Thursday, October 29, 2009

Another Day, Another Rat

Another day, another rat...

We think a newspaper on the doorstep is overrated.

Let’s experiment. I am going to write a stream of consciousness right now for a whole paragraph, not screening anything. Let’s see what comes out... Ready, Steady, Go - Oh man, nothing’s coming, geez. This was a lame experiment, today I almost hit a goat, I hear if you hit an animal with your car around here you get shot. That would be a bummer. My cuticles need to be pushed up, I shouldn’t have had french fries at dinner. Nothing’s coming, what’s next... Why is that the only thing I can think of right now is Hot Tamales. I love Hot Tamales. They make my heart soar. BBC movies also make my heart soar right now. I am watching one called Cranford. It’s great. It’s about these little ole’ ladies in the mid 1800’s... Okay enough. That wasn’t as fun was I thought it would be. Oh well, you never know what it’ll to be like if you don’t try - that’s what I told James last night as he stared at his chicken for nearly 20 minutes at dinner.

So, Ani and I went Explooting last weekend. It’s been a while. I took her to the tea factory in town. Tea is a huge commodity here. I am sure many a tea that you drink comes from south India. Tea fields grace the hills around here and I never tire of looking at them. So, we have a tea factory in town and I have seen the smoke come out of its stack since we have been here, but I haven’t visited it. I was quite impressed by the operation of it all. I took a few shots and will lead you through the process, consider it your own personal virtual tour... Enjoy.

Fresh tea leaves.

The lady is stuffing the leaves down a big "laundry chute" of sorts.

Down it goes, onto a conveyor belt.

Up and down, up and down it goes, through a... whatever that is.

Onto a really big cookie sheet.

Lots of really big cookie sheets.

Down another conveyor belt, through the, whatever those are.

And there you have it. Tea.

Lots of tea.

Foreground, Ani. Background, rows of tea fields.

Let’s chat about Freedom Firm. It’s been a while. Bittersweet. That’s the word that comes to my mind. First, the sweet. Yesterday we rescued six majors (all over 18) from a brothel in Pune. Great news, right? I mean, they wanted to be rescued, and we were able to get them out - that is truly great news. Now the bitter. After the raid, the operative in charge saw a bunch of minor girls, all huddled together, just outside the red-light area. The police appear to be working with the brothel keepers, making raids involving minor girls difficult lately. So to find those minors outside the red-light area at the same time of a raid tells us that, likely, the police tipped-off the brothel keepers, who then emptied their brothels of minor girls.

Thanks Jayson-Bo-Bason. Ani came home yesterday telling of the great news that she has a boyfriend. He will remain anonymous per Ani’s request. I asked her why he was her boyfriend and she said, “Well so and so told the class that boyfriends give girlfriends flowers and then (the said boyfriend) told me to meet him at the playground after school so he could give me some flowers. So that’s when I knew he was my boyfriend, he wants to give me flowers Mom... I think I am in love with him...” That story comes from the girl who told me a few months ago that she didn’t want to be married because she didn’t want to have to compromise with someone for the rest of her life. We’ll see if that later theory holds out...

So, hey, we are moving. Across town near the lake. Long story short, we will not be able to stay in this house for much longer, and another already-furnished house opened up and we snatched it. There are not many rental houses in Ooty that would feel like home to me and this does, so I feel entirely grateful. We move in December 1. Funny fact about this house is that it is the same house that we went and had tea at a few months back (remember the short Indian man, Shankar?) and the present renters were away on holiday and I feared they would come home while we relaxing in their dining room... Yeah, that’s the one. Funny. More later on the new house and some of the idiosyncrasies that come with the house.


Jennifer said...

Luke wants to know if the rat is dead and where's Pirate. Erika wonders whether Ani even likes flowers that much. Mark is fighting Kenra. Good to hear from you as always! Jennifer

Jennifer said...

P.S. I wonder who has had dinner at your house while you were out, heheh...or more importantly, what they ATE while there. :)

Julie Frizzell said...

Heard of "Tulsi Tea"? My friend told me I had to go & get some at Whole Foods b/c it is so good for you...So, I went & got myself some Tulsi & it is only found in India. What a great Explootying idea! If it makes you feel any better, one of Mary's friends is begging her mom for a rat. ewww is all I can say to that.

I loved your random stream of consciousness...

mel said...

hey! congrats on the new place...yea!! perfect timing on the move, you'll have helpers ;)
i seriously can't believe the size of your rats out there! they are like your replacement for squirrels. just about the same size, eh?

mel said...

by the way, totally appreciated the stream of consciousness...i liked it. hot tamales. now there's an idea! last time i had those was with you and jayson last dec. oh anyways, back to writing my paper thats due in just a few hours. :)

Mom Palm said...

Hey...Jules here, but mom too...I just got her all set up so that she can "comment" as well, since she's on the computer all of the time! (ha! ha!) Maybe you'll hear from her here sometime...
chow... thinks the rat is kind of cute. chubbier than those here. =) she thinks a nice name for him would be "chubby" ...there ya go. Go and get attached so you can see pirate eat chubby! (just kidding!)

Anonymous said...

I think you should cross-breed that rat with a white one and then you would have something!
Aunt Sue

Adam :) said...

Highest South India...of a tea manufacturing plant. Love it! Thanks for all the manufacturing pictures! Looks interesting!

As for your ocurred to me today that they're probably the indian equivalent of our midwestern squirrels. I wondere if there might be a culture out there that regards our cute midwestern rodents with the same disdain we have for their indian counterparts.

Jada said...

I liked the tea tour. Very educational. :)

Congrats on the move! I hope it feels more like home.


Ron Oldham said...

Thanks for the Tea house tour. I'm always impressed by these high tech presentations.;-)

Chris said...

Great tea tour. Loved the detailed info. on the whatchamacallits and the thingamajigs. I enjoy your blogs immensely.