Monday, November 11, 2019

Iceland, Cambodia and a bit of Hindi

Big Monday in the shuttle today.

I’ve had a new Sienna for 5 weeks. It’s an AWD; all wheel drive. 
Today I needed it. The snow. Wonderful stuff. Vroom vroom.

I had a Pakistani man and an Indian woman speaking Hindi to each other. Nice to hear something different.

And I met Thor today too; raised in Iceland. He was the third of three out. We had quite a ride. He’s an architect at a global mining company. Mining is up again. He’s helping the expansion. And, because we had such a lengthy ride together I asked him to tell me something in the language; a joke, recipe, bedtime story.

He spoke what might have been 40 or 50 words and finished with: “I bet you didn’t understand a word of it.”

“Nope.” He did not clue me in either.

"I can hear English all day long.” I told him.

Iceland is the 84th nation on my list.

I also met a fellow born in Cambodia, raised in Thailand. He spent quite a bit of time in Milwaukee and now resides in Wausau. I suspect he’s Hmong. I did not ask.

"Wausau? Quite a drive for an oil change. What are you doing in Milwaukee?" I asked. 

They, he and his wife, come down to Milwaukee several times a month to shop. He likes the city. I dropped them off at Potawatomi for lunch and slots while their car was being serviced. It's her birthday today.

Cambodia represents my 85th nation.

Two new nations in one day.

The next day I meet a fellow from Kerala in Southwest India. He's got a couple paperback books. One in English. The other in his state language of Malayalam.

He doesn't speak Hindi. He says Hindi is spoken in the north. He mentions he's a Christian since his great-grandfather at least. Apparently St. Thomas wandered over in 52 AD. The Portuguese brought some form of Catholicism in the 1500's.
Wikipedia does indicate that there are a lot of Hindus and Muslims in Kerala.

Maybe things have changed. He left in 1972 to go to college in Montreal, lived a while in California and Chicago. And now a long time in Milwaukee. I wished I had asked him to speak in has native language; a recipe, bedtime story, a joke ... anything.

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