"Seek thou thy guidance from the wisdom of India."
- Arabic Proverb quoted from Khalid Kishtainy
Women are readily seen outside of the home and the skin shown while wearing a sari is striking after spending the past few months in conservative Islamic society - sometimes seeing nothing more of a girl than her eyes. Now, men are easily spotted wearing shorts and going shirtless though I suspect this does not mean these are habits I should take up. At least, I can leave my shirt open by an extra button or two and not worry about indecency.
Now that I am solidly into the second half of the Watson year I am re-tooling my schedule to account for lessons learned and altogether walking more confidently into unfamiliar locales. My plans for travelling around southern India (Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka) are coming together while I also finalize my train tickets and passage from Nepal to Moscow and eventually home.
Figuring out which food to eat has consistently been the earliest challenge to overcome in each country I have visited and India, perhaps, is the most difficult because of the seemingly endless variety to choose from. So far my strategy of going down the menu and picking two new dishes at each meal has been pretty successful (I try to take pictures and write notes so I will remember what is good)
Below you will see one approach to the ever-reliable North Meal:
In my first week I have already seen colonies of Apis cerana (had some honey from these), Apis dorsata, Apis florea and a box of Trigona (stingless bees), but more on that later. This is just to say that I am here, I am safe, and I think my time on the sub-continent is going to be very fruitful.
Also, as terrible as it is, I have a bunch of drafted posts from Egypt and TZ that I going to post very soon - at the very least with pictures of some of the things I have done and seen during my blogging hiatus.