Tuesday, July 31, 2012

American Toiletry Hoarder

This post is dedicated to Fran and Lauren who appreciate the comparisions.

I know I've written before about my great appreciation of particular toiletries. I can't help it. I just know what I like and what works with my blonde, curly hair in a city that's extremely hot and humid majority of the year. I'll admit it. I have a problem.

My toiletry loves becomes amplified living abroad. I hoard them. While majority of the world's population buys what they need as they consume it; I condense my year-long shopping experience into 10 weeks. While those of you living in the U.S. may make a weekly or monthly trip to Target, I make about three or four a year. So when you buy one stick of Secret deodorant, I buy four.

Finding my loves in Mumbai compared to Brasilia is exponentially greater. I can buy so many things here that I couldn't in Brasil so I did try to take that into consideration this time however, I still managed to have three checked bags and an extremely overweight carry-on bag with fun new tech like a bluetooth speaker and new digital SLR camera.

These are my toiletry and kitchen piles. It's bad, I know.
So what things did I bring along that I didn't think I could get here or have a particular affinity to?

  • Curly haired products,
  • Blonde hair products,
  • Face washes and products for my crazy sensitive skin,
  • Coffee,
  • Chocolate chips,
  • Peanut butter cups (feel free to send more),
  • Shoes,
  • Bras and underwear,
  • Dresses,
  • oh and lots more.
I know, I have a problem but compared to Brazil, I only brought three bags rather than four. I think I'm improving a little, right?

Monday, July 30, 2012

Bootless Blondie Returns to Bombay

I woke up early this morning and noticed it wasn't raining so around 6:30 am (not too bad for day 1 jet lag), I slipped on my new sneaks and headed out for a wog.

As I left, I put in my headphones after saying hello to my new guards.

My new street was quiet. A couple of rickshaw drivers chatting. A man outside on his balcony stretching who waved and smiled at me. Turning the corner and heading toward the market, people were just emerging. Women in saris buying eggs. Men picking up tobacco. Lots of looks and smiles exchanged.

As I continued toward the sea and down a hill, I thought, "The streets are slippery. Be careful," knowing my klutzy self. Suddenly I remembered last year's arrival to Bombay.

I was in an orthopedic boot. Starting to live in a new country while wearing a boot and having a sprained ankle during monsoon season is hard. I know others really do know about this (unfortunately). It felt confining. People would head out for adventures, dinner, shopping, riding the train and I couldn't go along. There were the issues of my boot getting soaked, slippery streets and with the humidity lots of swelling. I know, I know. Your little violin is playing for me.

So today being able to slip on not one but two sneakers,  felt great. I was able to enjoy the smell of the sea (not other things), dodge puddles and smile at the others who were up early and walking along Carter Road.

What a difference a year makes. Not only can I go on a walk on my first day back, but I actually know how to get to the ocean by myself too.

My new kicks. Sans boot!

Walking along the sea. It really smelled good today which was a nice treat. Sorry for the fuzzy shot.