Monday, March 28, 2011

Letting off a Little Steam

I've been looking for some advice lately and I'm not sure where to get it. I don't have the good fortune of having close friends I can call or text right now. I don't have family around that would have any idea of what I'm talking about or going through. I can't talk to my husband because he just doesn't get it, I know because I've tried. That's really my only real complaint against him - he doesn't have any sympathy for things he has never experienced and he doesn't really try to. But I can't be but so bothered by that, it's difficult for any person to imagine the frustration or emotions the coincide with events they have never experienced whether good or bad.

So I've been scrolling the blogs. I didn't really find what I was looking for but noticed one blog that motivates me to post what I don't like about my new life in India. First a disclaimer:

My family is nothing like the horror stories I've been reading about. The immediate family has not in any way tried to restrict my freedom, they have not judged me harshly for the things I don't do their way, they have went out of their way to make me comfortable, and they treat me more like a daughter than a daughter in law. I'm not treated like a slave or worker bee, I'm treated like a princess. I can do what I want, just about whenever I want. Of course there are times when someone else is in the way or takes way too long to get ready to do whatever I'm doing with me. But within reason I can pretty much do whatever I want.

1. It's too freaking dirty. I've always kept everything in my life sanitized. I'm not Suzy home maker and there may be dirty clothes in a pile in the corner but you better believe the floor under them is almost completely germ free and there is no dust on my baseboards. That will never happen in India. I don't even think it's possible. There is so much dirt here I wouldn't even know where to begin sanitizing and by the time I finished the second room the first would be just as dirty as it was before I started. My beloved husband doesn't seem to fully understand how much more difficult it is to keep a stark white body clean in this atmosphere either lol. (Regardless, I will still take as long as I feel I need in the shower..ty.)

2. Though I have complete freedom I feel like a freaking child. I'm a grown woman who has had to learn how to bathe all over again, learn a completely new way of eating - diet, timing and all, and I feel like I can't do much for myself. The restrictions are mostly of my own making but I make them so I don't look like an idiot or get myself in trouble. Nevertheless it does frustrate me I can't go get a haircut at the beauty parlor because I don't speak the language well enough and I'm sure the local parlor has never cut fine hair before. It frustrates me that if I think of something I want or need I don't know where to find it and I can't go get it because I can't (and wouldn't want to) drive here. And I hate driving!

Yes, I know these things should not be fretted over but I'm going through a phase. It was my goal to post information on this blog that could help someone somewhere with their experiences going through similar circumstances. So I guess I have to post all about my craziness too and not just the craziness of the Indians I deal with.

3. I really didn't want to believe my hubby when he tells me stories of some men and how retarded they can be in this country. However, the longer I live here the more I see he is right. Like for example: we were shopping a few days ago and walked down a popular street to get to a different store. Some man rode by on a bike and stopped his bike to yell to me that I had something on my forehead. Hubby said his tone was such that he was trying to insult me. Well, jokes on him because I didn't understand a word he said for one, and on top of that I was wearing a bindi. So had I understood him I wouldn't have picked up on his tone and would have thought he was pointing out the obvious. In the words of Carlos Mencia... Dee dee deeee!

4. I also don't like the jackass on the terrace 4 houses away, or the one across the road and to the left. If either of them find out I'm in sight they come running to their terrace. One of them even held out his phone to play music for me to see if I would listen. The other just stares, trying to catch a glimpse of what I don't know. I am always fully covered. Eventually the newness of my white skin will have to wear off...but come on- it's been 3 months!

5. The neighbors don't respect their own customs. Case and point, it's considered disrespectful to try to look into anyones house but no one told the women next door that. If I open my bedroom door they can see my closet and a tiny piece of floor. Somehow though it never fails, they are always staring incessantly in my door if it is open. I'm not sure what they hope to catch, but it's fun to roll my eyes at them lol. Yes, I am still a stubborn American and even India can't take that away from me.

I think that's the bulk of my frustrations. I don't have a lot to complain about, only minor irritations but I have to get them out somewhere. No place like my trusty anonymous blog lol.


  1. It sounds like the family itself is being nice to you, but I sympathize with the lack of privacy thing. I am watched almost every moment that I'm in India. It doesn't matter what I'm wearing or what I'm doing, bored housewives pull themselves from their soap operas and appear behind their window grills so they can monitor me. Ugh. So often when I'm there I just want to have a burqa. You are very brave to live there.

  2. I understand your pain! I'm sorry :(

  3. I totally relate to the feeling like a child thing. Not being able to find the light switch or open the gate to get to the outdoor bathroom in the middle of the night - actually having to WAKE my husband to get help to go to the bathroom - what am I, three years old? I was like, I just want to go HoOoOoOME!

  4. Blonde Bahu...Yeah, the privacy thing sucks. I'm not sure I will ever get used to it. Until I at least become more tolerable I will be using the door locks frequently. I haven't thought about the burqa but I'm leaning more and more towards purdah (not leaving the house or being seen by neighbors lol) only problem is I'm am not reclusive and probably too stubborn to become that way.

    Gori, yes that is exactly how I feel. I've said the same thing - "what am I, three years old?" and explained it to my husband just that way. I feel like even more of a child when I get frustrated because that stupid gate pinched my finger and then I feel like crying like a baby lol. I can't imagine ever being that way had I not moved to India.

  5. You must learn to drive a scooter - so fun...


    So fun & pick up some insults & some basic punjabi knowledge...

    I hope you find your place & things get better.

    I am insanely jealous that you are in Amritsar when I am not...

    Feel free to email me at if I can be of service & PHULEASEE post pics - i love ASR!

  6. Lol, I'm not sure I have the guts to drive here lol. I am learning Punjabi and have been for a while...I just can't stick to it lol. Of course now I have more motivation to pick up some colorful phrases though, so we shall see.