Saturday, January 30, 2010

Culture, culture, culture

Alright well I'd better get everyone up to speed, since I'm pretty excited to post about my experience this morning at the widows programme visit. But first things first. The above picture comes from Sushilla calling Chuck "mukka" which means monkey since he is a big goofball, but then we are all goofy, so I'm a "mukkani" or girl monkey. So we're just making sure we look the part. :)

My week started great actually, a bit of an upswing from a tiring day in Hyderabad on Sunday. We had a two day session on strategic planning with a Mr. Vikas Gora. But Wednesday to Friday we did development communications, and let's just say that we decided the only enjoyable way to attend the class was high on cold medications. This professor was a complete hypocrite, preaching feedback and evaluation, and then ripping people apart in private for presenting the slightest criticism or request to him.

Aside from the mixed week of class, we had another culture night on Tuesday with about 200 Bala Vikasa women coordinators who came from around the province for training. And after my friend Sushilla's wonderful Nepali dance, it was suggested that five Canadian girls learn the dance and perform for these ladies, as they were celebrating Christmas and New Years together. Well I was the first one to volunteer!

So basically we learned the dance in 30 minutes, found some hilariously huge Asian looking pants and popped on some black shirts, and we were ready to go. It was really fun, and the night of performances (dances, singing and skits) stretched on to midnight. Most international participants left part way through but I didn't want to miss all the pretty dances or feel like I was being disrespectful.

Regardless, we (obviously mostly Sushilla) got a great reaction from the crowd, and even Santa, the special guest, came to dance with us also. The whole evening was wonderful, watching all the performances, eating ice cream, exchanging gifts with friends and dancing all crazy on the stage.

To culminate the evening, all of the male staff dressed in sarees (like women) and the female staff like men, and danced around the stage, with some getting out of control or provocative!

And to end the night, the women received some gifts from Bala Vikasa - and the few international girls left received some hilarious nightgowns (think Little House on the Prairie). So I put one on, dressed up some boys in the them, and danced around as well.

So that was Tuesday night. Friday night we went to see Veer with Salman Khan - very famous Hindi actor here. This was my first real bollywood movie and though it was 90 percent Hindi, it was awesome! It had action, romance, singing and dancing, and fighting. Okay the ending where Khan's character is reincarnated is a bit absurd but I was so entertained the entire time, plus it costs a dollar and there's delicious popcorn. A bunch of us ended up going so a great time.

My friend Raju - who is from Nepal - somehow reads this blog and wanted me to post a picture of him and I so here it is:


  1. i love the santa dancing!
    is there a variety of films at the theatres, or is it almost solely comprised of bollywood?

    ps - you're a cute monkey!

  2. Wow, ton site c'est merveilleux !!! et en Inde tu as decouvert autant de trucs,
    je voix :)