Monday, October 04, 2010

one other little note about chandawal

There is a lower standard of medical care in much of India than we're used to in the west; Prati's mom is the same age as my grandfather's girlfriend, but the mom looks a good two to three decades older. Accordingly, many of the folks I met in Chandawal (and in Beawar, for that matter) were missing teeth, limping and clearly coping with all sorts of pain and illness.

Americans tend to emphasize appearances, going beyond fit and healthy in favor of beauty aids like Spanx and cosmetic surgeries. I know I've been guilty of judging others for "letting themselves go." But when things we take for granted, like keeping your own teeth, are unfeasible, they cease to matter, and I was struck by the impression that people approach others as the human beings that they are, not the outer bodies.

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