Monday, March 31, 2008

Dr. Di Michelle Reams Rockstar

Got a haircut. Check me out. I am either an 80's rockstar or a Michelle Reams wanna be. You decide.

Holi and the education of our men

The festival of colors. We were excited. People throw powdered colors on each other and make merry. Sounds like fun. We armed ourselves with water balloons (thank you mike and lark) and walked around getting covered in colors and covering others in water. We found a neighborhood of yelling and screaming children and played with them. It was so fun. They gave us food and beer. It was a bunch of families making merry. Too see more of holi we went to a big beach. We were surrounded by around 100 young men and I was grabbed a few times in inappropriate places. We left with the help of police and their big bamboo sticks. Sitting with Mark afterwards I asked. "What do we need to do to empower women so this does not happen again?" But together we realized it is not women empowerment that is the question here. It is education of our young men. No one has ever crossed this line with me ever. Sex is extremely taboo in India. White women on Hollywood movies are confusingly liberated to India men. If nothing regarding sex is talked about then how do hormone happy teenagers know how to appropriately vent their sexual frustration? We have to start talking about this. We need to educate the young and be open to talk about what is embarrassing. If you ever get hit on inappropriately use this opportunity to talk about ok vs not ok behavior. I need to start doing this. I need you to help with this too. Our silence only hurts women. I know.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Volunteer Work in India

Folks, we are actually doing volunteer work on our trip. Here are a few pictures from our volunteer placements in Mumbai, India.

Pictures of: Di doing Art Therapy with the people at the center

The boys from the "drop-in" center on an Educational Visit to the Nehru Science Center- It is basically the Indian version of the Franklin Institute.

Mark at the on the beach during the overnight Group Home Camp

Mark with the boys from the "drop-in" center on a picnic to Sanjay Gandhi National Park

Urban Cowboy

Well folks you would think with all this world travelling and social work my views on life and outlook on the world would have changed the most! Alas, it has not been the case. The real change has come in my appearance. If you know me I am a huge fan of the shorts and a t-shirt look. In fact the less clothes the better! But Mumbai has many different issues that have influenced my current clothing style.

  1. YOU HAVE TO WEAR PANTS! I would personally like to change this norm, but I don’t know if this goofy, curly haired American is the one for this job! I have tried my best to flaunt my chicken legs as much as I can though.
  2. The air quality is 7th worst in the world! Breathing Mumbai air has been compared to smoking 2 packs of cigarettes a day.

I have become what people might call an, “Urban Cowboy.” I have provided two pictures, one of my normal appearance and one of my “new image” that has come about because of my time in Mumbai.

Please look at them carefully b/c I have changed a few things from one picture to the next. Try to see if you can spot all the differences. Answers next post!

P.S. I didn’t buy the jeans they were a gift from a friend!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Cows Own Mumbai!

Dear friends, I am happy to inform you that there is a new king I town! Tata Cooperation’s, Bollywood and Indicom have been over thrown by what I’ve recently been informed is “Man’s REAL best friend” the cow! Instead of stray dogs, which they have plenty of, they also have stray cows that come and go as they please in the city. From what people have told me about the Hindu religion was Lord Kristhna’s views his mother in the image of a Cow. Luckily, there have not been any cow and run cases during my pedestrian travel!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Cheese Puffs...The Breakfast of Champions!?!?!?

Cheese puffs!

The power food that was chosen for 16 young men as they prepared to explore personal growth and tackle the subject of sexual education as none other than Chai, Upama (a traditional India Breakfast food), and CHEESE PUFFS! How cool is that! America was great enough to invent such an unhealthy snack, but India has taken it to the next level! Cheese Puffs for breakfast! Mothers all across the globe are scared!