Yesterday when I got back home at 9.30 after Yaya’s basketball practice, as soon as I opened the door, the first thing I noticed was the dining table. It was set and dinner was ready. The house was very quiet and I couldn’t find my aunt and uncle, which was very odd. I checked the bedrooms, the washrooms and finally found them in the pergola. Both of them were sitting in the pergola, with their legs crossed and praying silently. ( They are Buddhists and my aunt chants Om mani padme hum 1000 times every day)
I have a small statue of Buddha in the pergola. I bought it for no particular reason. I didn’t think of my relatives when I bought it, but it made them very happy.
Same time last year, I had my relatives from Kerala staying with me. We always eat our dinner at 7 pm ( except when my kids have sports practice) and because that, I often do not let the children eat a heavy snack when they come back home from school. So by 7, they are famished.. On the first day of their stay, when I served dinner at 7 pm as usual, my cousin declared ” we should pray before dinner” My kids rolled their eyes. Then they asked for the bible. We don’t have a bible at home. My relatives were scandalized. Then they wanted to sing hymns. My children don’t know any hymns. I was given a lecture of how irresponsible I was. And then the prayers started..it included weeping, pleading and begging and it went on and on. While the prayers continued, my children decided to eat, because there was no end in sight for the prayer session and they were really hungry. They also had to do their homework.
I was given another lecture as to how to show respect and treat my guests.
I don’t understand why Indians act this way.