Right Hand For Eating. Left Hand For Toilet Paper.

Bhubaneswar Travel Blog

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The monks who offered me some food at a temple in Bhubaneswar

I got off the bus at Bhubaneswar this morning, left my backpack under lock and key at the train station cloak room and set off to check out some of the temples this city is famous for.  I unfortunately encountered more attempts to guilt me into donating more money to each temple I visited, but at least this time it wasn’t new to me.


One temple I did enjoy was one of the temples that lined the Bindu Sagar, a body of water (known as a tank) where the water is considered holy.   I don’t remember the name because I visited about 4 or 5 temples that afternoon and this one wasn’t listed in Lonely Planet. 


Anyways, one of the monks showed me around the humble complex by showing me how the Hindu followers prayed and where guests come to enjoy a good meal of rice, masala and some other foods I don’t know the names of, all on banana leaf.  He insisted that I try their food and it was delicious.  The monks were very kind and seemed to be really happy that I sat with them for a quick meal.  I sat on the floor to eat and for my friends who don’t know how Indians eat, I could only eat using my right hand. 


The left hand is for unclean things like toilet duties.  I myself don’t use the “hand” technique.  I prefer toilet paper thank you very much!  Especially since you don’t always find soap next to the sinks.  But I still only use my right hand to eat so that the locals don’t stare at me in disgust!


Back to the temple.  That was a pleasant visit.  And the goodness and warm fuzzy feelings lasted all the way until I stepped onto my train from Bhubaneswar to Chennai a few hours later. 


But that’s the next entry.

DefDulce says:
Did you hire a guide for the temple hopping?
Posted on: Jul 15, 2008
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The monks who offered me some food…
The monks who offered me some foo…
photo by: debrasiegel