October 11, 2001 GMT
North India

Entry into India is a bit of a gas. They are a bit wary of foreigners since a German couple drove a whole van of rifles over the border for the Kashmiri rebels: “open please”. The elderly customs officer can’t make sense of my girlfriend’s tampon collection. But he is sure that they are suspicious. He holds one up. I make some nodding and smirking type moves to let him know the general nature of the items. “Women’s things” I say. It doesn’t help. So I search the English vocabulary for a more precise description. But, my language is not too forthcoming on below waist matters.

So it’s going to have to be gestures. What others make of the pantomime, I don’t know. It is kind of tricky to do the motions of putting things up your crotch in public. But I do my best. Not a bad rendition I reckon. I’m wondering about my Oscar nomination, but he is not convinced. Just more perplexed. Okay gloves off—I get all graphic. He pushes his chin up, breathes and says “not possible sir” and marches away. Off the hook.

Oh no. He returned with all his colleagues. A dozen. So it was time for a re-run of my finest performance. They are a bit more in the mood for laughter, so it turns out okay. They still didn’t believe me, but have no way to argue with something so obviously ludicrously untrue.

McLoudganj is the home of the Dalai Lama. Lots of Tibetans, Buddhists, and western tourists having a look. There are lots of western food options and India is looking reassuring familiar after the stay in Pakistan. The third world was getting to me. As was daal and mutton curry for every meal. Call ‘round the DL house but he is unavailable: I am told he can’t be disturbed while he is watching Santa Barbara, the fourth series where Kelly leaves Scott.

The guy on the computer next to me has full Buddhist robes and sandals, tattoos and a short mohican. I see over he has Punkmonk157 before his @. That means there are another 156 of them out there.

Posted by at October 11, 2001 11:32 PM GMT
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