December 2, 2012 – The day was easy going with early morning chai and late breakfast (fried chappatis, cooked vegetables and lassi) – by now we think that Indians always have a late breakfast, at least the ones we met never ate before 10am. In the late morning we went to visit the farm, which was packed with children and students from nearby cities. The farm is more a picnic area and fun park than a farm, while we still could see how food such as curd, butter and chapattis are prepared and how they spin cotton. It was nice to watch the children enjoy themselves with simple games and activities such as dart, badminton, sack race, camel riding etc. I wonder if Western teenagers would have had as much fun. Another attraction were two whities who got photographed all the time. We had to smile for the pictures so often that our faces almost froze after a few hours.
This is anyway unbelievable, sometimes we feel like movie stars at the Oscar’s. As soon as we stop somewhere in a village to get water or food there are hundreds of people around us. And I am not exaggerating. They want to take pictures of us and of course also want to pose together with us, it is getting really embarrassing. One time we were picked up by someone in a city and she got asked if she also heard about us and if she was specifically coming to see us! Indians are just extremely curious. On the other hand this makes it very easy for us to cycle on even busy roads, since everybody would slow down, truck drivers even hang out of their windows to be able to see us better. As I wrote last time, they would even just drive with us for a while or in between us (which I detest, since I am usually behind Johan and have to breathe in all the exhaust).
Coming back home after the farm visit we decided to go for a walk, we’ve been eating a lot and wanted to move a bit. We didn’t get far. About 300 meters from the farmhouse was the village in which ‘our’ families servant lives. He invited us – for a glass of sweetened hot milk, something I really hate. As a child I always had to drink a glass of hot milk with honey when I was sick with the flu. Even then I could hardly swallow it and pretended to have to go to the loo to spit it out again. Something I of course can’t do here and refusing anyway doesn’t help, you have to accept something and if you don’t take milk you will have to take water which might cause serious problems later on. After about 20 minutes we decided to leave again – and the servant came with us to guide us to the next neighbor, another farmer we met the day before. This time we just said hello and successfully refused tea or milk.
On Sunday we got ready to leave – but not without getting the address of Sunita’s father who happens to live in our next destination, Bhiwani, and a friend of their’s who happens to live in the village we were supposed to go to the following day! We again had free full-board accommodation secured and started feeling bad since all we could give in return was a picture of us with a thank you on it! But all these families will have a place in our hearts for the rest of our lives for making our stay in India so memorable and enjoyable.