Friday, 18 January 2013

Meet the family

Yesterday, after a lavish breakfast in the hotel (a slightly odd but very yummy mix of western and Indian food items) Mum and I spent the morning by the pool, followed by a massage in the spa! It was very fancy in there and judging by the amount of pain inflicted, my back and shoulders needed a good kneading after the plane! I am happy to say it was still incredibly relaxing and I am feeling much looser and les knotted. After being given flower garlands to "respect our divinity" (!) Mum went off to have a manicure and I stayed by the pool in the afternoon shade, making some friendship bracelets for the Sangam friendship bracelet project.

That evening we were picked up by my Dad's cousin Mehli and his driver took us across the city to their flat. We had a very nice gathering with lots of family (my great-aunt Mehroo, my great-uncle Pesi, Dad's cousin Zubin and his new wife, my second cousin Shireen and her husband and Dad's cousin Avi). We chatted for a while and then had a lovely meal (at 10 o'clock in the evening-it felt very late!) with different curries. After dinner Avi took me to her flat (right around the corner, to show me how to properly wear a sari which she gave me. That was very exciting and I felt like a proper Indian- well almost!

This morning Mum and I took a walk just down the road to the Gateway of India. We did not go inside (we will later on) but took lots of photos of the gateway and the hotel which we had a great view of. As you wander around the Gateway there are lots of street sellers selling things from jewels and watches to the most amazing smelling street-food (best not to eat and just smell if you have a "weak" western stomach!)

More sunbathing and swimming was enjoyed before Mehli came at 1600 to take us out shopping. I really wanted some more traditional Indian clothes such as Kurtis (tunics) but Mum and I had no idea where to start! We went to a store called Westside which does a mix of Indian and Western clothing. I ended up with about 7 Kurtis, a dress and several pairs of the leggings worn with the Kurtis. They should be excellent for Sri Lanka because they are light but keep you covered! After that we wandered the streets, going past the market stalls and seeing a few sights. We stopped at one stall and each had a coconut chopped in front of us from which we drank the water. It was refreshing, delicious and apparently very nutritious. Mehli has one every day.

We also went past the first Starbucks in India so naturally I had to take a peek. It was very grand and amazingly decorated. They don't have the same variety of drinks that we have but they have some unique ones such as a Green Tea frappucino...May have to try that one!

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