Anoor is at the field with his friends and we drive back to his house together. I park the bike out front and we climb over a mountain of rubbish before entering his front door. I enter to find his sister and his father sitting in the living room watching T.V. Everybody warmly welcomes me into their home. Even though I can’t understand everything that’s being said I can tell the family are excited just by the tone of their voices. Before long a freshly made rice dish is served and we share conversation about the food, life of the family and my mission through India. I can’t help but find strangely similar priorities when it comes to the subject of family. Health, family unity, education, happiness & love being some of the first pillars they mention.
A very frail looking grandmother curiously shuffles into the room, then an uncle, and his older brother, and his uncles friend. Before long we almost have a small Indian fiesta happening in the living room. The men want to talk, the ladies appear to be content being in the room. Anoor sneakily wears my hat for most of the experience and I ask if it’s ok to take a photo. This is the photo.
Then the mother brings out what looks like a harmless leaf rolled up with a few black beans inside of it. They smile and say “this is good for digestion after your meal.”
I innocently thank her and sink my teeth into the green leafed sushi roll. Before I know it my mouth seizes up with a bitter, spicy and powerful taste of the unknown bean. My mouth goes completely purple with the colouring and my face turns itself inside out. The family burst out laughing, Anoor saying “Do you like it?”.
I swallow the rest of the toxic breathe freshener and say “it’s pretty strong”.
Anoor replies “yes, it will make you strong”.
I thank them all for the wonderful experience, shake their hands goodbye and head back towards the village to collect my things before meeting with Ananda at his festival later that afternoon.