Thursday, February 02, 2006

The Late Night Report

...from a very tired Siren

It's now a quarter to eleven, and I am tuckered out from a whole day and night of being the star attraction... all but stealing the show from the bride. (Totally not my "Wish and will" but, "What to do?" in Indglish.) I spent last night from about 10 pm and all day (and I mean all day, from 5.30 am onward) with the family, and only left the wedding hall at 6 pm. Then I was presented as the main attraction at yet another Indian household for a special Satyanarayana puja they were having. Of course, everyone wanted their photo taken with me, or taken with my magical digital camera, or both, and I thrilled all by handing out business - or "visiting" cards, in local parlance - right and left. I had them printed up, 100 cards for 25Rs. This was before my Blogsite. Next I will get a batch made with only my blog address. Then they will all tune in for the promise of seeing their own photo on the American girl's blog!

Finding Prince Charming
Some people have asked me how the parents found the right boy for Parimala.The boy's father was a friend, a former colleague, of Parimala's grandfather. He suggested to the grandfather that perhaps the boy (Pramod)might be suitable for Parimala. Since the grandfather knew the boy's father for a long time, that helped things along (he was not a total stranger from the newspaper matrimonial ads - a very common method).

Back in November, the boy's parents came (sans boy) to "view" Parimala at her house. Actually, the boy lost his mother about a year back, so this was the boy's father and some assorted female and male relatives who came. At that time they took Parimala's photo. Remember, she had not yet seen a photo of Pramod. Additionally, the Vedic astrological charts of the two young people were compared for compatibility. I need to get the whole chronology straight. She told me last night at about 10pm but it got confusing. I will find out more at the reception party tomorrow.

In case I did not mention this before, Parimala is Phuni's classmate from Hindu College here in Guntur, a prestigious university. They both have just recently graduated with degrees - BA - in Mathematics. The boy's family are Telugu, originally from this district, but have"shifted" to Mumbai some 40 years ago for work. As you probably know, there are Telugu, Tamil, Malayam etc. communities in all major cities because they have moved there for work.

Parimala was a good choice for me to work with because she is a very easygoing, confident, grounded girl. She is attractive without being glamourous or image-conscious, and intelligent without being pretentious. Also, her family (all 10 of them) accepted me with just a smile and a wave of the hand when they were told "Ameddicanjurnliss studying Indian traditions." Very, very laid back. No stress about having a foreigner sleeping on the floor next to them.

I was impressed by the young man, Pramod. Not only is he good looking, but he has an intelligent face and a quiet, dignified manner. His younger brother, Arun, is a team manager at a major Mumbai call center, IC2. Now I have an open invite to go and study the lives and dreams and hopes of the call centre kids of Mumbai. Arun had mastered all the American catchphrases taught by the accent trainer "and stuff like that, you know."

I took nearly 200 photos today alone. Tomorrow Vijay, my "production assistant" and I will continue doing my photo essay. I am teaching Vijay, the multimedia student, how to take a good photo. What makes a good photo? A photo that tells the story.

They are closing the net place, more later.

P.S. Once again, I am buying a train ticket to Chennai.
Let's see if it works this time. (!!)

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