We had a great low key New Years. Since Conrad and I had to work New Years Eve we didn’t want to make any big plans. Not to mention, our one year old isn’t much of a party girl after 8ish. So we got some Mexican food and went home to watch a couple of movies.
We watched a pseudo Indian movie . It was in English mostly and took place in America, but it was about a Bengali family. It was Bollywood in the fact that it was NEVER ENDING! Dear lord, we had to watch three generations grow up before the movie concluded. I do love Bollywood movies, but they are LOOOOONNNNNG. In fact, Conrad and I get a huge kick out of movies that highlight Indian American mixed culture because it highlights some of the funny things we argue about.
I also love reading books about India. It helps explain the finer points of Indian Culture that my husband shrugs off with a “I don’t know WHY, Honey.” In fact, I’m not so sure men even see some of the finer points of their own culture. I’m convinced culture is established, maintained, and enforced solely by women.
One of my favorite books is called Mango Season. It’s about an Indian girl who came to the US to work after college and the four rules her Hyderabadi family gave her as she left to live in America:
1. Save money
2. Save money
3. Save money
4. Don’t marry an American
If you’ve ever known an Indian living in American, especially a single one, you know that they will live in small apartments, with little luxury, pay as little as they can for everything and love to hide tens of thousands of dollars in places like, under their mattress. My dad calls Indians the Jews of Asia. Now, when their families come over, things change. They buy nice real estate in good school districts and safe cars…that cold hard cash comes in handy at this point. Education and Safety are cornerstones of Indian Values.
The main character of the book comes home to India with the intention of telling her parents that she has an American Fiancée, which she had never mentioned before. But they have different plans. The trip is filled with “meetings” of potential spouses. It’s hilarious. I also learned new hindi words, like Mahkichoos (PRONOUNCED: Mah-Kee-Choos). This means so stingy that if a fly lands in your tea, you would kill the fly and suck the tea from the fly. There's your word for the day.