Big Bed!

Someone in my family has a 6’6” tall boyfriend who does not fit in my bed because of the wooden footboard….

…so my parents put a box spring under the mattress AND replaced the mattress itself with one that was 3 inches taller.  Now that I can barely jump onto the bed, hopefully the Big Friendly Giant can now sleep over without jamming his legs!


Spending the day in Zurich…

…the Zurich AIRPORT that is!

Arrived from Mumbai to Zurich 6AM (Central European Time). After being the first people through airport security for the morning, my fellow Mumbai travelers and I had the whole terminal to ourselves!

I was quite touched by the “groovy” San Francisco shoutout in the terminal.  It was nice to have thoughts of home as I drifted off to sleep in the comfy Zurich airport chairs.  :)


Pachora (Day 1)

Arrived in Pachora (PA-chora) in the early morning Tuesday with Saurabh.  About 6 hours from Mumbai via train, Pachora is where most of Saurabh’s father’s family lives.  Before the actual wedding ceremony takes place (on Friday), a number of smaller things need to take place with each of the bride and the groom’s families.  We are staying at the house of one of Saurabh’s uncles, and everyone so far has been nothing but kind and generous.  (The only downside is that very few people here speak English..!)

The bed I stayed in.  So generous, I can’t even explain.DSCN4068

Amrita having mendhi done  on her hands!DSCN4078


They do these sand designs in front of the house every day!  There are of course more detail and color for special occasions!DSCN4085

1-day-old mendhi.  It gets a little darker the next day.DSCN4096

1-hour-old mendhi!DSCN4106


Saurabh’s mom, aka my Indian mom.  I think she is so pretty!DSCN4121

Rani’s momDSCN4129

The women all gathered in the side yard, singing and playing wedding-related games.  They were divided into teams based on the colored ribbons.DSCN4136

The auntie that I stayed with.  She was also a judge/score keeper for the games.  :)DSCN4141

A cow watching us.  Remember that cows are sacred in India (thus the term Holy Cow!), so they’re pretty much allowed to do what they want.DSCN4161

Saurabh’s mom and sister Yamini.  They match!DSCN4175

Saurabh matches too!
(Outfit #1 of seemingly hundreds…)



One of the teams of ladies dancing!DSCN4190c



Mamta and Amrita acting something out.
(Hope I got their names right!)DSCN4213

One of the aunties having a microphone shoved in front of her to sing, lol.DSCN4221

I think she has the best smile of the group!DSCN4222


Bollywood shotDSCN4251

Visiting Saurabh’s grandpa’s village (about 10 km away)DSCN4256





Saurabh’s uncle’s house, decorated for the wedding and festivities.  :)DSCN4264

The women singing and dancing around Saurabh.  Didn’t really understand what they were saying, but it was still a lot of fun!DSCN4284


Hot Dog!


Penny, setting fashion trends ‘round the world with her safety-vest-inspired quilted doggie jacket.
Knowing my mother, she may also be in-training to sport some cheesy holiday costumes for the upcoming year as well.



My dad opting to let Princess Penny continue using his feet as her royal pillow, as my parents have fun listening to her doggie-snores.


Paraty—Day 2

Here are some more pictures from Paraty.

You’d think that such a small town wouldn’t need more than say… 5 churches…. Guess I was wrong!





We went down to the docks to catch a schooner (escuna) to tour the neighboring beaches and islands.  These boats we passed along the way were a bit smaller, but so cute and colorful!



Some guy who caught a fish!



Finally made it to our boat at the end of the dock.  Here’s the lower deck.  There was a cute guy playing acoustic guitar, while people just lay out.  Paradise, eh?


Hannah and I managed to steal a spot on the top deck so we could enjoy the beautiful sunlight and view of the islands!


Beach stop #1.  “Squid Beach”


Look at these blue waters!  We had the choice to either descend via ladder, or simply jump off the boat.  Sorry to say, I chose the more boring option. 

We also had the option to use a “noodle” in the water, or to swim on our own.  Those who know me well, will be proud to know that I swam to shore and back on my own for one of the stops!  (I was a bit lazy the other times….)


Beach #3… I think.  They were all pretty, and blend into each other haha.  I think this was the one where someone lent us their mask to look underwater at the fish.


Hannah looking cute.


Hannah took a picture of this random guy’s tattoo, to add to the “stupid tattoos” collection.  We could make an entire blog dedicated to the topic, based on my 3 weeks in Brazil.


As our schooner was the last to return to dock, there wasn’t much space for us between the other boats.  I truly thought we would just have to jump onto another boat to get to land.  Of course… that was me being pessimistic, and American. 

Tem jeito…” as the Brazilians would put it.
There always seems to be a way….


This is how close we were to the boats on each side. 
Glad those tires were put to good use!


After that fun ordeal, we wandered through town.  After almost giving up, we found a little place that had all the food we were looking for!  Homemade pizza, aipim frito, and juices!  Well… couldn’t find pesto pasta, but this was a great second.  And for half the price as the other options!


While we were eating, there was a 10-minute downpour, and we watched as people ran into the church across the street.  (Act of God?  just kidding…)


After the rain died down, we wandered through the historical center looking for alcohol.  Found something better – tapioca!  It’s a chewy pancake made with tapioca flour, filled with cheese and sweet fruit goodness.


We then discovered some kind of music event going on in the main plaza.  Live music, laser light show, young kids, and alcohol!




Hannah and I sat down to listen to the music, people-watch, and share a very strong passionfruit caipirinha.

We took many pictures (per true Brazilian fashion) of ourselves, but could never really get a picture with both of our eyes open through the flash.

Speaking of fashion, check out the lady’s outfit in the background.  There’s the real gem of this picture.  Love it!


We made it back to the hostel to sleep, just as everyone else was gearing up to go out to the party haha.  I guess that makes us old…

Anyway, I had a great time in Paraty.  It was a great, quaint town, and I wouldn’t mind taking a short relaxing trip back some day in the future.