Madam let me tell you one thing |Madam let me tell you one thing

It was all so incredibly clean

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madam - pavement failI’m very excited about soon being near actual real quality pavements again on a daily basis.

I realise I’ve mentioned this pavement thing a lot – but it kept coming up over and over again when I was telling people I was leaving India.

There I’d be waxing lyrical about how all the ace things things I could do, and I’d list them – because I am that interesting – and right there, near the top was: I’d be able to walk daily. On pavements. Without fear of falling in a drain.

‘Do you mean an open sewer when you say drain?’ asked a Canadian chum.

Er, yes…
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Signage Sunday: No outside food

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Madam Signage Sunday no outside foodThis took me a while to get used to.

You see it everywhere in India.

No outside food.

At first it made me wonder if there was inside food. Or if outside food was food from a rubbish bin.

But obviously, you gentle reader, are quicker than I am. And are aware that it means food not bought on the premiss. You can’t bring your own food, but only eat what the restaurant provides.
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Dinosaurs on the lawn

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Madam dinosaurs on the lawnI’m currently in Costa Rica

So, as many of you know, I’m not currently living in India. As of two weeks ago, I emigrated.

Not immigrated anywhere else – as I’ve not actually landed anywhere in particular yet. But I did the leaving India part: I now officially have no home.

I’ve not written about it much yet, as I’m still
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Signage Sunday: Use me

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Madam Signage Sunday use meYou see this legend on almost all litter bins in India.

Use me.

Obviously it’s a simple request. Use the rubbish bin.

Fair enough.

But it does have a lot of emotional baggage with it. Whenever I see it, I can’t help feeling it has a plaintive rather submissive edge to it.

Particularly when combined with the fact that a lot of trash receptacles in India are actually shaped like giant kangaroos (I kid you not).
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Things I won’t miss: the noise

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Madam nice neighbourhood but noisySecond in a series of things I won’t miss about India.

India is noisy.

Very noisy – there are dogs, and cars and temple festivals ALL the time. People live in noisy joint family houses and seem to not even hear the sound of each other shouting.

Unfortunate that, as I could. My god, I could hear everything.
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Signage Sunday: Hard to gauge a language

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Madam Signage Sunday all languageI like this sign particularly.

Languages being hard to gauge at the best of times.

Spelling even more so.

The fact it’s a book store, it’s on about language… the fact it’s spelt wrongly.

So much to enjoy in just those two transposed letters.

In fact, I’ll just leave this here and let you absorb the joy of it all. No point getting high faultin’ about something so simply enjoyable.
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Things I won’t miss: being stared at all the time

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Liz blending in with the localsFirst in a series of things I will not miss about India.

In Kerala the stare is benign. Soft even, and if you catch someone’s eye, they almost always break into a massive smile.

Staring feels less benign in Bangalore.

It’s not out and out aggressive – but being from somewhere else means I’m something to look at: different hair, different skin colour, how I wear my clothes, even the fact I’m there at all. All reasons to have a good old look.

It gets old fairly quickly.

I like to walk quickly – which in itself is unusual in India (it’s hot, sensible people walk slowly). But I like to march along listening to loud music and thinking little, other than happy thoughts.
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Signage Sunday: Chocolate boll

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Madam Signage Sunday chocolate bollThis will come as no surprise to you that this particular tasty treat is from the same place that brought us last weeks ‘bugeete’ sign.

Still in Hampi, still incorrectly spelt. And still funny.

But that last might just be me.

The chocolate boll in question really was quite disgusting as it happens. I had one as my dessert and it tasted like nothing so much as a very vaguely chocolaty bit of burfi that had been rolled into a ball.

Burfi being a very sweet India sweet that has a distinctive taste – very sweet, but with
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We are not plants

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Madam Indian Blue skyAs you read this, I’ll be on a flight to London.

And that will be the end of my current time in India.

This is big stuff for me – when I came here, I thought I’d be in India for 7 years, instead it’s only been 3.

Then I thought I’d be moving to Sri Lanka. Then middle of last year Sydney nudged in, followed by NYC as a possibility. That would be lovely – I’m a sucker for the warm weather in New York (though as we know, I’m not a fan of the winters).

Instead, life took me in a totally different
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Signage Sunday: Bread can be hard to spell

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Madam Signage Sunday - bugeeteBaguette.

A French word, and filled full of unexpected letters if you don’t speak French.

Or any of the Romance languages, for that matter.

I do understand that it’s going to be a tricky one. But in Hampi, we saw endless variations on this… all of them wrong.
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