Wednesday, November 26, 2008

This is the Fish Market

We went to another market on Sunday. This one was a meat market. The open markets have been fun to see.

This one was pretty busy. As you walk by the booths, the vendors holler out to you in your language, trying to get you to buy their wares...obviously they knew I spoke I was Madam. Mathew's mom was Auntie...and his dad and him were Sir. The vendors are able to tell which state you are from in India, and speak in your language. (There are 2000 different dialects...30 states)

This market sold fish and seafood and goat and chickens. We bought some fresh/live crabs and had an asian crab curry for supper.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Monday we went visiting and sightseeing.....we were out and about from 8:30am till 3pm. Here are some things we saw:
  • Papa & Amma's cousins (3 families....2 different houses)
  • Some strange small pink fruit (it is so shiny it looks plastic)
  • Crane Birds (small white ones by cows)
  • Hawks
  • A Camieleon (and I got to see it change color....really cool)
  • Real Touch-Me-Not (that small plant whose leaves close up when you touch it....guess who was wandering around the field poking at all the plants??? ha ha)
  • 2 properties out in the country
  • A small waterfall
  • Lots of people in town
  • A hilltop view of Bangalore

Sorry no camera battery died. It's recahrged now, but not in time for our sightseeing adventures.

Monday, November 24, 2008

How do we Bake?

It is Mathew's dad's birthday today. I was going to bake a cake today....but Bee bought a surprise cake last night before he came over. We stayed up till midnight playing a card game (10 high) and then surprised him with a birthday card and cake.
Today he has to work, so I'm not sure if we will do anything else today.

Tonight, Mathew, his mom, and I are going to visit Kerela and the family there. We will drive in a bus all night...but it's supposed to be a pretty nice bus so we can sleep. We've heard it's rainy and cold there....we'll see. It's been cloudy here too, but muggy and warm.

This is their fridge. Covered in winter pictures...ha ha.

And this is the oven they use.....since I'm not doing a cake....I'm hoping next week to make some crescent rolls. :)

Tender Coconut

I guess there is nothing like tender coconut to quench your thirst on a hot day....

The vendor (on the roadside) whacks off the side and top of a green coconut and sticks a straw in it for you.

You drink out the water.

Then the vendor gives it a couple more whacks with a machete to split it in half. You scoop out the inside and slurp it down.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Some things about India

Their milk comes in little bags and doesn't need to be refrigerated (until after you open it).

There are coconut trees.

They have walk and don't walk signs, like us, but check out the little picture.

Their telephone posts are made out of cement.

Their buses have eyes.

There are tons of autorickshaws.

There's lots of traffic...either motercycles, buses, cars, rickshaws, walking, or just catching a ride.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

New Flats

We went to check out the new flats they are building....about 45 minutes from Mathew's family's house now.

We got to walk through a sample apartment....
Here is the kitchen.

And one of two bedrooms....check out the cool drop curtains.

And the future look...

Indian Food

Here are some things we've been eating:

Palapam & Chicken Stew


Putta (I forgot to take a picture of it AFTER it was what you are looking at is on the stove on the's a steamed rice "log")

Steamed Bananas

Purified Water

To Market to Market...

Yesterday we took a trip to one of the open markets....that was pretty neat! I had been hoping we'd do that.

Here's some fruit: Pineapples, Goa, Oranges, Pears, Custard Apples, Grapes, and Regular Apples.

Making and selling flower garlands.

This kid leaned over to be in the picture on purpose.

We saw all sorts of things available....the only thing was, the price went up every time they saw us stop....let me clarify that....every time they saw me stop. For some reason they think I am a rich American. So, when we actually had to buy something, I just kind of walked on by or hung back and let the others do the shopping....ha ha....I'm not sure if that really worked.

I tried 3 new things from the market.
  1. Boiled Peaunts. I thought they were roasted at first, but no...they were boiled. So, they weren't salted and they were soft. Interesting.
  2. Goa. This is a round green or yellow fruit. Not my favorite. You eat the outside skin with the pulpy's a very strong taste that dries my mouth out.
  3. Custard Apple. This is another type of fruit that looks like an artichoke. I liked this one. You scoop out the inside with a's chew it and then spit out watermelon-like black seeds.

There are LOTS of varities of bananas...not just one or two. Little. Big. Sweet. Green. Etc.

These are spices and nuts. See the big thing of almonds?

Tenga....or coconuts..used in almost everything!

Need some birdies?

This is 2 kinds of tumeric root....which you grind to make tumeric powder.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Back to India

After getting back to Bemidji on Sunday morning....we found that M.'s travel permit had come on Saturday. After many phone calls we decided to go ahead and try to take our trip again...since we had the time off etc.
From the train window.

So, 42 hours later, we are here in India!

Dad drove us at 12:20 (midnight) back to Mps for a train ride to Chicago.

Lots of leg room on the train.

7am we took the train to Chicago.

3:50pm we took a flight to London.

The airplanes gave us these cool packets....headphones, eye patch, socks, toothbrush, toothpaste, and blanket. :)

8 hours later we were in London and took a flight to Bangalore.

We arrived here at 5am.....all luggages in tow. M's family met us at the airport. Took us about an hour to drive to their house.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Taking the Train

Well....we were in Chicago till Saturday noon....and nothing was working out to continue our trip so we decided to abort and head back home.
We took the Amtrack....that was a first...and it was fun.
Here we are at our dining table for supper.
And they had these cool sliding doors to go from car to car.
We got home 10am Sunday morning. When we got there....we saw we had recieved the important paperwork in the mail that allows M. to travel easy!
After church and taking a nap...we called our tickets and tried to sort out our plans. Looks like it still works best to travel guess what! We're back on the trip.
We leave at 12:30pm to catch the train back to Chicago and then try and fly out once more. I'm not sure what God is doing....but it certainly is very humbling!
Hopefully the next time I post we'll be in India.
God bless!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Still in Chicago...

We're still hanging out in Chicago.

What craziness!

We were supposed to get M.'s VISA yesterday at 4pm.....but we waited and waited for a call....finally we called the services....and they said, "Oh, sorry. The consulate closed unexpectedly for all day'll have to wait till tomorrow."

Right now it feels like we're playing a game of dominoes! One thing leads to another....every time we have a delay....we have to change our ticket information...and then appointment stuff....and then VISA stuff....round and round and round!

While we were waiting yesterday, we decided to check out Chinatown. That was pretty fun! We took the metro transit line (subway) and then ate lunch at Tasty China. We checked out the little shops and found a neat tea shop, that sold tea in these big canisters by the pound. We bought some whole leaf green tea for Grandpa, and then found a little post office to mail it to him.

Once you get off the main tourist street.... the shops look like old-fashioned drug stores - big glass containers of candy and groceries.....stacks and barrells of odds and ends....shelves full of colorful tea pots and material. I was only able to get two pictures...and then my camera died. Ha!

We also decided to watch the movie The Terminal yesterday. (It's about a guy who gets stuck in an airport for a long long time and his adventures) We thought it was appropriate! hee hee

Teja cooked dahl and rice and fish last night for supper. That was delicious...since we've been eating Chinese food for the past 3 days :) The night before we played Cartegena....but last night we just sat around eating chocolate and telling stories and laughing.

Tonight we might make chicken curry. M and I need to find a grochery store first, though, and get some chicken and dish soap (they don't go together...don't worry). We'll see what happenes with our travel status later this afternoon.....still waiting for a call.

Thanks for your prayers!


Thursday, November 13, 2008


Well....we are in Chicago.

Things were going smoothly....we got through the check in in Mpls in 15 minutes.....the flight was early to Chicago....we arrived safely and checked in there.....

Then 15 minutes before we boarded the plane, we check in our tickets at the counter, and they said we couldn't go. It turns out, M. needed a transit VISA for our 2 hour layover in London....and we didn't know this. So, they cancelled our flight and told us we couldn't go until we had one!

Thankfully, M. has a friend here in Chicago that came to rescue us. Also a providence, was that the British counsulate is here in town, so it made it handy for us to find out our paperwork and try and get things done. The only un-handy part was, we were out of the flight at 9:45 pm, and Tuesday was a everything we needed was closed!

(This is their cool curtain...they also have turtles)

Wednesday morning we scrambled to make a couple appointments to get things done by the deadline of 10am. Traffic here is it takes hours to cross town. We had to get fingerprints wasn't available till Friday....we knew that was too we made the appointment and then just stopped in on Wednesday morning to tell them our situation. Again, God provided, and they said no problem....we'll get you in this morning. (It only takes about 5 minutes anyway) After that, we sped back to the counselate to hand in the paperwork....but it turns out that if we hand it in ourselves, it takes 5-10 DAYS! The other option was to have an expedia service do it, but we had opted out of that.

It was now 9:45am. We sped over to the expedia service (we had already had conversations with them the day before trying to figure this all out) and she quick put everything together for us....but then told us we couldn't turn it because is was 10:05am. We had to wait until 10am Wednesday...since we had missed the deadline for that day. *sigh*

So, we called the ticket agency (for the 4th time) and again, re-scheduled our tickets (again, thank God, it looks like they won't charge us for that mistake....just re-book us).

Now we wait.

While we've been waiting, we have had a lot of fun. We took the transit/train and explored downtown Chicago. Went out to eat with our friends, toured their lab, saw Lake Michigan, and today hope to check out Chinatown.

(Hey Fawn...look what we tried for the first time!)

(This is a strange hand stick your hands in and pull them out while air blows on them....anyway, I thought it was cool)

So all in all...God is watching over us, and we are grateful.....we are learning faith and trust and patience....and enjoying our time here as an unplanned vacation with friends!


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