Bought 22 bananas today, and gave them all out to kids (aged 1-10) on the street. Again, this is within a 2 block radius of my guest-house. Total cost = half a dollar. I'll need to step things up, and start spending a bit more. I can easily afford at least a few bucks a day to help poor people. However, given the drug/substance abuse I've seen by the adults, giving cash or anything that can easily be sold is a bad idea.
Maybe I'll start giving out rice (uncooked) to the parents...
This has to be better than giving money to the Red Cross - who probably suck up 50% of it in admin costs. This is direct aid.
In other matters...
My swiss army knife has been getting a fair amount of use, and is now quite awfully dull. Took it to a knife sharpener a few doors down from my hotel. Essentially, there were two guys working there. One, whose sole job is to turn a very large wheel all day long (think dante's inferno, only without the republicans) - this large wheel is attached by a long bit of rope to a grinding machine, which the other guy squats in front of, and grinds whatever he's told to.
I sat down with a bunch of gents waiting to have their scissors and knives sharpened... The large-wheel-sharpener was cool enough that I decided to take a photo. Suddenly, everyone becomes very intersted in the view-finder, which managed to capture the sparks as they were shooting off of the scissors. I made some friends there.
In casual conversation with the gents, they asked my age, and said I looked about 25. It seems that shaving has done me some good, as people were saying I was 35 last week. Good god.
I've finally got the Indian Head Nod down. It took me a while, and even after I had been told about it, I still didn't quite grasp it at the root level.
At least here in the south, when Indians mean yes, they nod their head left-to-right. It's not the same as a no in the west (which is more of a shaking left to right), as in this case, the head rocks so that the person's eyes are always looking forward. In any case, for a while, it was very confusing when someone replied to a question with the head-nod - as I always thought they were saying no.
I'm already catching myself doing it - it's strange... but somewhat addictive.
Off to Cochin tonight. I catch a train at 9:15PM, in the Luxury 2nd tier A/C sleeper compartment. I think the journey is 600+ KM, and will take about 12 hours.
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