Friday, 20 November 2009

Chai with friends

On the last evening in Jaipur, our auto-rickshaw driver, Ram Hotla invited us to meet his family, in his home, just outside our hotel. Earlier during the day, Ram drove us around Jaipur, up to the Amber Fort and stopping at a few places of interest before leaving us at the City Palace. He also acted as our guide, briefly at the King's Tomb on the way to Amber Fort. He speaks great English and was a very informative guide.

He lives in a community of buildings including his extended family, all with the Hotla surname, some 200 members in all.

That evening, we met his 3 daughters who were all watching a Hindi soap on satellite TV, his wife and son. Mrs Hotla made us freshly brewed chai and posed for photos.

We chatted about his daughter's schooling, his son's job and his other extended family members. Ram has been an auto-driver for 35 years, and his wife is from Delhi. His daughters go to a local private school and are taught English there. He takes them to school every day in his auto-rickshaw which I thought was great!

He also invited us to visit his home village situated on the road to Agra. That will be for another time. Ram, we hope to see you again next year in Jaipur.

(Click on the photos to enlarge)


Pak Zawi said...

Even Ram values an English education for his children to prepare them for the world. I wonder why Malaysian leaders are so blind to the need for an education in English.

svllee said...

Hi Pak Zawi, thanks for your visit. Yes, it is indeed a wonder why our leaders are so short-sighted in the need to learn and master English in our schools. It is up to families and individuals themselves to be pro-active and to adapt to situations. Unfortunately, many households in Malaysia cannot afford private tuition or schools to learn the necessary English or may also be blinkered by attitudes that it is a 'colonial' language, both within Malay and Chinese families equally.