have i mentioned that i live with a telecom engineer?

that sometimes makes life interesting.
in some ways it almost feels like it makes me and my husband as different as being from opposite sides of the world does.
one of us has a masters in theology, the other in telecommunications...we're just wired different.

though usually i genuinely appreciate his engineeriness (new word of the day).
it totally balances me out. i tend toward the creative and abstract (ok, so the non-practical), and he can solve the problems of the world with excel sheets.

he also keeps me up to date with the latest technology, and this week he got me a new phone.

i say he got a phone for me, but if you live with a telecom engineer then you know that any telecommunications device that enters the house goes through an elaborate series of tests and evaluations (aka engineer playtime) before it is fully passed on to the spouse.
so yeah, basically my husband got a new phone this week. haha.

but i must say, i'm really pleased with his choice (which came after months of research of course).

i'm a loyal tmobile gal, and also a mac person, which it turns out don't mix when it comes to the iphone. so i've been waiting for another smart phone that thinks like a normal person and not an engineer. thank you husband.

i love you babe. so you keep picking out the electronics...and i'll keep picking out your clothes.
i think that's only fair. :)

shomik and i recently had to make a little day trip to houston for some visa business, and while we were down that far anyways, and since we had a bit of time to kill once we got down there, we decided to take a little side trip to galveston.

ok, so people will complain about the beaches in texas...
yeah, sure, it may not be florida or whatever, but it's still a beach, and i still love it!

in fact, shomik and i got engaged in galveston. so getting to take a trip back there was a little romantic for us. we hadn't been back since because the island had been pretty damaged by hurricane ike a couple years ago. but it looked like the city had really rebuilt, and it was great to see that place again!

but first on the way there, shomik had to take me to his favorite indian restaurant...where he stocked up on one of his all time favorite indian foods. puranpuri.

not really sure how to describe what that is, except for that its like a tortilla stuffed with sweet goodness.

we did get a little surprise once we got our bill though...
hey, wait a sec...that last thing isn't what we ordered! hehe. worst typo ever.
lesson: don't try to spell out english words phonetically if you have an indian accent! :)

but anyways, on to galveston!

we happened to have the dogs with us, because we didn't want them stuck in the house for 16+ hours, and they like road trips, so they got to enjoy the beach with us too!

so pardon the cheesiness and the crappy phone video quality, but i compiled a quick video of our time at the beach with the doggies....combined with my favorite glen campbell song! once again. i apologize! haha.

anytime i go to galveston i always have this song stuck in my head!
you're welcome. :)

if you noticed that numa isn't a part of the seaside fun, it's because she's a big party pooper when it comes to water. this was about as close as we could get her to the action.

and lets just say that on the way home, us and the dogs pretty much had sand in every corner and crevice. bindi went a little sand crrrrazy.

but all in all our little detour to galveston gave us an awesome and unexpected little break that i think we were both seriously needing.

and it's crazy hard to believe that it's been almost exactly 4 years since our last trip there when we got engaged! it seems like yesterday, and yet also so many things have happened and changed in that time.

but i think galveston will always hold a special place in my heart now, since i made the best decision of my life there...i promised to marry shomik!

yes, it turned out to be a wonderful decision indeed. :)

the notorious indian head bobble.
this is another funny cross cultural thing that i encounter constantly in india, and even in my own house. hehe.

does it mean yes? does it mean no? what on earth...

if you don't know what i'm talking about, here's a quick video explanation.

when my husband gives me the head bobble, it's often partnered with a 'hmmmm.'

to an american, 'hmmm' kind of translates as 'what?'
but to an indian, 'hmmm' is pretty much the vocal equivalent of the head bobble...
like the head bobble, more often than not it means 'yes'.

that's the thing with the head bobble. it can kind of mean what you want it to. but it seems most often to me to be a kind of reluctant yes.

in indian culture, if someone asks you to do a favor or something, it's impolite to say no...even if you can't do it. so my guess is that the head bobble evolved out of thousands of years of the reluctant yes, and the yes that is really a no. it's kind of inbetween.

you all know what i'm talking about. saying yes to be polite, but you know deep down that you're not going to do whatever you just said yes to. :P

anyways, i may have just made this thing even more confusing...
but i'm kind of starting to think that's the point of it. ambiguity.
you asked me a question? the answer is whatever you decide you want it to mean!

ok, so one of the major cultural things americans get freaked out about in indian culture is arranged marriage... i used to initially as well.

but after being surrounded by indian culture for a few years, i am starting to understand some of the benefits.

first of all, arranged marriage these days isn't really how people might imagine it.
basically family introduces people to each other, and if they find someone they like then they commit to the match and spend the next few months getting to know each other before they tie the knot.

rarely are there cases anymore of meeting someone the day of your wedding or something...and people usually have a say in who they will marry.

american parents try to match their kids up too...just in a less formal way, and with less authority.

as a girl in the usa though, dating can be a stressful way to find a husband. american men often don't know where they're going in a relationship. in some ways the indian method gives a lot more security. you're only meeting people with the intention of marriage...plus you have a little help.

deep down i think many americans want that...a less haphazard way of finding a spouse.
that's why we've come up with eharmoney and all those other matching sites, right?

to me the biggest difference between that and arranged marriage is the role that family plays. and that's a whole other issue.

i'm about to have to help arrange my sis in law, which is definitely a role i never in my wildest dreams would have imagined taking on! when it comes down to it like that, it still feels pretty foreign to me...

and of course i love a good love marriage! ;) and so do indians...just look at all the bollywood movies!

when indian and american cultures meet, the result can be often very amusing.
just ask us...we're always finding funny little things to laugh about.

so one of the new sitcoms this season has us cracking up. it's a show called 'outsourced', and it's based loosely on the movie by the same name that came out a few years ago. basically, american called center manager gets sent to india where his office has been outsourced to, and hilarity ensues.

the food. the traffic. the head bobble. the cow.
it brings up a lot of the cultural things that make us laugh.
so stay tuned on future posts featured my take on the crazy cross cultural stuff! :)

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i looove days like today.
today felt like how saturdays should be.
was i super productive? not really.
but i think that's what made it great...that and the gorgeous weather.

days like this come too few and far between. it seems like there's always something that needs done or something going on. of course there were things i could have been doing today, but that's always the case, isn't it?

today felt like a real sabbath. i need to make time for more of those somehow. i always think it, but rarely do it.

started off the day by walking 3 miles with my hubby. there's this cute little path that goes by a park with waterfalls, so it almost feels more like you're going on a hike.

on our walk we discovered a farmer's market that's opened up in our neighborhood on saturdays now! so we showed a bit of support by buying some apples, and eating lunch on the patio of a restaurant a few yards away.

the rest of the day was spent grocery shopping, doing a few necessary chores, and then buying lemonade from some kids at a lemonade stand down the street.
did i really want lemonade? not really. but the kids were super cute, and it was only .50, so i couldn't say no.

now i'm finishing the day by delving into an awesome book i borrowed from a friend called "The Girl from Foreign", while i sit in my indian swing. ahhh! i love a good book. more on the book later.

but anyways, awesome day. who knows what the rest of the evening will hold. i'm trying hard to stay away from any real work if i can though. :) these kinds of days just don't come often enough.

i guess there's a reason God told us to take a sabbath. my mental health feels improved already.

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