I am staying in the TERI office building (cum guesthouse) for the duration of our training program in Uttar Pradesh (UP). More on the training in a separate post soon.
UP is hot and flat. The high temperature has been above 100 every day I’ve been here, and 115 degrees today. It’s literally baking and hard to think if I’m not under and AC and a fan. Of course, the AC goes out constantly throughout the day, so I have a permasweat on my forehead and sometimes all over.
Here is Alyssa in our first shared bedroom – now we’ve moved to the first floor and share with V as well. It’s somewhat crowded, but we don’t spend any time in the room all except for sleeping, since we’re busy with the training or other jobs upstairs all day and evening.
Here’s where we eat our meals. There aren’t any fans in this room so it’s pretty steamy.
Here is where the cook makes the magic. He is a vegetarian cook, which is great for me! I enjoy his food, and haven’t been sick here at all – going a week without some sort of stomach issue is practically a first for me in India. For breakfast, we usually have paratha (lightly fried bread) and some vegetable. My favorite is anything other than aloo/potato- I just get sick of rice, bread, and a starchy vegetable on top of that. In India, when people say “veg” (as a dish or filling) it’s usually potato. I’m not used to thinking of potato as a vegetable back home!
For lunch, we have dal, rice, chapati, and some sort of veg (yes, you guessed it, often potato). For dinner, there’s dal, rice, chapati, and some sort of veg. Sound familiar? Good think I like this food! Yesterday we had some truly amazing mangos from a nearby market and now I’m determined to have them every day both to be healthy and because they are really like candy.
And yes, the TERI building has an LPG stove (this is a stove blog, after all). This means there is no cooking smoke filling the building, except what spills in from outside.
Here is the view from the second story. The building faces a new construction site where workers toil in bare feet and bare heads through the hot day carrying and laying bricks.
This is one of the restrooms in the building. There are no western toilets, so it’s all squatting. The showers work in 2 of the bathrooms, and the other only has a tap for a bucket. No water heater here – and none needed! A cool-ish shower is a treat in this heat. There aren’t fans in the bathrooms either, so they can also be quite sweltering.
The building opens onto a large open air hall on both floors, with reflective windows to the interior rooms.
This is the stairway in the open air hall. I’m particularly fascinated by the giant gap between the metal lattice – it would be quite easy for me to jump down through the railings if I wanted, let alone a child! Thankfully, there aren’t kids running around here.