Friday, February 13, 2009

Their First Week In Bangalore...

"Look Before You Leap" is a good frame of reference when traveling in India. Most tourists enter India via the airport and jump right into the thick of it. Really fortunate ones get a "soft" landing in Palm Meadows...where India seems clean and orderly and there is a likelihood that you'll be served tea on the terrace at least on occasion.

Keeping that in mind, we planned a nice transition for Bob's parents, Barbara and Dick Fischer. They arrived near 2 am on January 2nd, to Bangalore's airport. Bob was there to pick them up but alas, they had arrived earlier than he was expecting and had exited the airport terminal. As Bob waited in queue for their "arrival", Grandma and Papa walked the airport footpaths, searching. Conveniently enough, Papa Dick had mis-written Bob's mobile number and Grandma Barb became convinced that they were now stranded in India, with no place but the pavement to rest upon. Alas, our hero, son Bob, made rescue and saved the middle-of-the-night. Spirited away towards La-La Land, they had no idea how lucky they were to have landed at the new, clean and organized airport rather than the chaotic, old, run-down, traffic filled, mosquito buzzed, garbage strewn port of yore...

Arrival complete, we organized a relatively quiet week at Palm Meadows, treating them to Sunday champagne brunch at the Taj West End, forays into the insanity of Bangalore traffic and a day out at Gerry Martin's farm (where the homeschool group meets with naturalist and herpetologist, Gerry, for science and nature projects and a picnic lunch every other week). The week also included a visit to Russell Market...where the scent of temple jasmine mingles with the odor of freshly butchered meat and the bleat of goats is interrupted by voices calling out incentive to fruit and vegetable. Oh, and the smells...of those there are many.

A good day in traffic (honestly, photographs will NEVER convey it...)

Owen and Gerry prepare a bucket that soon becomes a
"House for Wayward Crickets (who don't mind being eaten by baby chicks)"

Grayce, Brandon, Maaike and Aswarthi carry the cricket farm at Gerry's

In preparation for meeting Vimala, Barbara learns how to leave the beds unmade and the dishes untouched!

Barb and Dick in the flower market at Russell Market. The jasmine swags might be hung from a doorway at festival time, offered at temple or used in pooja to a truck or automobile. This is nice place to refresh ones sense of smell after a late day perusal of the meat or fish stalls...

The Beef Market is a separate building across the street from the rest of Russell can also purchase Camel meat here, or a pet guinea pig should you have a hankering.

Oh, and vulture watching is an excellent past time should you find yourself waiting streetside.

Live Turkeys... one of many noble Russell Market Fowl.

Mutton, anyone?

Fresh Limes...just outside the fruit and vegetable entrance.
And now...on to Pondicherry!
The Fischers
Entertainining Grandma Barb and Papa Dick
in Bangalore!

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