Matt and Ben. Did I mention we found a cheaper, better liquor store that sells Budweiser and Fosters? Not delicious beers in any other setting, but compared to the KF, utter bliss.
Ryan looking at Anna Kournikova in 3D. Gotta love Maxim.
It would have been fun if it weren't so damned depressing. Oh, but Ben had to stay. He was none too pleased about it, as you can imagine. Also, we did, in fact, get two new crew members for Matt's unit - Chris and Andrew. I have met Chris, he's nice, and British, so we call him Little Britain (he tried to retaliate by calling me "Big America", but I kindly asked him to stop as it brought up some unresolved weight issues).
Shriram and Little Britain. They were playing Tetris on that computer. Ahh, gotta love engineers.
I have not met Andrew (he's on 12 hour days), but I will. Soon and very soon. Anyway, so now I'm all bummed out because I have no one to watch LA Ink with in the mornings after breakfast (a Sveta, Ryan and Caitlin ritual) because everyone works. Bleh. Working is soooo overrated.
In other news, pardon me if this makes me sound stupid, but I didn't know that after rainy season India gets blisteringly hot again. Its been in the 90s every day for the past couple weeks, with no rain in sight, so I guess I can officially say goodbye to the monsoons. Perhaps they will visit us just one more time, but I doubt it. Today I went to weather.com to check the temperature in Baroda, and it said it was 93 degrees, and under the section where it usually says "Partly cloudy" or "Mostly sunny", today it said "Smoke". Hmmm. What do you suppose that means? Is it a polite reference to the ever-loving pollution that blankets the industrial outskirts of the city day after day? Or did the weather.com satellites pick up on a massive smoke cloud from some huge trash burn they were conducting in the city? Who can know these things? I guess I should mention that after checking the forecast, I went outside, and it did, in fact, seem smokey out there. There are always random piles of trash burning outside, so maybe I have just grown accustomed to it. Maybe I don't even notice how the sun never shines through the big black ash cloud anymore. Doubtful, but maybe.
While I was out sniffing the air and trying to keep busy so I don't fall into a deep and unsettling depression with my newly found loneliness, a funny thing happened. I decided to cross the street early for fear of the big intersection. As I walked towards the gap in the median, a small beggar child noticed my blindingly white skin from across the road and crossed over to get some money. Lucky me, I noticed her at the same time she noticed me, so I waited until she got almost the whole way across the street (this is no easy task in India), and then I began crossing to the opposite side. Just as I was congratulating myself on cleverly stranding the beggar child on the other side, she ran back across traffic twice as fast as before and pinched my arm! I think she did it with actual malice this time for making her cross the street twice. Can't really blame her, I guess. No, wait a minute, I can! Anyway, I knew it would be a long walk to the store if I couldn't shake her, so I quickly changed course and took the shortcut through the "potholes, trash and cows" road. She did not follow, and I was left in peace. Once you get past the beginning huge trash pile that always has cows grazing from it, it's really not a bad walk. Also, there were several women carrying bowls of rocks on their heads and dumping them into the potholes to fill them. I'm thinking about hiring them to come work in Chicago. Is that offensive? Probably.
What else has happened recently? Not a lot. Last weekend was kind of a dud, but we did catch sight of a rare white-throated Kingfisher (the bird, not the beer) in the courtyard of the hotel.
White-throated Kingfisher. Check out the beak on that one.
I got really excited and pointed it out to several staff members, only realizing later (after Krishnan told me) that the Kingfisher is actually very common in India. Thus the naming of the beer and the airline. However, it seems to me that they can't be all that common if I've never seen one here before. I mean, I have literally spent hours staring out that window looking at the birds and lizards. Hours.
He's so regal.
I guess that about does it for my update. Fear not, faithful blog-followers... now that everyone is gone, I shall surely get right back into the swing of blogging about random nothingness soon enough. Oh, but only for a week. On October 11, 2010, I will embark on my Extreme Thai Roadwives Adventure (ExTRA). I get so hopped up making plans for it that I literally start shaking in my seat. It's going to be LEGENDARY. But more on that later. In closing, I would like to stay that No. 1, I got no comments, attaboys or otherwise, on my last blog topic. Come on, guys. Three miles! It's a big deal. Like me.
I couldn't not post this. Katie looks so ridiculous.