I 've always been very nervous before academic and job interviews but this one 's from my e-friend Rebecca so here goes.
Q 1.If you were to wake up tomorrow morning and be given a chance to do something completely different what would it be?
A: I would dress up quickly and go out for a 6 to 7 km. morning walk. I used to do that when I was more mobile, kept my weight down too.
Q 2.Are you an early or late riser...slow or pump up kind of person?
A: Actually I am an early riser, full of energy in the morning. Its after lunch that I slow down, but I 'm fine in the evening.
Q 3.Who, in the world drives you most crazy?
A: Crank callers...people who call at godforsaken times and won 't identify themselves properly. There are other types of people too but I 'd rather not say.
Q 4 With whom are you secretly in love?
A: Very easy to answer. Lots of Martians who don 't even know I exist.
Take Nicholas Cage for example.Perhaps he will read my blog and take note. Hope Floats (no he has not starred in it)
Q 5 War, poverty, disease, lack of education...which issue is of most importance to you in your patch on the globe?
A: I think its lack of education as it leads to poverty and disease in most cases. We are not at war but there is a lot of unrest, discontent, violence and anarchy in my country. Another problem is over population.
Thursday, 31 May 2007
I 've always been very nervous before academic and job interviews but this one 's from my e-friend Rebecca so here goes.
Mama, Aunt Sybil and I needed hair cuts so we called our door to door barber over. He did the job for a fraction of what we would have to pay at the beauty parlour.When my sisters and niece were here last summer they went to a swanky salon and paid Rs 250 for a haircut. I tipped the barber just Rs 25 for all of us. I 'll put the pictures out once I 'm done with the film.
There was a time I could afford the stylish salon, but now I can 't so what 's the big deal.Paul says be content in whatsoever circumstance you 're in...whether it be plenty or little.Hurray!
BEAT THE HEAT Part 2
We have other homemade concoctions to keep cool in the summer.There 's a mango drink called panna. You wash and boil green mangoes, with the skin on. After they are soft. Cool them. Discard the skin and seed and put the soft flesh in a pan, add a little water , sugar according to your taste, roasted cumin powder, little salt and a few mint leaves and simmer for a while . Make sure the mango pulp is well blended with the water. The liquid should be of a thin consistency.Strain the drink. Cool and chill. Serve with ice. Its really refreshing and energizing. Try it people. Its a hit here.If you can 't get cumin powder don 't worry you can leave that out.Try Indian shops.
The other drink is called sattu. (Hope I 'm not boring you) Comes from the Hindi word saat which means seven. Its a drink made from the powder of 7 grains. You take equal amounts of wheat,barley,millet,oats (cereal),chickpeas,corn and soy beans and grind them in a heavy duty food processor.We get the sattu powder ready made in the shops so we don 't have to grind it. In the West the Indian shops might have it.
If you want to have it as a breakfast dish, you can mix the sattu with milk or water ,the consistency should be thick. Add chopped fruit and dry fruit of your choice and honey or sugar and dig in. You can chill it too.I 'd like a little lemon juice with it.
Sattu can be had like a sherbet. Just add enough water , sugar or honey and I 'd put in lemon juice for added flavor chill, top with ice cubes and serve.
Its good for health too and they give it to nursing infants.Later on I 'll tell you about lassi, a cool drink made with plain yogurt.
Today the electricity is playing hide and seek. In the past 3 hours we 've had 4 or 5 outages. Very frustrating as I have to shut down the system and restart it each time. Flintstones where are you?
They are airing the Indian version of "The biggest Loser" show on one of our channels.There are 2 Christian heavy weights on it. One is a professed atheist and the other Robin Solomon is a born again believer.
They had the Indian version of Big brother too, which I found rather distasteful most of the time, specially when people got into each other 's faces and under their skin.They were the worst examples of humanity according to me and I think children and teens ( anyone of an impressionable age) should not be allowed to watch it.My mama has great sympathy for a disgusting cabaret dancer called an item girl in
India. I feel she is the lowest form of human life. Look what the show did to my nice mama!
Tuesday, 29 May 2007
Working under the blazing sun is hazardous for the man working on our church building.A lot of work is done manually, only the big construction companies have machines.Our worker sifted sand by hand and now he has to carry it to the church roof for the mason. All this is heavy tedious work, as he climbs up and down a bamboo ladder.
This afternoon he suddenly felt ill and dehydrated. I quickly made him a drink of sugar and salt WHO recommended ORS or oral re hydration solution.He felt better after taking that and resting and was back to work again.They cannot stop working in bad weather because work means food.
Posted by Amrita at Tuesday, May 29, 2007
We had a lovely church service on Sunday evening in our living room. Mr. Jacob, a village preacher and his wife came. He shared how his suburban/village church is growing.They meet in a school building leased free of cost by a Hindu man.People of deprived and poor social backgrounds come to the church not expecting any financial help.A young mother who was suffering from cancer died recently and her last wish was to be given a Christian funeral.
We all shared our blessings and prayer requests and Mr. Jacob preached from the book of Acts.After service I served orange Cool Aid and rice poppadoms.
Later on Mama and I watched Pentecost Global day of prayer coverage on God TV.The live broadcast from London 's East end Stadium was a real blessing. I loved the part where people of various nationalities prayed in their native languages. I recognized 2 spoken in India. ..Urdu and Tamil. An Asian band sang a lovely praise song in Hindi.
I went to the district court on Monday. Everything went well by God 's grace. We filed our reply to our rival 's evidence and got July 30th as our next hearing date. Thank you for praying for us. God protected me from the blazing sun, I paid the rickshaw drivers extra as I felt so bad for them having to work in the heat.
During the months of May and June and very hot wind called the loo blows all over the gangetic plains of North India ( its the antithesis of the blizzard) that causes a lot of heat strokes and deaths. In the developed nations people have means to protect themselves from harsh weather conditions whereas in the less developed countries people struggle against the vagaries of nature.
Saturday, 26 May 2007
My neice Mahima sitting on a rickshaw with Sheeba.Mims goes to High School in Bathhurst, New Brunswick, Canada.She came to India last summer with her mom and brother for a holiday.There is a rickshaw driver, but he is not in the picture.
Its very hot here and Mom tried to cool off by applying a simple henna paste on her head and the soles of her feet.I have taken pictures...will take time to get them ready.
Pray for Monday May 28th.I have to go to court.We will ask the judge to give us some time to get ready. In any case the court will close for a month during June for summer vacation. Pray for Judge Rai (as in rye).
Pray that I may be protected from the intense heat, as I step out. I will take a rickshaw and carry water with me. People put an onion in their pockets to protect them from the heat. Don 't know how scientific that is but it works, and I have not tried it. The Lord is the strength of my life, as the Word says.
We are having church in the evening. Pas. S is on vacation and the visiting preacher is available in the evening.We will meet in our living room as we have a battery operated generator which the church does not have.
Seems everyone is going on a vacation so to keep up with that I am re-reading Erma Bombeck 's book - Its time to go home when you start to look like the photograph on your passport. Its really funny. I last time i went on a holiday was with my American friend Elsie for 3 days in the Himalayas in Nov. 2000.
Thursday, 24 May 2007
Pastor Shaylendra.daughter Milka and wife Soonila
Nearly 20 years ago Shay was turned out of his home and village when he accepted Christ. He belongs to a family of Hindu Brahmin priests, considered to be the highest caste in India.
His father owns a lot of agricultural land. When Shay was being evicted from the ancestral home the whole village gathered in the front yard singing and rejoicing and beating celebration drums. They were pleased to see a Christian humiliated.
Shay was not allowed to take his belongings and his own hard earned money too.When his father asked him to strip off the clothes he was waring, Shay went to his room and started weeping. His brother in law came to him and gave him his clothes.
Shay passed through a lot of hardships and challenges. He studied in the Allahabad Bible Seminary which had Dr. Wesley Dewell (author) as one of its founders.Now he is the coordinator of the dept. of correspondence theology courses and pastor of our church.
His first wife died after child birth and he remarried two and half years ago. He invited his family with whom he had no contact for 17 years.His father and younger brother came and were very impressed by the Christian atmosphere. Communication lines started to open.His Dad and brother visited him in Allahabad and dad gave him some money to buy a motorcycle.
Two days ago Shay got a phone call from his dad saying that now they have 6 or 7 Christian families in their village and a small church too. Dad goes to the Christian meetings sometimes and would like Shay to come and preach there.What a reason to rejoice! The people who rejected Christ are now opening up. Glory be to God.
I went to see the lawyers with Shay yesterday. Found out that our opponents have submitted old evidence which has been rejected by the state court. They don 't have a chance. They are doing this to harass us knowing my father has gone.They think his daughter is too puny to handle the case. I stand in the Lord 's strength and we are confident of victory.Sometimes I get anxious and frightened but the Lord boosts my spirit. I will go to court on May 28th. We will ask the judge for more time as we have to get some documents from the state court and govt. offices.Please pray for this.
I have managed to pay the construction worker 's last bill, but he wants more for the on going work. We are asking the Lord for help. He is Jehovah Jireh.
Tuesday, 22 May 2007
My e friends Becky http://www.mrswolfe.blogspot.com/ John Cowart of www.cowart.info/blog/ have tagged me for a meme of 8 things about myself. I 'll do that and tag some of my friends. If you are on my list and have the time to play this game, please do so and tag your friends to do the same.
8 things about myself
1. When I was about 5 years old my parents took me with them for shopping and I saw 2 cloaked and veiled Muslim women and followed them into a restaurant (unknown to my folks).My parents started searching for me frantically. They found me in there crying my heart out and Muslim ladies trying to pacify me with ice cream.
2.When I was in Grade One I wrote a story about the Apollo spacecraft landing on the moon and won the first prize in the elementary section
3.I accepted Christ when I was 12 years old at a tent meeting in which one of Billy Graham 's Indian associate evangelists was speaking.
4.I started taking guitar lesson in Grade 8.When the teacher discovered I was a good student he used to ask me to teach the class and take a break.
5.I advertised in a penpal magazine when I was in High School and received hundreds of letters in response.I picked out a few to reply to and instead of burning the rest I threw them in a roadside garbage bin. It was a very hot and windy day and soon the wind blew my letters all over the street.My aunt who was returning home from work saw the mess with my name on it. She came home and gave me a scolding and sent the house help out to gather all the letters (12 baskets full LOL ) and burn them.My aunt saved me otherwise I would have been the most famous teenager in town.
6.I wish I could be a journalist, owner of a bookshop, psychiatrist/counsellor , vet or event manager.
7.Some animals I want to have as pets are...sheep,duck and meerkat.
8.When Presidents Carter and Reagan were elected I wrote to congratulate them and received replies from the White House.
The friends I've tagged are
Thank you friends.
Posted by Amrita at Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Since the time of both sets of my grandparents we 've had the family tradition of feeding people, whoever came to the house and we are carrying it on. Visiting Christian friends, students (we 've had a ministry like the Inter Varsity Fellowship), relatives ,poor people, nobody can return hungry. We consider this our ministry and service.
I like cooking specially for others.These days Pas. S 's wife and daughter are away, so every evening I pack a tiffin (the British would know this term) for him. Just simple food...a vegetable stir fry with chapatis. i cooked jackfruit, bottle gourd,cottage cheese with chick peas and green peppers, ladyfinger, beans with potatoes. For Sunday lunch I sent him fried river fish fillets with rice and Dal, bread and yogurt. He is leaving on the 24th May so I will pack bread and potatoes for his train journey.
Here is a picture of our church family, visitors and non Christian friends enjoying a party after Christmas service on our porch.
New Year 's church cookout. Pas. S is cooking on a wood fire .
I hope the electricity and voltage problems won 't get in the way of my blogging.
This is just an extra bit . All you dog owners, my Sheeba is suffering from false pregnancy and she is lactating! Don 't know what to do.
Monday, 21 May 2007
I tried so hard to write this post.
Saturday, 19 May 2007
Its been very hot since the last 2 days and I 've caught the bug from somewhere. So I 'm down with fever, tummy and body ache and cough. I am allergic to fluctuating temperature. I 've got this rare syndrome (rare makes me feel important-I wouldn 't go in the more common ones) which has affected my sight, hearing, sinuses, auto immune system (arthritis) etc.The Lord has given me tremendous healing and grace. There was a time I had forgotten how to walk.
I am reading a devotional called 'Strong at the broken Places ' by Selwyn Hughes.He writes about 'using ' our problems and trials for the glory of God.One thing I have learnt to discard in my life is self pity.That is the greatest enemy of our souls.
Friday, 18 May 2007
Hi I 'm back. Today when I started to open my account I found my keyboard was not working. So I was rendered wordless.Took it to the cyber shop in the evening and it worked perfectly well there. It was playing a game with me it seems. I got it connected again and I 'm back in business.On the way back I saw a 50% off sign outside a shopping MAUL . I call them MAULS as they can maul your pocketbook if you are not careful LOL.I watch out for bargain offers.The girls try to sell me cosmetics but I move on saying I 'm allergic to them.I bought some veggies, mustard oil for cooking, melons and mosquito repellent.
Please pray for pastor Shaylendra and me. We are going to see our lawyers tomorrow (Sat. evening) to get some documents which will support our case.Those documents are pretty old, hope they still have them in their files.
On Thursday night Mama and I watched Gothika on Star Movies. I usually don 't watch spooky flicks but saw this one because of Halle Berry.If the criminal justice dept. worked like that in real life them all murderers would be caught...the victim 's ghost helped. Anyway I like Halle, except in the Flintstones...that role did n 't suit her.
Thursday, 17 May 2007
Dear friends, We are having innumerable electricity cuts these days. I 'm having difficulty operating my computer. I have to juggle my house chores,take care of my aging Mama and aunt,and Sheeba, cook, entertain visitors,manage church affairs and shop (I don 't drive so I either walk or take a rickshaw} Today is slightly cloudy, so I 'll walk to the Post Office to post some letters which I have been putting off due to the heat. I really wish I could drive or have someone drive me
I have so many things to share with you my friends but at times my hands are tied.I 'll do my best.
My henna job turned out good.Wish I could do this for some of you who would be interested. it works well on dark hair.In India there are scores of chemical hair colors and treatments available (eg. Revlon, L 'Oreal , Garnier etc.) and also herbal ones. Sometimes I do the chem. Actually I don 't have very many grey hair, but it gives you a nice feeling. The herbal products are so much better. We also have salons of all kinds, from the swish internationals to the more homegrown ones. But I am 'Quaker minded '. Why pay for something I can do at home.
Tuesday, 15 May 2007
My hair needs conditioning and colouring so I have prepared henna paste and will apply it to my hair tomorrow morning.
For this you need to buy a packet of henna powder , it has various herbs mixed in it already. There are a variety of brands available. To start off you boil some tea leaves and coffee ( I add powdered tobacco) in water and cool it.Then add the henna powder, white of an egg and some lemon juice to the mixture and stir it well. It should make a thick gooey paste.Leave it overnight to mature. For extra effect people put this mix in an iron pot. I had an iron frying pan for this purpose but gave it away so I 'm using a steel bowl.
The next day you can apply this paste to your hair with a brush ( it stains the hands) just like hair colour and leave it on for three hours at least.The minimum time should be one hour.
After that rinse off the henna. Do not shampoo.Some women oil their hair to keep it soft, like I do. You can shampoo your hair on the second day.
So how about it ladies are you ready for the plunge?
My friend John Cowart www.cowart.info/blog/ has tagged me for a meme and I will comply, but i don 't know how to add links to my posts.You people out there are so clever at all this .Can someone tell me how to add links.
Some days I may not be able to blog due to electricity cuts, my battery last only for 5 minutes.Its very frustrating.
The Tupperware I own is very old. It was brought in by missionaries who came to India more than forty years ago. Many of them have died or are living in retirement. We remember their friendship and faithful service.Times of music, prayer and fellowship.
Some of the Tupperware is cracked, discoloured and the lids don 't fit properly. I don 't have the heart to throw it away.I 'm holding on to my missionary Tupperware memories. We have a number of missionary furniture and articles in our house, my guitar too.
I have posted a picture of a Bible study in our living room. The mirror, bamboo book shelf, lamp and the red sofa on which the little girl is sitting ,we bought from our Canadian friends.
I don 't have a digital camera (mine is the old wind up one) otherwise I would have posted more pictures of my purchases.
So all of you good people out there who support missionaries be aware of what a long way your gifts go. God bless you all.
Posted by Amrita at Tuesday, May 15, 2007
Monday, 14 May 2007
Posted by Amrita at Monday, May 14, 2007
Thursday, 10 May 2007
Wednesday, 9 May 2007
On April 29th two non govt.news channels showed Pastor Walter Massey of Jaipur (Rajasthan) being beaten up by Hindu fundamentalists. The persecutors were falsely accusing Walter of forcibly converting people to Christianity. The news channels were on the side of Christians and urged the govt. and police to take action against the criminals.As a result 5 people were arrested.
Pastor Shaylendra knows Walter Massey personally and says he is a very godly and prayerful man.He is a Hindu convert.
Yesterday another news channel showed two pastors being kicked and beaten and dragged through the streets in Kolapur (Maharashtra state).
The Hindu right-wingers were accusing them of baptizing people forcibly.The media strongly supported the pastors and condemned the brutality of the Hindu extremists. As a result 17 people were arrested.
In India everyday there are several cases of Christians being harassed and persecuted for the sake of Christ.The work of Christ is advancing at a good pace and the 'enemy ' is furious.
"Blessed are you when your commitment to God provokes persecution.The persecution drives you deeper into God 's kingdom" Matt 5 -The Message Bible.
India is a democracy and everybody has a right to choose and propagate their own religion, but the 'enemy ' hates that.
Monday, 7 May 2007
I went to court today and stood right next to our lawyer as he very forcefully pleaded our case. A rep. from our opponent 's side came and he wanted to know who I was , he knew my father.The judge fined them (Rs 200) for not presenting themselves in court on earlier occasions and very firmly told them to submit their proof papers today. Our next hearing is on May 28th.We were rather disappointed that our case was not wrapped up today, there are all sorts of legal loopholes in our judicial system as anywhere in the world. But at least they were penalized.
On May 28th I will have to go to court alone as Pastor Shaylendra will be away on vacation.
We are disappointed but not discouraged.
Later on in the evening our cleaning helper A-shok was sweeping under our window cooler (I tried to describe it in an earlier post Apr.22nd ) and nearly got electrocuted as the wiring in the cooler was faulty and we didn 't know it.
If the Lord had not protected him (he believes in Jesus) he would have instantly died. We all were in such shock and badly shaken up. I gave him money and sent him to a doctor. He is feeling better now and needs to rest.God 's protection is round about us Ps 91
I tremble and feel faint when I think what would have happened if A-shok had lost his life. How gracious God is.
Sunday, 6 May 2007
Monday May 7th is a crucial day for us as Pastor S and I will go to the district court for the church land grabbing case hearing. The judge has given our opponents one last chance to present their proof. We know they have no proof by which they can claim our land. We have won several cases against them, still they find some legal pretense to harass us.
The victory is ours we know and we thanking God for it in advance.Its been a long nearly 25 year old battle. My father died before seeing the end. I took over his mantle. Please pray for us.Friends in N America note that we are 12 hrs. ahead of you, so it will be your Sunday evening.
Early Sunday morning 3am. we had a heavy rainstorm with thunder and lightening. Cooled down quite a bit. And I didn 't have to water the garden
Pastor Shaylendra shared how blessed he has been since he joined our church 2 years ago. He means of transport had been a bicycle and he had been wanting to buy a motorcycle. His father who had disowned him when he became a Christian and had no contact with him for the past 17 years sent him 2/3rds of the money to buy a bike.
Pastor S belongs to a Hindu family of royal priests, and his becoming a Christian brought great shame to the conservative Brahman family. He was turned out of the house without a stitch, they even took away his clothes, he borrowed clothes from his brother-in-law.
He struggled a lot, went to Bible College and joined Christian ministry.His wife died leaving an infant daughter, who had been living with her maternal grandparents until recently. Milka is 7 years old.Shaylendra re-married 2 yrs. back. They make a great couple and he has his daughter with him now.His estranged father and brother are communicating with him again. They visited him.Apart from pastoring our church, S is the assistant coordinator of the long distance Bible courses dept. at the Allahabad Bible Seminary, which is a reputed Bible College of Asia. That keeps him pretty busy.I will try to post a picture of their family in a later post.
Saturday, 5 May 2007
This my niece Mahima buying vegetables from our Christian vegetable man, last June in front of our house, Sheeba is at the door.Vegetable vendors go house to house with their produce on a cart.
I went to the market today and bought chicken, fish,and veggies - tomatoes, cucumbers, collards,parwal, bitter gourd and melons. Our garden is giving us okra, aubergine (few now) & snake gourd.Beans and spinach are not at the yielding stage. Tomatoes are ending.We harvested our onions and garlic.
I got a huge bunch of bananas. So I gave away lots and made stir fry, fritters and bread too. I have papayas and lemons our mangoes are green still.
Posted by Amrita at Saturday, May 05, 2007
This evening I got another donation of Rupees 2000 from friends for our church repair fund.The workman was expecting an installment yesterday but I was unable to oblige. Now I will give him his due.We still have a long way to go.We are walking by faith and not by sight.We are witnessing what George Mueller experienced.
Posted by Amrita at Saturday, May 05, 2007
Thursday, 3 May 2007
I have two sisters, I am the middle one. My Papa died 3 years ago at 75. he lived a Christian life and served the Lord well. My Mom a retired teacher will be 76 in June "07.
Both my sisters are Christians and their families too.
Older sister Anjali and husband Prem have two children Ashish (21) and Mahima (14) (pronounced Maheema). They live in New Brunswick, Canada where they migrated 5 years ago having lived in Nigeria for 17 yrs. Prem is a textile engineer and Anjali, a homemaker and sub. school teacher.In Nigeria she ran her own pre-school which was very popular amongst the ex-pats.
Younger sister, Namrita is a teacher and her husband Sengrak is a Commerce professor. They live in North East India close to the Bangladesh border (very far from here). they have 2 sons Mishael (10 and Rayguel (6).
I have another sister whom my parents rescued and adopted as a small kid. She was abandoned by her parents and was working as a domestic help with people who were not treating her well. Our tailor told us about her and my parents took her in. She grew up with us and became a part of our family.Her name is Sonia. She is married , has a 5 yr old son called Abner, who is like an unguided missile.Her husband Avinash is a computer programmer in the Lucknow University, where they live. Sonia is a SAHM. She is an excellent cook.
Let me add that most of my close relatives are dedicated Christians.Thought I 'd introduce everybody. I 'll be posting pictures. I 'm just having trouble operating my scanner. I 'm not very computer savvy you know.
Wednesday, 2 May 2007
These days because of election time we are getting a 24 hr. supply of electricity. Otherwise we have a 21 to 20 hr supply if there are no breakdowns.Friends in the West will be shocked to read this I know.
India is a huge populous country and power generation does not match up with the demand, specially in North India where I live. Everybody who can afford it keeps a battery run or gas (petrol) powered generator hooked up to their mains. We have a battery run one.
The rural areas are the worst hit. The farmers get enough to run their well pumps etc. There is very little domestic supply.People are going in for alternative means of generating electricity like solar units and waste recycling.
In India the east has met the west.You will see the rich man 's mansion and Lazarus lying at the gate.Cyber cities and illiteracy exist side by side.There are fashion designer competing with their western counterparts and people who don 't have enough clothes to hide their nakedness.luxury shopping malls and children scrounging around in the garbage looking for a morsel to eat.