Friday, June 15, 2007

EAT. PRAY. PUKE.




I'll be reading a new piece this Saturday (6/16) at 6:30 at the Lions and Typers Festival at the Uptown Writer's Space (it's at Broadway and Lawrence, above the Green Mill).


Fellow yogini and big-time author Amy Krouse Rosenthal -- who arrived in Mysore last year on the day I left -- will be reading at 9:15PM. Many other accomplished writers (who probably finished their pieces weeks ago) are also on the roster.

Called "Eat. Pray. Puke," my piece is about my first trip to India, in 2002.


A teaser:



My bunk is slightly larger than a two-by-four – and just as hard. The man across the aisle is snoring louder than a Superbowl commercial, and a gray metal fan from 1940 is blowing cold air directly onto my neck.

David is on the other top bunk, snoring away. He discovered chai earlier today – he calls it “choy.” He hadn't had caffeine since the 1980s. But he likes the sweet, spicy tea so much he ordered a cup of it every time we pulled into a station and the hawkers boarded the train, yelling “chai-ummm.” Of course I had to keep up with him.



And now I lie here listening to the snoring and the crying and the whirring and the clacking of the train’s wheels and wonder, not for the first time, why I’m here. I never really WANTED to come to India to study yoga. Being sick in a so-called “third world country” is not my idea of fun. And I’m from the Midwest. We just don’t travel that much.
But I felt like I HAD to come......


***


When David and I finally get off the train in Mysore, we realize we are the tallest people in station – and also the palest. Porters in red jackets and moustaches swarm towards us, and fight to grab our bags. I clutch mine --- all four of them – and insist on carrying them myself. The porters look at me in my strange version of the traditional salwaar kameeze and shake their heads.

David, who has just two small bags, watches me struggle as I haul my heavy cases up and down two flights of stairs. He does not offer to help.

Like the battered train, the rundown station seems to have been left behind by the British -- and is swarming with people. David leads me to a quiet corner and piles his luggage on top of mine. Before I can say “I have to pee,” he’s gone – yelling over his shoulder that he’ll be “back in a minute.”

As soon as he leaves I attract a small crowd that can’t seem to get enough of me and my pile of bags.

I’m doubled over in pain and nearly crying when David returns 30 minutes later.

He’s carrying two cups of
choy.








Click here to see more pix from my last trip to India.






2 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing the pics; those were great.

    ReplyDelete
  2. dreyfuss' milk man12:20 AM

    I can't believe we don't have a recap of the evening's events yet! What's the delay?

    ReplyDelete