Saturday, January 2, 2010

India: our stay at redwood cottage

We arrived in India on the seventeenth and took a train north on the eighteenth. We spent a week at Redwood Cottage, Nate and Joie's home in India. The restful days were wonderful and I enjoyed seeing my brother as a husband and pappa, and I was glad to get to know Joie better. The cousins were fun to watch: at first, circling around each other and then growing comfortable enough to play together (though Claire is a little young yet to always appreciate all the games Annie had in mind). Below are a few (out of order) pictures from that week.

Christmas day. We walked up the mountain to a potluck dinner with other Woodstock teachers. Claire enjoyed all of our outdoor time, chilly or not.
Walking with Papa.
The cousins! Last time we saw Will and Annie, they were two-and-a-half and just seven or eight months old. I really appreciated the chance to see who they are now; near the end of our visit, I began thinking about who they might be in ten or twenty years and what stories we might tell from this visit in India.
Nate and Joie have talked about India being a difficult place to live and I saw that in much of the daily work. Here I am making Russian teacakes (or pecan sandies or snowball cookies or Mexican wedding cakes), stirring the dough by hand. When I burned out my first mixer in Kuwait, I froze: how would I bake anything!? I thought about that silliness while making Christmas cookies with Joie. I spent the week being very impressed by all that Joie must do to bring food to the table since there is nothing simple or easy about preparing meals from scratch with food you carry on your back from the bazaar.
Joanna sent Joie little tart tins and a recipe for my Great-Grandma's sandbackels. We had no idea just how many cookies a single batch would make. Joie soon realized that I should receive my own Christmas present from Jo and Ron early: another set of tins. We baked and baked...and baked. They were delicious. All four hundred and seventy-two (ha ha).
My brother cooks! I didn't know this. He began cooking during a semester in England where he and a friend learned how to make sesame chicken and stew. For us, he made an amazing orange chicken with sauce, served over rice.
Joie is a very musical person, playing guitar and piano and singing. I think Claire enjoyed that very much.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

that looks fun! All of it.
I wish I was there!
Auntie M