Invitation To Dinner…

…Yesterday, the head physician at the rural hospital honored me with an invitation to dinner at his home. Today, I went to his home along the border between Delhi and Faridabad and had an amazing time visiting with him and his family.

They live in a very clean and secure looking compound of high rise apartment buildings with extensive parking and grass lawns. They are Sikhs and originally from Punjab, a state along the border of Pakistan. On the most prominent wall of their home was a large photo of their guru, from whom they seek spiritual guidance.

I learned just how influential the guru can be from the parents’ story of their marriage. The father recited the events, describing that he was a young medical student (in Moscow, of all places!) who had returned home and was very busy with friends but found out that his guru was preaching that day. He took time out of his plans and decided to attend. At the end of the session, the guru called him forward (a rare occasion). He was afraid that he had done something wrong. Instead, however, he was asked if the woman next to him was suitable for him to marry. She was the guru’s suggestion. He immediately bowed to the guru’s feet in nearly instant affirmation. The young woman was also asked if he was suitable, to which she also responded yes. The new couple was married on the spot. The young man canceled his plans with friends and went home with his new wife. They have been happily married for 11 years and have two wonderfully pleasant and polite children.

I was shown dozens of photos, several of the mother’s paintings, and the children’s room with each of their respective toy cabinets.

The dinner was delicious and consisted of papad, curd, mixed vegetables (potato, cauliflower, and peas), chopped fresh veggies (tomato and onion), bean soup, and chapati. Before dinner, I had been served fresh juice, a delicious herbal tea, and snacks of pecans, almonds, and raisins from Uzbekistan. After dinner, I was given little cubes of sugar to aid digestion.

The hospitality and generosity of people and their families here is unsurpassed. They invited me to come back anytime, an offer I will certainly take them up on.