banana hammocks and getting fat

July 16, 2007

So I finally woke up today at the decent hour of 6.30.  I literally snuck out of my house in my yoga pants and Rob Dobi shirt (k8 and dan’s perfect going away gift) and texted Jill that I was ‘on my way’.  Up till this week any sort of physical activity resembling running was not such a hot idea.  Jill’s host sister slowly woke up, then the three of us were on our way.  Past trash heaps, silent homes, trucks coughing exhaust, the neighborhood dog posse, cross a divided highway, dodging buses…our feet hit rough sand sharp with shells.  We were at the Caspian.  The sun had risen, but it was still dawn, and appropriate for us to be out exercising.  After leading our sister quizzically through stretches, Jill took off jogging, while I walked.  The beach is hardly flat, cut up by numerous pipes, dumping brown liquid into the serf.  There were fishermen, sporting nothing but banana hammocks on the beach, and out in the waves, up to their armpits in water, casting lines.  A really bad, dank smell; think the inside of an abandoned building, but more fishy.  A huge view.  There was a moment when I thought, ‘God what am I doing here, so far from anything I know, full of flaws, utterly pathetic, do you think it I can do it God, do I deserve this chance?’  I supposes that may be seen as slightly doubting, or implying that I lack confidence…its more that I’m overcome with the heaping measures of grace and mercy that have been granted me and I know God knows what He’s doing, ‘cause its sometimes hard to see. 

7.30 am walking on the Caspian, not a bad way to start a Wednesday.


I find it highly amusing that men are allowed to wear banana hammocks on the Caspian Beach. But are considered *ahem* gay if they wear shorts anywhere.   In fact, a friend demonstrated the utter lack of self consciousness that men have in regard to the hammock issue by dropping trousers and frolicking around one night in the serf.  Hammocks should never be worn by any male not swimming in the Olympics.  However, women are considered to be lose if they: show their shoulders, skin above the knees, cleavage, midriff, wear anything really short, tight or deity forbid, spaghetti strap tank tops.  IMO, it’s worse to have boys, guys and men prancing around in nasty grundies than women showing a scandalous thigh.

In desperation, I simply resorted to gestures and random sounds.  I had to tell my host mother that its not that I didn’t like the meals served, it’s just that, I simply cannot eat that much.  My sister, good at summarizing, said ‘so basically you are scared you will be fat if you eat that much?’  Yeah, what took me about 20 min. of stupid gestures, she simply uttered and solved the problem with my host mother trying to stuff me like a prize deer.  Before I left I was on a cheap diet of 99cent Clif Bars, apples from target and the food the roomie didn’t want (pretty much trail mix and fresh spinach).  Being force fed 4-5 times a day is not working in with the whole ‘stay healthy and don’t gain so much weight you are unrecognizable when you take a holiday’ plan.  A little explanation, guest are treated with utmost respect, it’s a cultural habit to serve them food.  Dinners with family are very important; having a meal with them is a way for them to show you respect; similarly it means they trust you to a certain extent.  Being constantly fed is a way for my host family to show that they care for me.  Its nice being loved, even in this odd way. 

*i shall try image shack for pictures… dial up makes me want to cry!!!*

3 Responses to “banana hammocks and getting fat”

  1. siologen said

    Hmm, banana Hammock, im guessing are what we call Budgie Smugglers… or ‘Speedo’s’? Yeah most ppl dont like em over here either.

    Dont worry, if you do end up getting fat, remember, teh boobies get fatter too 😀

    Seen any drains down by Prince Caspian?

  2. Brian said

    I share your opinion on hammocks and scandalous thighs. I loved your description of morning along the sea, I could almost hear it…

    What sort of food are they filling you up with?

  3. Mike said

    Yikes, that’s what a Budgie Smuggler is? Good thing I didn’t buy that (Aussie-made) camera bag of the same name… Damn you, Crumpler…

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