Saturday, 14 June 2014

My amazing new job.

More soon, just a quick check in as I wanted to share my good news.
Since emigrating I’ve been kinda bimbling around trying to find a place to work, I mean a place to really invest my time and energy in a way that feels right in my heart.
I mean, I’ve spent my whole adult life doing whatever work came my way. To continue in that direction after taking the leap of faith and moving here seemed a little silly.
This video is a few years old but wanted to show you who I’ll be working with from July: Eco Femme Video.
Not only do they make beautiful environmentally friendly cloth pads (with nappies and breast pads in the pipeline) stitched by local village women to provide them with livelihoods but they do extensive work to help empower and educate women here in India on menstruation. Watch the vid and you’ll see what stigma is attached to that perfectly natural monthly occurance through lack of education and communication.
Am so excited as it’s exactly what I hoped to do out here. Since using cloth nappies with my son, I've seen how good you can feel about making a small change and have been proudly using reusable sanitary products for a few years now. Disposable sanitary waste is bad news, full of plastic and harmful toxins and isn't going away.
It’s all come about due to following an inkling of an idea and just goes to show that sometimes it’s good to 'find your dream and boldly go for it' (wise words from my dear uncle) 
More info on the inititative available here on their website: Eco Femme.
Laura xx

Friday, 6 June 2014

Our day trip - 27th may

Hi, I wanted to write about our day trip to Vandalur Zoo and Dizzee world. We were approached by the mother of a girl in K's class aboiut taking a minibus up the coast near Chennai for a day trip. It sounded like fun and the sort of thing you should do at least once during the summer holidays so we said yes.

We went on the 27th May - a Tuesday - in the hope to avoid the weekend rush. The minibus picked us up outside our community at 8am where we joined the other 3 families, a Russian family with 3 kids (one girl in K's class), an Indian lady and her daughter (also in K's class) and an Italian couple and their son.
Bus view:

At one of the toll gates along the way (I love the painted trucks):

It was quite a long journey to get to the zoo, especially including a stop for coffee and the loo but finally we arrived there at around midday (quite a hot time of day to be out and about but nevermind).

First stop was the fish shaped aquarium, better from the outside. it contained mostly common aquarium fish and empty tanks...

Then we saw an enclosure full of albino peacocks - beautiful!

One thing I love about living here are the funny signs, misspellings etc. 'IT IS OFFENCE!!' tickled me...

The zoo is actually rather big and the little tour buses were fully booked so we hired bicycles to get about on (for the equivalent of 20p)

Another of my favourite signs, there wasn't even a noticable heap of leaf litter. :)

A white tiger having a midday snooze...

A newly arrived collection of Wild Ass (yep, I am quite immature *snigger*)

K and his monkey friend

Zoo-ed out in the midday heat

The zoo was ok, the price was good, 50p for me and C each and 20p for K but most animals were hidden away and without the uncomfortable bicycles we'd have had a long walk. Anyway, onwards we went towards Chennai and Dizzee World...

Shot from the bus

Another view of 'real' India. The littering here is immense, makes me sad but after all, India is a country of extremes.

Finally arrived at Dizzee World at around 3pm *everyone in the bus cheers*

We had no idea what to expect, one thing I've learned from spending time here is to never presume to know what something will be like, be it food on a menu or a tourist destination.

But it was surprisingly clean and functional...well...except the pool areas...
They were over crowded and dirty. Many people, especially the women, go in fully dressed which is very unhygienic. C went up to go down the water slide to find a human poo on the stairs. Needless to say we stayed in long enough to cool down after our sweaty morning and made a hasty retreat. I think I've been spoilt with the pools local to us in AV. Clean, rarely busy and certainly no poo!
C and K on a ride

We didn't have time for the rollercoaster, maybe next time...

A funny looking caterpillar ride

K's favourite ride, he was giggling and spinning in circles for most of it.

Spot the boy...

Enjoying a motorbike ride

Me and K posing with a Triceratops, naturally.

Just before leaving.

All in all, we had a great day out. The zoo wasn't so great, maybe the midday heat contributed to that but Dizzee World was fun, not just for K but for us grown ups too. It was a very long day, we left at 8am and were home by 9.30pm. So tired the next day at work!
Anyway, must close now, tomorrow me and C are off back up the cost to Mahaballipuram for the night to celebrate our 2 year wedding anniversary. Not had a night to ourselves since Jan so looking forward to that.
Will be back soon as have some exciting news regarding my new job starting in July and other bits and pieces besides.
Sending love from hot and sweaty India.