“People always ask me when I am going to come down from the clouds. Never. I like this view.”
Imagine you are sitting on the back of a motorcycle, riding down a winding dirt foot path through fields of rice and sugar cane. All you can see in front of you is a bright orange turban, as the driver is a friendly Punjabi (Sikh) man, the kind of grandpa any child would be lucky to have. To your right are a few teenagers jumping into the largest pile of hay you have ever seen, and to your left, at least twenty ox grazing in a field. Now let’s back up a bit so I can tell you how I got here.
The man in the orange turban, Surat, escorted me out of the area after my encounter with the not so friendly Indian men, and en route, invited me to his house. Like the other Indians who have taken me in, his whole family was curious and generous, and treated me straight away like part of the family.
They own acres of fields of rice and sugar cane, as well as a few fields of mango trees and vegetables, and at least ten cows. They live on the farm with a few other families (relatives of some kind), and a few servants who help in the fields.
Though they do have an indoor kitchen, the women normally cook outside over an open flame (using cow dung as their fuel).
And like always, it was the children who were my favorites.
This family was Sikh, a religion started in the Punjab region (Eastern India and Pakistan) in the 15th century by a guru, though they now have ten. There are about 30 million followers which makes it the fifth largest organized religion, a fact that surprised me since I hadn’t realized it was so large. I have found the Sikh to be my favorite people in India, and because of is, I am much more willing to trust them.
The family then passed me on to some of their relatives who lived 50km down the road, and I spent another two days with them. To my relief, the sixteen year old girl spoke great English as she was in an English medium school (a few other members of her family spoke a few words as well). This made it a lot easier and more enjoyable for me since it does get tiring after a while never understanding what people are talking about.
One of their servant’s children took a liking to me, so I spent a lot of my time outside with her.