Ms. Rita Chandraswamy is a junior at Cornell as pre-med major. She is an Indian-American and is right now at her ancestor's home in Delhi (India) for Christmas break. She is a pretty, petite girl but sometimes whines more than the situation demands - deep down she is quite empathic and a sweetheart. Also, she has love-hate relationship with India that gets more pronounced every 2 years when she visits India to be with her extended family and grandparents. She is little freaked out right now. She is little culture-shocked, jet-jagged, and misses her WASP (White Anglo-Saxon Protestant) boyfriend Harry. Harry is a jock, Physical Ed major at Ithaca College. They say he is quite a sensitive guy and promises to accompany her to India next time. Deep down, there is also a lingering doubt that they may break-up and the separation due to India trip might act as a catalyst - that is adding to her anxiety of being in India. Nevertheless, this is has not damped her shopping spree in different malls in Delhi and passion for buying different sarees. A brief conversation between her and her grandmother (दादि मा):
Delhi, December 31, 2005 , 8:00 PM
दादि मा: बैठि, य खा लो । (Grandmother: Daughter, Eat this.)
Rita: Man, India is too hot, the food is too hot, too dirty. Do I have to wash my hair everyday? Next time, I come here, you better have a western-style toilet seat. Harry will freak out. Tonight, I am going to Hotel Siddhartha for New Year's party so I need to get ready. Granny, later. Dadi Ma, don't worry.
दादि मा: हा, अब खा लो । (Grandmother: Yes, Now please eat this.)
Still, the real cause for anxiety is not heat, spice, toilet - it is that damn Harry. What is he doing on New Year's Eve?
Note: The characters speak in their own language. The English translation is within parenthesis when used Hindi . This is a very sophomoric maiden effort by me in bilingual writing. The Hindi is still shaky with spellings. Hopefully, my literary efforts will get more sophisticated with time.