Thursday, April 15, 2004

Mango Season 

My fruit salad at home this morning (prep time: 40 minutes, with triple washing and peeling and dicing; eat time: about 4 minutes) was made up of four different kinds of mangoes, all sublime. Also "oranges" that are like oversized tangerines, "sweet lemons" that are like midget sweet grapefruit, bananas and a fruit whose name escapes me that looks like a cross between a kiwi and a potato and tastes like a divine date. The rain, when it comes, does not mess around. The consensus has been that we will not see rain for a while, as we deal with unrelenting heat. Even moved the pale blue rainsuit I kept stashed in Scooty's seat (along with mosquito repellant, antiseptic wipe, pen and paper, candy for the kids, peanuts for the dogs, toothbrush and paste, water, clear glasses and a cap for keeping the dust at bay while driving and whatever other stuff spills out of bags and finds its home there.) to a high shelf at home, not expecting rain till I guessed next month. Today, from email place, inform guy at desk as I see eery quality of light at sunset: "rain, coming". He laughed and without disagreeing, disagreed. Silly western lady fantasies. Rain not coming until the monsoon hits for reeeal. Not an hour later, rain pelts down from the heavens sending people running for cover and candles as the power also goes and hail starts shooting down, with streams for gutters and pools for streets. Still here, as the generator keeps the computer humming and fans turning as the dark worlds outside are cooled and drenched, once more.

Have been here for just about a month, to the day. Feels like much longer, already. Buddy, or Ratdog, as he has been fondly dubbed by the yogastudents, is looking and acting much more like a dog and less than something that crawled out of a shallow grave in Pet Sematary. His fur has few patchy spots left and though his eyes still run, some days, he is always playful and we wrestle and he knows the sound of Scooty so even though I don't live on his street anymore, he still runs after me when I drive down. I give him peanuts or biscuits or leftovers pretty much every day. He is a veggie dog. His teeth are ground down to stubs and like a lion tamer I put my arm in his mouth as we playfight- the skin will not break. A mostly veggie dog (perhaps he's caught lizards or insects), Buddy knows to hang out at the right times outside the shala and greet us after practice- he gets much attention and pieces of coconut gange, or flesh, that he wolfs down with relish. He is also beginning to respond to his name, and is proudly wearing a scrappy blue and red torn collar, garnering much respect and more envy from the neighborhood German Shepards and Retrievers who bark at him from behind closed gates. Their tails are wagging, though.

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