A Weekend in Pune

A lot is going on here in Pune! Saturday after the afternoon practice, my apt. mates, Tessa and Sally, and I went on the roof of our building to watch the full moon rise. We were early enough to watch the village behind us. A continual draw! As it got darker the bats were starting to pass over with the large black birds that inhabit the park across the street from our apartment complex. We decided to climb higher up on a metal ladder probably for maintenance so we could get an even better view. After about an hour and no moon, we decided to head down. We got to the door of the rooftop and it was locked! So we just started yelling down the side of the building and someone came. Now a large padlock is on the metal door to the roof! Good it wasn’t a high-rise and that everyone has windows open and could hear us.

Sunday is a day off! There seems to be some kind of election going on which consists of a band, a little truck with a loud speaker and singing and speeches. It is very loud I assume to cover lots of territory as it moves along. That also means in our windows too! So Sunday morning we decided to walk down the road of the community behind us. Which we did and it was interesting and nice and inhabited with small lanes of houses or rooms so packed in next to each other that only one person could pass at a time. Everyone was friendly and the smaller children followed us for a while and loved getting their pictures taken. It all works so well and mutli-generations of families all together cooking, bathing, visiting, cleaning. In front of most of the individual dwellings were beautiful old looking pots with pretty brass handles and designs that were used for boiling water.

After walking through our neighbors’ community we walked a little further to the Om Market which is just a little larger than the Maharashtra Store. We were out of flour for chapati, basmati rice, dal, tomatoes, and in search for some tahini. All was found except the tahini. Then on to the very large vegetable and fruit market across the street. It has expanded by moving more out into the street. It is beautiful and fresh and colorful. We bought cauliflower, green beans, sprouted mung beans, mint, squash similar to a pumpkin, cilantro and tomatoes. I had a lot of fruit at home. Right now the pomegranates are really good. I like the small bananas and the mangoes are good. The ones now are different from the ones in June and early July.

From there we walked and I bought some flowers at a flower stall. There really wasn’t much choice but any flower in a pitcher would look alive and fresh in our apt. Next was the sweets store and some Indian breakfast snack food. The sweets are fun to look at and we got 3 hearts (Valentines coming up) that are covered in edible silver, and an assortment of other delicacies. The hearts ended up being the best because they weren’t too sweet. The lentil bread/cake with its red or green chutneys was going to be out breakfast. Headed home we stopped at the curd shop and Sally bringing her own metal container got it filled with fresh yogurt. A walk home and a lovely brunch Indian style. After lunch and a rest we headed out to Parvarti Temple. Parvarti is Shiva’s wife/consort and this temple is the oldest one in Pune and very high up above the city. There are lots of steps and a panoramic view! It was fun and there is a museum there that was nice to see old relics from earlier times in Pune history. A rickshaw ride home and back to our home here in Pune. It was an interesting, fun and educational weekend and home by 8!

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