Thursday evening. Since Wednesday morning, which was only yesterday but feels like forever ago, everything has been hunky-dory. And today is probably the first day I feel settled. Or not so much settled, but maybe totally sure of where I am... if that makes any sense.
I changed location 2 days ago. First I was staying at a hotel, which I thought was the "bomb". When I was told me and the trainer, Anjana, were going to be moved, I had geared myself up for it be "squaller". But I couldn't have been more wrong. Wouw.. It's a villa they call it, in Indian terms. But really it's an apartment and more than I could even have asked for. I have my own room, en-suite, tv, kitchen, sitting room.. So so great! Me and Anjana, who teaches us each day, will be staying there for the remainder of the course. She's from Calcutta, and, even though she's never been to Cochin before either, has almost taking me under my wing. It's so sweet. We're like a pair.. Each night we walk down these crazy streets amongst the tooting cars, the overloaded buses, the shabby scooters, the barreling trucks.. We walk but cannot talk..it's too loud, too dangerous almost to forget about the traffic and to stop paying attention, even if it's only for a few seconds. It's something I really have to get used to: crossing the roads! Not an easy task I can tell you!
There are so many little things that amaze me.. They are all so minor but added up they can be a lot, but not overwhelming either.. This is my day:
I wake up in the morning and have a massive big smile on my face. It's usually around 6 am and already the tooting has started and the trucks are barreling and that's all so fine.. I smell of mosquito-repellent as I've smothered myself with it the night before. The fan is blowing and it's muggy but still I sleep with long sleeves, just to protect myself from bites. And it's all so fine. The bed is so short, as the average person in India is small. I fit in so well. I then do yoga and some affirmations. As I still adjust to this crazy life, I find strength and stability within, as it will set me up for a fantastic day and lets doubts or fears so far from my mind. And my day continues to be fantastic. I get picked up by Shareef to go to the course. I feel like I'm being chauffeured. I feel privileged as suddenly I'm in the middle of the tooting, shouting, chaos. There are women knocking on the window of the car begging for money. But I ignore and sit on the backseat and observe the world that I once only knew from the movies and from television. I was now in that world and as I'm observing them, this world is also observing me, as I'm the only white person in sight. We are both slightly shocked by the sight of each other..
Class starts and me and my peers are all like children again. All adults but so eager to learn and to find out more about the world of teaching English. For hours I forget where I am. Until a truck rushes past and makes the building we're sitting in, shake..constantly! Then I remember.. wouw this is India. I sit amongst these 7 women who are dressed in these beautiful traditional clothes, with their Hindi's between their eyes. So beautiful. And the tea-lady who comes in every hour, asks me: "What happened to your skin? Why like this?" She wants to know why I am fair and have freckles. I say it's normal and smile at her innocence. I speak with people and they agree with whatever it is I ask or say and they bob from side to side to give approval. It's not nodding, but it's different. Again it makes me smile. The English they speak with their crazy accents, reminds me of characters from Eastenders (those who are familiar..remember Sanjay and Geeta??!!) and I feel all fuzzy inside each time - and that's not because it reminds me of Eastenders by the way, but because it's India!!
For hours I forget what's outside. And that's fine. It makes the process of adjusting to India, all the more easy. I sit and am amazed I made it here and am doing this. I tell myself I am in the middle of creating so much. And I'm not alone. I have this country at my feet; If that's what I want..
I'm only here 4 full days, and already I can feel a change. I feel like I've grown, just by getting myself to this place. So no matter how I feel or whatever happens, it's already amazing.. For now, I'm speechless again - it's not the first time it's happened since I've been here.. I'll leave on that note!