Posts Tagged ‘Lima’

Letter From New York 03 22 15 Off to India…

March 22, 2015

The ice on the Hudson is breaking up more every day. It is one of the few signs of spring as winter keeps its claws in the Northeast. It made it hard to decide what to wear today as I was leaving the cottage to go to the train, one the first of steps in the long journey to India.

My flight leaves at 10:30 tonight and arrives in London at 9:30 in the morning where friends will meet me, take me to brunch, and I’ll visit with them until it is time to get back to the airport and continue the journey to Delhi.

As Nick, who works with me on weekends, took me to the train station, he commented that I seemed hesitant to go, which I am not. I am a mixture of excitement and anxiety; mostly about the speech I will be giving one week from today at the Indian Institute of Technology at Roorkee, northeast of Delhi.

I’m still working on it, working to find the right words, shape the phrases correctly, providing the appropriate information. It is challenging. And I am enjoying it, waking this morning with something that needed to be said, getting up and happily typing it in.

This will be my fourth time in India. Each one of those visits has provided me with great memories and experiences. More will come from this time, I’m sure. It may be hard to blog from there but I will make an effort.

Last night was only the second time since mid-November that I haven’t posted a daily blog. Wanting to savor the night before the journey, I built a fire in the Franklin stove and watch the sun slowly fade in the west, looking out the living room window as the world went from sun to dusky greys and then to dark. I made myself a martini and watched a little Netflix and then turned into bed.

This morning was a scruffle of activity as I went online and paid some bills, gathered things together to take down to the city, showered, dressed, cooked a light breakfast, texted my brother and his wife to make sure they had reached Lima, Peru alright.

They had. They are there with two of the grandchildren, going to Machu Picchu.

As I rumble south, staring out at the river, I find myself sleepy, surrendering to the journey. In thirty hours I will be in Delhi, on the other side of the world.

In England, King Richard III’s hearse has begun a long journey to be reburied. His remains were found in a buried friary under a car park in 2012. The coffin in which he will be buried is made of Cornwall oak and was fashioned by one of his descendants. He was killed at the Battle of Bosworth Field on August 22, 1485. It was the last major battle of the War of The Roses. Richard lost and the Tudors came to power.

In India, 600 students were expelled after footage surfaced of parents scaling walls to hand over cheat sheets to the 10th grade exams, which determine whether the students can continue with their education. It is a scandal in India and the pictures of parents climbing up several stories are quite something.

Underscoring how important education is, an Indian bride to be walked out on her husband to be when he failed to answer correctly a simple math problem. She asked him what 15 + 6 equals. He said 17. She left.

Most Indian marriages are arranged and the bride and groom don’t spend much time together before marriage. This young lady wanted to have some assurance as to the brightness of her husband to be.

The day is bright and hopeful, if chill. By the time I return from India, I hope that spring will have vanquished this old man winter. When I arrive in the city, I have one errand to do and then will go to the apartment and close my suitcases, call a car, and head to the airport.

Bon Voyage!

Letter From New York 12 14 14 A grey and gloomy day on the road to Christmas

December 14, 2014

The light is beginning to fade here in the Hudson Valley; it has been a painfully grey day. Not once has been there a burst of sunlight to shatter the exterior bleakness. Christmas carols are playing and they sound dirge-like against this shadowy day. It has been a day to cuddle inside and to read, reflect and do interior things.

I am having friends for dinner so started the day making fresh asparagus soup and prepping things for dinner. When I finish writing this, I will move on to the kitchen and start the meal.

Today, I also started doing Christmas cards, a few, adding personal notes to folks I have not seen for a long time and for who Christmas is seemingly our sole touch point.

A Climate Treaty has been signed in Lima though it seems that while all agree few are enthused. Scientists, I read, feel it falls far short of the actions needed to curtail climate change while some nations feel it costs them too much.

Cheney, to no one’s great surprise, is highly critical of the Senate “Torture” Report. Jeb Bush is giving some indications he is considering a 2016 run for the Presidency. Certainly Rick Perry is prepping for the race. He’s getting some coaching and has declared that the run for the Presidency is NOT an IQ test.

The good news/bad news story of oil continues. It slipped beneath $60.00 a barrel, which caused prices up here to drop to under $3.00 a gallon but which also shaved 350 points off the Dow on Friday, making for a scary Wall Street ride.

Some folks are saying it could go down to $40.00 a barrel, which would be very bad for the shale oil industry in North Dakota. It only makes money at about $60.00 a barrel. There are those who speculate that the Saudis are letting the price of a barrel of oil fall so as to get rid of the pesky shale oil producers here in America. After years of declining crude production in the US, the shale oil boom has made us something like the third largest oil producer in the world.

It’s certainly causing some hurt for Mr. Putin; Russia depends on its oil sales. The ruble has been crashing. Must seem like a grey day to him as well. Put Venezuela in that camp as well, hurting badly with the fall in prices. Same with Nigeria. Same with a few other countries, too.

Regardless of what is happening in the oil realm, all over the world we are moving toward Christmas.

It seems some Americans are eschewing an expensive Christmas and moving back toward simpler times with less extravagant celebrations of the Holiday. It will be interesting to see how this holiday shopping season works out in the end. Up? Down? We’ll know the figures right after Christmas.

On this grey day, Newtown is marking the second anniversary of the Sandy Hook shootings with a private ceremony and quiet reflection. It is a town where the wounds have yet to heal and may never heal.

In another gruesome story, hundreds attended the funeral of Jessica Chambers, a Mississippi teenager who was doused with an accelerant and burned alive on the side of a road.

The mind boggles at the act while the heart revolts at the cruelty.

A reward fund has risen to $11,000 for information leading to her killer.

It is stories like that which darken my day and make me feel as grey and gloomy as the weather.