Sunshine Blogger Award

This Door is Alarmed was nominated for this award by my cherished friend Novus Lectio . She is a very well read writer, with a curious mind for investigation. She presents a nimbly versatile blog, which includes a tranquil nemesis of enquiry through her ‘inspiring’ snapshots, her pictures, which demonstrate her unique style as an artist, and her wonderful real-life stories. I recommend a perusal when you are passing through!

Rules: On this site, rules do not exist. Instead of the R word, we have the easy-going and eternally more satisfying G word: ‘guidelines’. Where the R word ensnares your footsteps, spilling your smiles sideways to cruelly evoke our strict shirt and tie schooldays, guidelines comfort and caress, making compromises alongside necessity.

-Thank the blogger who nominated you.
-Use the “Sunshine Blogger Award” logo on your post.
-Answer the 11 questions the selector asks of you.
-Nominate 5-11 bloggers you want to give the award to.
-Ask the following bloggers that you selected 11 questions of your own.

Novus’s Questions:

If you could travel in a time machine, where and when would you travel to?

Quite possibly, a time machine would be the most dangerous device ever created by mankind, and the use of it would be highly irresponsible.

..and just like a well-greased Politician, I have side-tracked the entire question! My answer: I wouldn’t go back in time, even though it would be tempting, I would stay right where I am in the unpredictable present, learning from the beautiful wealth of knowledge we often call ‘mistakes’.

Which extinct animal would you love to bring back to life?

The Woolly Mammoth, obviously! His name would be Stumpy.

Who needs combustion engines when you have a Woolly Mammoth—a quadrupedal prehistoric woolly mountain!

Just like people dress up their dogs, I would make Stumpy a giant, yellow rain jacket and booties to splash around in the puddles, and I would take him walking around the local fields at the weekend for exercise, and throw a giant ball for him to chase off the leash. Unfortunately, I would need to borrow an Olympic-sized swimming pool to bathe him, and follow him in a bulldozer to collect the poop, as I do not think anywhere makes poop scoop bags large enough—or not yet anyway.

Yes, I can definitely see this Woolly Mammoth thing catching on. Perhaps Woolly Mammoths never went extinct at all, but future people-kind read this message, saw the instant potential of the mammoth-mobile, and used that darned time machine to remove them from the past and place them in their own present, where they dress them up in giant yellow raincoats and booties and call them Stumpy.

Would you rather be Rich but without friends (money can’t buy you friends but they can buy you acquaintances) or have lots of lovely friends but very little money?

I avoid complex social situations, even though, according to some people, I am good at interacting and socialising. Little do they know, behind the well-practiced smile, most often I am a thumping hot knot of a mess, tossing and tearing to crawl out of my own skin.

BUT, I am not a materialistic person either and do not hanker after lots of money to buy lots of possessions. Too many possessions make me feel queasy—I cannot stand clutter and my house tends to be more minimalist than materialistic. I have always valued experiences over possessions. Is it not said somewhere by someone that moderation is the greatest virtue—can I not apply this logic to the question, and have a little of both?

What is your favourite meal to have in a restaurant?

I have been lucky enough to sample food from a lot of countries, and in my experience, whether it is New York or New Delhi, the local food is always superior to the fancy restaurants. It is an experience, and you usually get a lot more for your money, in both meal and memories.

Of all eateries, one stands out in particular—a Dahl Bhat (a lentil and rice dish) I found while trekking the foothills of the Himalayas in Nepal. When it came to Dahl Bhat, the more out in the sticks you are, the tastier they are and the fresher the ingredients. This restaurant was not a restaurant in the typical sense of the word—it was a mud hut with some wooden benches under straw roofs, where a rough but brightly painted sign on a wooden plaque indicated to Sherpas that they could get a warm meal. Everything in Nepal is bright, as though India was bleeding colour over the border; clothes are colourful, buildings are colourful, prayer flags are colourful—everything is colourful. I had walked three full days through the leach-infested mud-swamped jungle to get there and I was ravenous!

The cook was a current bun sort of a woman, and was the busty, rotund and warm-hearted mother of a small traditional Nepalese family. She was clad in a painfully bright dress of floral design, neatly pinched in at her ample waist, her hair was thoughtfully pinned back to emphasise the lines of love and age that time had drawn upon her face.

Everything was made from scratch, using ingredients out of her garden or purchased from locals living in nearby villages—it was over a two day walk to get to the nearest town and there were no roads or cars in this area. She brought out steaming pot after steaming pot, piling our plates high. A moment later, she would waddle back out again, filling our plates with second and third helpings of everything from the lentil dahl to the curried vegetables. There seemed to be infinite refills of everything. As I sat, hungrily gorging myself with much-needed food, I reflected on where I was, in the middle of absolute nowhere, half the world away from home. It was beautiful—beautiful food, the beautiful company of my Sherpa and guide, and a view of infinite snow-capped mountains, their foothills  crossed by a rainbow of prayer flags, swaying gently in the breeze.

As my Sherpa slurped the last pieces of rice from his dirty finger tips, he smiled up at me and spoke in his broken English “Dahl Bhat power, twenty-four hour”.

That is one of my most memorable, and therefore favourite meals. I know I stretched the question like Plasticine, but I am not a big eater and am not particularly bothered by food, so this felt to be a more appropriate answer 🙂

Do you prefer Savoury or Sweet?

A lot is left unsaid in the English language. As a native speaker, I know that Novus is asking me about food, but perhaps if my English was as good as my Japanese, I might misinterpret and think you were actually talking about bedspreads or clothing, and my answer would be very different: I do not recommend sleeping under anything savoury—sweet I cannot vouch for—I know I would opt for a sheet of icing over Marmite or pickled onions—and I do not recommend trying to wear them either—although the icing may still take the biscuit there. If I did have pickled onion clothing, I do wonder how long they would last before I ate them—as anyone who knew me as a child will know how very fond I was of my Nan’s homemade pickled onions—and that really would leave me in more than a bit of a pickle—or more accurately, the complete lack of pickle!

Pickled or lack of pickle, and despite not usually being bothered by food, I am certainly more bothered by my savoury tooth than my sweet tooth.

Name one of your favourite Flowers

Teachers used to call certain children flower or petal. I was one of these children—I was not certain whether this was a form of endearment, whether the teacher had forgotten my name, or whether they were implying that I needed more light on my ivory skin.

My favourite flower is a daisy, because of my beautiful childhood memories making daisy chains with friends over the never-ending summer. It was my Grandad who taught me to do this. We were sitting on a bench at the end of my parents’ garden. I had seen the older girls at school making chains out of these delicate little many-petalled plants, but had not seen how to do it myself. Grandad showed me how easy it was, making a necklace of daisies he lay around my head. We worked on making the longest daisy chain ever made—I would fetch the daisies, and my Grandad would chain them—we were a daisy-chain-making-machine.

I did not stop making daisy chains for years after that—it was a well-stuck summer petally pastime. Every summer I would scour the ground for those little white petals with yellow centers, and idle my thumbs making necklaces. Throughout primary school, I used what Grandad had taught me to teach other younger girls how to make daisy chains too.

I made my last one a just few years ago—the summer my Grandad passed away. Now every time I see that summer yellow core and many white petals, I think of him.

Which is your favourite place in your country?

In my mind’s eye, I see ruby red slippers, heels clicking together and the words “There’s no place like home, there’s no place like home.”

I feel very privileged to have grown up in an old black and white quirky country cottage. The place oozes charm and character, in the wacky antiques placed in every nook and cranny, in the infuriatingly low ceilings that even I bump my head on occasionally, in the stairs made for mice and the brass candlestick holders that look to have walked out of the Victorian era—there is a story in every trinket, every wooden beam and every crevice. There is a plaque over the fireplace reading 1601, although I am not sure how accurate this is.  The bedroom I called mine for so many years had a window so low that you had to kneel down to be at eye level, and there are curious little steps in and out of almost every room. One day, my Dad decided to excavate the curiously wide wall between the living room and the kitchen. We found an old fashioned brick bread oven, beautifully made with a curved roof. Why had such a pretty feature been bricked up and plastered over? How many years had it been there hidden behind the wall? It is now a liquor cabinet to which my dad fixed a little glass door—a little glass door that the pretty Birman cat would tinker open late at night time. A little glass door that the pretty Birman cat would sneak through, and come to wake me or my brother up with affectionate head butts, purring mischievously. I wonder what other secrets there are to be found.

The home we experience our most pleasant childhood memories in seems to stick with us as adults in a feint cloud of nostalgia. Perhaps this is our favourite place, perhaps it is where we always think of as home, no matter how many homes we may live in afterwards.

What’s the best name for a pet?

Stumpy the Woolly Mammoth.

What type of blogs and posts do you most enjoy reading?

Carefully crafted or comical ones; I delight in the tuning and turning of cogs and the spillage of giggles.

If you won a holiday, what type would you prefer? A sightseeing holiday taking in lots of scenery? A beach holiday with lots of relaxing? An Adventure holiday with lots of activities? None of the above?

Occasionally, I wonder whether there are some people in life where the flip of a coin lands head up just a little more often, or a little less often than for most others, I am neither of these people. I am not lucky, I am not unlucky, I am a hard worker. I have worked carefully towards everything I have achieved. I am an inbetweener when it comes to luck, and winning a holiday never happens to inbetweeners. Feeling chuffed, I would pat the lucky heads-up winner on the back, and proceed to book myself a holiday in the usual fashion. It would be a cultural experience spent learning about locals in their everyday life.

Do you prefer to be extremely busy or extremely bored?

Boredom is a privilege. I have forgotten how to be bored, it is an art form perfected in childhood, a pleasure that no longer raises its head. As an adult, the mind is so busy defragging thought that it would be impossible for me to bore myself. Even on an 11 hour plane flight, I am happy just being with my thoughts and nothing else. When every other passenger is absorbed in films or other nonsense on the back of the seat in front, I am the only one who sits for hours with my eyes open and TV turned off—just thinking.

My Questions for Nominees:

  1. In your opinion, what is the happiest food, and why?
  2. What would you think I was referring to if I told you to ‘put it down’?
  3. Who is the most interesting person you have met, and what made them so memorable?
  4. Would you be a superhero or a sidekick, and what would your name be?
  5. If you could remove one letter from the English alphabet, what would it be, and what consequences do you see coming from it?
  6. What was the last thing you lost and never found? What do you imagine has happened to it?
  7. What significance does the number seven have to you? What memories do you associate with it?
  8. Young and completely broke or old and disgustingly rich?
  9. If a giant squirrel had commandeered your mode of transportation, whether car, moped, bike etc., and seemed to know how to make it work, what would you do to stop him?
  10. If you had your own coat of arms, what would I expect to find on them to describe you/ your family?
  11. How straight is straight?

My nominees:





Veiled Facet

Shaun Jones


Our Daily Scraps

The Little Mermaid


Mel GutiérFiction in My Head



32 thoughts on “Sunshine Blogger Award”

  1. I want that pet too!!! 😅😅😅😅

    I love cottages too. I find them charming and very homy.

    I didn’t know that sweet and savoury could be clothing! Wow!
    That was a sweet memory from Nepal. It sounded peaceful and yummy.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s fun to observe the childish side of yours and how well you pen/ present it. Something clicked inside with “Woolly- The Mammoth”. I remember being a toddler when I first saw a documentary about Mammoths on Discovery, and I immediately developed a fascination for them.
    Haha, imagine a mammoth clad in a yellow raincoat, a hat, and a red tie. Thank you for invoking these childhood memories of mine.

    The entire time I felt like reading my own subconscious thoughts. Daal Bhaat is simplicity in disguise. I realized how effective the food is when I left home for studies, and since then I crave for food as simple as Daal Bhaat every day.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, what a beautiful comment. Thank you for this–it brought a smile to an otherwise cloudy week. I hope your week has been filled with Daal Bhaat style pleaures and woolly mammoths in raincoats and booties 🙂 I love hearing your thoughts and memories, you are clearly a very smart and insightful writer!

      I do hope things are going well for you, it has been a while since we chatted.


      1. Haha, those are probably the best praises I have heard since ages. But trust me, I would rather vouch for your writing than mine.

        These past six months have been quite eventful, to be honest. (Decide to forego my work and pursue masters from Kings).

        Unfortunately, no daal bhaat for me, but I learned how to cook Khichdi (equivalent). Although, I am yet to gain expertise in not burning it.

        How about you? You still seem to be in the midst of traveling.


      2. It is fantastic you are pursuing your studies, I hope you are enjoying it. Is that Kings College, London?

        I have never tried Khichdi, but if it is anything like daal bhaat then it is a must! Is that an Indian dish? I am impressed you cook! How did you learn? I cannot even throw together a stir fry without causing a culinary catastrophe and/or injuring myself😲

        Yes, still off on various travels. I depart for Japan in 8 days. I am driving around the main island for a month, and as I am visiting some pretty remote places, I have been learning Japanese very busily for the past year. I am just about conversational, but certainly not good at it!

        Have you been travelling anywhere recently?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I am in the midst of applying for my visa. You are correct, Kings College, London it is. Although I am finding it difficult to process while working with an MNC.

        Oh, you should try Khichdi. It’s one of the most simple food in existence (termed boiled “rice and pulses”). Global restaurants are serving this as a delicacy these days (US250$) for a regular Indian subcontinent dish. 😱

        Haha, I learned to cook while experimenting in a chemistry lab. Realised, cooking rice in a pressure cooker is easier than adding a catalyst in a beaker. Although results have been the same in both cases. 😂

        How do you manage to keep yourself together with so much of traveling? I end up craving for home food within a month.
        I always wanted to visit Japan (mainly because of their anime and manga). Konichiwa SHE San! XD

        Been 8 months when I last traveled (although it was an old cave in Himalayas).

        Liked by 1 person

      4. ボリ-ング バ-グさあん , こんにちはもう一度!🙂 (Hello again Boring Bug!)

        Well done for getting a place at Kings. It is a good university. What is an MNC though? I am not familiar with this initialism.

        A delicacy, huh! Then it is done–on your advice, Khichdi is now on the menu! (assuming I can find it somewhere–I live in the middle of nowhere, nothing but farms, forests and hills here!) I love that you learned to cook it through chemistry 😊 is that what you are studying at Kings?

        I only go travelling far afield twice a year, once for a month, and the other for just under a month. Other than that we have a few weekend trips. Travel is expensive! 🙂

        You went to the Himalayas 😊 such a breathtaking place! Which side did you see? I trekked through part of the Nepalise Himalayas a couple of years ago passing Chisapani and ending in Bhaktapur. It was very beautiful but the leeches that fell out of the trees and sucked you dry were not so beautiful😆😆. Where would you like to go next?


      5. Arighato She San! 🙂

        Oh, have you been to Kings College? Ah, MNC is an abbreviation for a Multi National Company.

        If it’s cooked right, I am sure you won’t be dissapointed. Haha, well that chemistry comparison was slight of a joke. I shall be pursuing my Masters in Law (International Business Law) from Kings. Have come a long way from Science to Law. 🙈

        Oh there is no comparison to Himalayas except for the Alps. I went to it’s lower ranges in the state of Uttarakhand. Visited an ancient cave known as “Patal-bhubneswar” (literal meaning “Hell of the Universe”). It was the most unique experience ever, primarily because the entrance to the cave is from the peak of a mountain and you have to crawl 200 feet inside the cave (one person at a time) and the cave inside the mountain has historic carvings only to realize that it’s rather a series of caves within caves leading up North.

        Haha, I am yet to reach Nepal, couldn’t plan my travel it right. Leaches? Thankfully, I am yet to interact with one. 😆

        Traveling is indeed expensive. I used to explore heritage places in and around Delhi once a week, realised that the entire subcontinent is a living history. 😅

        I want to visit the mountains and the sea once, before I leave for Masters. Do you happen to have any suggestion(s)?

        Liked by 1 person

      6. No, I have not been to Kings College, but the name is well known. It is one of the Russell group of highly regarded universities in the UK. When I was choosing universities, I followed my subject choice, Linguistics, to the best uni that offered the course, which at the time was Manchester. Not many universities offered Linguistics then, perhaps this has changed now. Law is a great choice of subject and will (hopefully) lead to a highly lucrative career! Best of luck in your studies!

        I have never visited that place, despite visiting the Alps many times. What an enchanting experience! Perhaps I will add it to the bucket list. It may be many years before I go back to the Alps though 🙂

        I love that you have enjoyed some local history where you lived in India. Have you ever travelled further afield in India? I would recommend Nepal, if you are able, despite bordering with India, it is strikingly different. You will notice as soon as you cross the boarder, especially if you walk over it, as I happened to. 😆

        As for mountains, the High Tatra mountains are quite pretty in Slovakia, as are the High Atlas mountains in Morocco. Real sand dunes are also worth seeing, if you have not already. I can never get enough of the sea of sand and the beauty of it all. Namibia is a wonderful place for that.

        Beaches, hmmm. Not much of a lying-on-beaches sorta lass, but there are some very pretty beaches in Sardinia with clear water, such as Cala Gonone, but pretty beaches are quite easy to find if you take a satellite view on Google Earth. Of course, the Xanadu of idyllic beaches would have to be Bora Bora, but you need to have a very full wallet to get there, and for that reason, I have not been. Anywhere you can get to in French Polynesia is also supposed to be outstandingly beautiful. Iceland has a slightly different beach experience; a beautiful area called glacier lagoon where icebergs carve into a lake and float down into the sea. They are washed up on the black volcanic beach and can be sat on. It is spectacular after high winds.

        But most of all, it is most fun to go out into the world and find your own xanadu. Go, explore, and live life to the brim. It is far better to find your own special corner of the world than to go and visit someone else’s 🙂


      7. I have been to Manchester once (as a teenager). It’s a beautiful place. I remember having an unconditional offer to pursue master from University of Manchester back in 2015. Although, the specific course I needed was in Kings. But I am afraid whether rejecting UCL, Edinburgh and Manchester was the correct choice.

        Ah, lucrative career is difficult in the present days. It’s highly competitive out here. I tell upcoming graduates to unlearn what has been taught in law schools because the field is totally different.

        Oh, that place is not in the Alps. Is in the lower ranges of Himalayas (state of Uttarakhand, India). But it is indeed an enthralling experience, also the fact that Uttarakhand is comparatively safer and people in the mountains are quite helpful.

        But if you happen to visit swiss alps, try touring the Leysin village. I visited it once as a teenager with my family. It’s the most beautiful place I have ever been to.

        Hahaha, I have been to all the corners of India, barring a few states. It’s quite common for people to trespass into the two states. You see, people in Nepal use Indian mobile sim cards and data connection because it’s convenient thant gaining their own. 😅 (Would be so fun to cross the boundary and reach nepal once).

        OMG, I have never been to that side of the world. SLOVAKIA, Morocco etc. except for in my dreams and pictures. I have been to the sand dunes in Thar Desert , India. It’s a serene experience.

        Haha, reaching those beaches would make me bankrupt (that too nobody would sponsor me for half of it). Ah, I have seen the videos of the Iceland lagoons. Few friends of mine visited it last year, it seems enthrallingly beautiful.

        Aren’t all places in their own a Xanadu? Every place has something unique to offer. A beauty we cannot ignore. Do you (too) happen to enjoy the sunsets of all the places you have been to?


      8. We never know until later whether the choices we make are the correct ones. There are a few times in life when pivotal choices are made, and often it seems to turn out for the best. One of those choices landed me a husband😆 sometimes, I figure we can only make the best decisions with the information provided to us, and then we have to make the best of what we have got, or change it. Thankfully, the husband bit worked out pretty well.

        Manchester–funny to hear someone call it a beautiful place. I always found it horribly claustrophobic. I have never been a city girl though, not for living in anyway. I grew up in a tiny village, surrounded by fields, so seeing so many people and buildings every day took some getting used to.

        I am so sorry, I did not know law was so difficult to get into. I wish you all the best in getting a job. If it helps, my friend started volunteer work for a firm during her studies, and as she was good, they kept her on in a paid position afterwards. She now earns a six figure salary.

        Ah, I probably should have noticed by the name that Uttarakhand is not in Switzerland. 😆😆 …I blame my blonde hair for making me daft between the ears 🤪

        I am so pleased you have seen so much of your country. It is a country I would like to explore more one day. One month just was not enough. I imagine it will be a while until I am back there though.

        I like what you said about every place being it’s own xanadu. Indeed, every place has its own merits. Nicely put.

        Sunsets, hell yes! 😆 as long as there are not too many biting insects. Those things love the taste of me. Most people come back with one or two bites without insect repellent, I come back with twenty after wearing repellent! 🙂 I think it is something to do with my paper white skin, it must be bright like a flashing neon sign saying “eat here”, or something. Perhaps darker skin would help, but sadly, fake tan is not an option for me. It doesn’t look right if you have very pale hair.

        Liked by 1 person

      9. This seems to be a life lesson (notes down in notebook). Haha, I am sure you two didn’t take this decision on a whim. Must have been well thought out. Probably that’s why it’s said: you are the result of the decisions you make through out your journey.
        Haha, come-on, I am sure you two compliment each other well [touch wood (superstitious side of me)].

        Manchester is nowhere near claustrophobic. Have you seen the metropolitan cities of India? Even the towns here are more conjusted than the new year celebration at Times Square 😅.

        I particularly remember Eyam village in Derbyshire. Believe me or not, I could barely digest that a village could be that developed. The very definition of villages and living’ changes in the Indian subcontinent.

        You must be so proud of your village roots. The first time I visited a farm was when I turned 19, that too because my train to Delhi got delayed next to a sugarcane farm. All the passengers treated themselves to a stomach full of sugarcane that day. 😂

        Honestly, I didn’t find law too difficult to get into, except for finding clients and surviving law firms. It’s equivalent to clearing the finals of the Commonwealth or chevening scholarship. Which I didn’t. 😆

        Hhaa, again making the blonde joke of yours. It’s rare to see people making jokes on themselves. (Dyes my hair blonde. Maybe I, too, can crack some blonde jokes now). 😅

        Whoa, I understand. Mosquitoes are a real issue here. Insects are like living companions though. We don’t feel comfortable in the absence of a monitor lizard roaming our walls (joking). I think it has to do more with body immunity. My cousins from UK and US faced the same issue. One of them did have a tanned skin (didn’t work out for him).

        Or probably mosquitoes are afraid of biting us, for the fear of themselves getting infected. 😂


      10. XD, seems as though you like to joke too 🙂 You make me chuckle!

        Yes, I wouldn’t still be with my husband if we didn’t compliment one another well. I am the dreamer and he is the ultimate pragmatist. It is a good recipe. I met him 14 years ago, and been married to him for eight of those.

        Yes, I agree, you have not seen claustrophobic until you have been to a major Indian city 🙂 but somehow, it all makes up the charm of the country. It is busy, very much more busy, but in a different way to Manchester. Once, I was in Varanasi at the end of a prayer festival of some kind. I have never seen so many people in my life. Quite memorable. Even the Ganges was cramped–the boats extending the shore in a floating mass that people stood on to get a better view of everything going on. India is wonderfully cultural.

        I love your train memory. That is something that would never happen in England. If a train did get stopped, nobody would dare get off, and certainly not eat anything growing on the roadside. Perhaps, the English are too uptight and need to live a little 🙂

        Immunity to mosquito bites sounds far more likely than flashing neon skin, although a country full of mosquito-infecting people may actually be a spark of genius–nearly a million people die every year from mosquito-borne illnesses. A race evolved to make the mosquitoes sick sounds like a beautiful twist of karma, and highly advantageous! 🙂 My friend was very sick with Dengue fever not long ago, caught from a mosquito bite when camping in Vietnam. It took her a long time to recover. Do people in India often catch mosquito borne illnesses such as Malaria or Dengue Fever, or is it fairly rare?


      11. Thank you. I am so glad that I made you smile. How good the world would be if we could make each other smile. 😛

        Am sorry. I missed your comment. Eight long years of companionship (14 in total), that’s a miracle indeed. Continue complementing each other.
        You won’t believe, my parents recently celebrated their 40th marriage anniversary. They already look so drained out.

        I have never been to Varanasi, although I have heard that its one of the cultural/religious center in India. Sometimes I feel like religious beliefs are convenience oriented. For example the Ganges river. Despite holding a religious significance in India it is the most polluted river globally. Haha, although faith can be a tricky thing to question. I once wrote a blog post on god and nature, and somebody out of nowhere got offended. XD

        Haha, trains or public transportation are an adventure in India. Probably people in India love trespassing, hence they ventured into the sugarcane farms while the train was stuck. 😆

        OMG, dengue is one of the most dangerous diseases. India sees a lot of dengue outrage every year. But if the humans evolved to that extent, so will the virus and disease with them. For example certain forms of bacteria have developed resistance to medicines already.

        Liked by 1 person

      12. Hi! I am so sorry it has been a while since we last communicated. I have been in Japan and testing my (apparent) lack of Japanese. I learned for a year but they speak too quickly.😆 At least I could read place names and road signs, which was useful as I was driving. It was a month of culture and temples and quite remarkable people.

        I hope you have been well. Goodness, 40 years, isn’t that something for your parents. I hope you celebrated well. Sadly, parents do get older. My own father has been well for his entire life, and was recently very ill. We never expected it. He was also so strong and well spoken before, but his illness took so much out of him. It is so sad to see the effects of age on the people you love so dearly. I hope both of your parents are enjoying better health.

        The ganges was indeed very dirty. One of the women I was travelling with chose to drink from the water and got very sick. It was minutes after we saw a human skull floating on the skin of ash floating in the river. She did not get better until she saw a doctor who gave her medicine. Despite this, it was culturally very colourful, and a place I will never forget.

        People everywhere get offended, no matter what your opinion. It is sometimes too difficult not to offend. Your opinion matters. If you offend people along the way, then do not be too perturbed. Everyone has a right to their point of view and their own beliefs.

        I love that you have had adventures on public transport. The trains certainly are an adventure, as are the train stations. I was waiting for a train once in India and an enormous crowd gathered before me. They just stood facing me, and watched, some of them taking pictures. I was told later that this was due to my extremely white colouring and very blonde hair. Apparently a lot of people in India have never seen anyone of my origin before. It was a curious adventure of it’s own, and slightly unnerving 😆 perhaps I should dye my hair black before I next go to India, although, I think the blonde eyebrows my give away the game!

        Dengue sounds like an awful disease. My friend even suffers now from problems after contracting it. I do hope a cure is found. Mosquitoes must be the world’s greatest killer. Be careful out there!

        Liked by 1 person

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