Quite the far cry from the scenes of this weekend as I sit breathing the fragrance of french fries and obesity, catching a glimpse of life in this rural small town off the highway.
A visit to a prospective job for Ian took us to Fairfax, VA, a place that we would very much like to make our future home. We were lucky to stay with Ian's good friend and former roommate, Angad, and his parents, two of the nicest and most hospitable people I have ever met. Because it is always a new and exciting experience when Ian and I travel together, we found that this weekend we got some awesome new experiences with the Indian culture. First things first, Angad informed us that he wanted to take us to the Sikh Temple on Sunday morning, which we knew would most likely be quite the change from our typical Sunday morning Power-Point church services with coffee and donuts.
We headed to the temple around 11:30 am, after posing for some photos first...Mrs. Kalra let me wear (and keep!) one of her beautiful dresses!
Ian snapped this candid photo of me zoning out. I kind of like it.
The men sit on one side of the temple and the women sit on the other on the floor. It was a very peaceful service that mostly consisted of music and prayer--Angad's parents also asked them to pray for me and Ian's upcoming marriage (and the only way we knew when it was happening was because we were just able to make out our names in the midst of the unfamiliar language). Very different from anything I've ever seen, but it was a neat experience! Afterwards, everyone gathered in the room downstairs to eat a holy meal that was prepared during the service. Again, everyone sat on the floor and unlike most post-church functions I am used to attending, didn't really speak to each other. It seemed that it was meant to be a peaceful and reflective time. And, oh my, was the food delicious.
After church, Angad's family always goes grocery shopping. So we tagged along to the Super H Mart, which looks like a regular grocery store on the outside...but on the inside, miles and miles of ALL Asian cuisine. The place was a madhouse, too...it was like Black Friday meets Giant meets the Super Buffet, as there was no shortage of free samples.
We enjoyed some more Indian cooking that evening from Mrs. Kalra (SO GOOD!) and fed our food comas with some leftover Easter candy and Tron on Angad's 3D TV. It truly was a weekend of new experiences.
Well, McDonalds is quickly filling up for the dinner rush of back country, PA...as well as some kind of McTeacher appreciation event. I see balloons, raffle tickets, and ladies wearing aprons. I think this is my cue to leave.
But first....I think a McFlurry is in order.