakes with sugar ‘s’ on them. Uttam and I talked for a while before he had to continue greeting guests. He introduced me to his friend who studied at Cornell for 6 years and graduated from the Vet School. I talked to him for a while before he had to leave with his children and wife. However, the timing was perfect because as Ashok left, a brother and sister my age entered the outdoor lawn and I went over to introduce myself. They are both in college; Varoon is getting his pilot’s license transferred from Canada to India and his sister is studying Mechanical Engineering at a college in Bangalore. I enjoyed dinner and chatted with them until the end of the evening when they generously offered to drive me home since they live in Whitefield as well. The evening was extremely enjoyable and I felt honored to attend a true Indian ceremony.
On Saturday, Daniela and I took the 335-E to downtown Bangalore where we went shopping on Commercial Street as we had the previous weekend. I purchased a few more scarves to finish my gift shopping while in India. I ate at Woody’s which is a delicious three-story vegetarian restaurant. Fortunately, Daniela and I had perfect timing as we entered the tiny A/C section and at the same moment a table of four was paying their check. The line for waiting for a table was unorganized so we seized the opportunity and sat down. I ate delicious Cheese Masala Dosa and a chocolate-vanilla sundae for dessert.
I awoke at 6:30 AM on Sunday to get ready to visit a village. Jagedish who works for Avesthagen generously invited us to his village which is about 1.5 hours east of Bangalore. Which is further than you may be thinking because there is an actual highway and no traffic so we made great time. We hired a taxi for the day and stopped at Café Coffee Day on the way to the village. Upon arrival, Jag showed us his wife’s Animal Clinic which is used to neuter dogs since there is a huge population control issue facing Bangalore and in 2007 the government said that all stray dogs shall be caught and killed which led to mass killings. Jag’s wife is a Vet in Bangalore and also has a boarding venue for dogs near the airport. She is very sweet and made us a delicious lunch which included spiced rice, white rice, curd, and plenty of fresh mangoes. Jag introduced us to his family and friends in the village. He has a beautiful home there; however, his wife and he spend most of their time at their house in Bangalore since it is convenient for work. I visited the high school which only goes to grade 10 and for grade 11 and 12 children, if not required to work, must go to a nearby town to attend their remaining two years of school. Jag owns a lot of land which includes: several wells 50 feet deep and 20 feet in diameter, mulberry fields, and mango trees. A lot of the villagers have dark rooms in the back to raise silk worms. The temperature must remain cool for them to thrive and the windows are all netted to prevent flies from infecting the worms. The government comes every few months and pays for the silk that is produced. After an enjoyable and educational day at the village I headed home and went swimming in the pool before dinner.
|Reservoir amongst the other wells.|
|Massive Termite Homes, there were 3 others...|