White, American woman traveling to India for first time...nervous

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#31 May 8th, 2014, 23:33
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#31
The rule with "charun" (charan) sparsha is to telegraph what you are going to do, so that the recipient yelps and says "no, no, not necessary" and steps back and tries to hold you up. You then make a show of struggling with him or her for the honor, and then compromise by going halfway to knee level. May not work with recipients who feel they have a right to the full monty (spouse's parents or grandparents) but works with others.

It's like spinning a Tibetan prayer wheel is as good as praying...you don't have to touch the feet to "touch" the feet.
Last edited by RPG; May 9th, 2014 at 01:32..
#32 May 9th, 2014, 01:12
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#32
Thanks for the replys guys (:

Im also a bit nervous because my fiance is the only person in his family who speaks English, so there will probably be alot lost in translation. He tells me they will giggle at me alot as well haha.
#33 May 9th, 2014, 01:22
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#33
It's too much indeed and would like to see who does that.[/QUOTE]

It's very common in South Indian families to do a "full" namaskaram before elders, especially before leaving their home. Just an opportunity to get their blessings. I do it twice every day to ease my back.... Try it
#34 May 9th, 2014, 01:36
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#34
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Originally Posted by EllaEnchanted View Post Im also a bit nervous because my fiance is the only person in his family who speaks English
Ah, then I withdraw what I said about the likelihood of sitting in a spiffy drawing room and drinking scotch.

In Punjab, there are some well-off farmers (and other professions) in the villages. However, your future relatives may be less-educated and thus possibly either poor or until-recently-poor. Not to be indelicate, but economic status is really the most reliable predictor of the cultural problems you might encounter. Now I am a little worried for you.
Last edited by RPG; May 9th, 2014 at 02:52..
#35 May 9th, 2014, 02:26
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#35
Quote:
It's very common in South Indian families to do a "full" namaskaram before elders
I think it is for very spoecial people, or very special occasions only. I was joking.

Quote:
I do it twice every day to ease my back
#36 May 9th, 2014, 03:54
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#36
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Originally Posted by RPG View Post Ah, then I withdraw what I said about the likelihood of sitting in a spiffy drawing room and drinking scotch.

In Punjab, there are some well-off farmers (and other professions) in the villages. However, your future relatives may be less-educated and thus possibly either poor or until-recently-poor. Not to be indelicate, but economic status is really the most reliable predictor of the cultural problems you might encounter. Now I am a little worried for you.
Oh no haha! Well his parents are pretty well off, and his brother speaks *some* English. His parents actually own their own business in Nagpur. As for the rest of his family in the village...thats where im worried. All I know is that they have pictures of me and they like how I look.
#37 May 9th, 2014, 05:01
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#37
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Originally Posted by EllaEnchanted View Post All I know is that they have pictures of me and they like how I look.
हाँ, गोरी तो है।

I'll leave it to others to translate that into Punjabi and English.
#38 May 9th, 2014, 05:29
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#38
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Originally Posted by Golghar View Post हाँ, गोरी तो है।

I'll leave it to others to translate that into Punjabi and English.
Yes, it is fair?
#39 May 9th, 2014, 07:37
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#39
RPG has it pegged, its a bit of theatre. My mother in law would stop me while I was making a sincere effort to reach. As we got older she stopped me sooner. Then she suffered a stroke and was bedridden. Then I reached and wept..
#40 May 9th, 2014, 08:03
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#40
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Originally Posted by Golghar View Post हाँ, गोरी तो है।

I'll leave it to others to translate that into Punjabi and English.
Ah. Yes she is white.
#41 May 9th, 2014, 08:26
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#41
"हाँ, गोरी तो है।" Means, "Yes, at least she is white".

(We will excuse her faults, as long as she is not a darkie!)

Be careful; and good luck!
#42 May 9th, 2014, 08:45
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#42
Time can either improve things or make them worse. On my last trip I saw a "perfect" marriage explode and people teased me that mine had been controversial and lasted (crossing fingers)..
#43 May 9th, 2014, 09:19
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#43
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Originally Posted by edwardseco View Post Then she suffered a stroke and was bedridden. Then I reached and wept..
At least among the Bengalis I know, it is taboo to touch the feet of someone who is alive but lying down, because it is reminiscent of what one must do when the person is dead. If it is attempted, the recipient will try to get up or at least lift his/her head.
#44 May 9th, 2014, 09:53
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#44
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Originally Posted by EllaEnchanted View Post Yes she is white.
Correct but does not capture the added "toh", whose meaning is all in the context and intonation. It could be "at least she is white", as suggested above, or it could be "but then, she is white" (so don't mind her uncouth behavior).
#45 May 9th, 2014, 11:11
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#45
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Originally Posted by RPG View Post Correct but does not capture the added "toh", whose meaning is all in the context and intonation. It could be "at least she is white", as suggested above, or it could be "but then, she is white" (so don't mind her uncouth behavior).
I always figured when people talk about the fair skin obsession in India it meant they were talking about light skinned Indians, not actual white people. After all I am from another country and of a different religion, which some totally disagree with.
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