Yesterday, at around 2:30, just after the cleaning lady arrived (yes, we have a bi-weekly cleaning lady. Thank god......) Mia and I heard a very loud noise coming from outside. The noise sounded like tabla drums and a slightly off-tune male singer singing exotic songs, all of which was coming through a bad sound system. Mia was immediately excited. She rushed to the window to see what was going on, but we couldn't see anything.
Iris (that would be our cleaning lady) told us that the music was just down the street and looked like it might be an Indian wedding. "Go and see if they have an elephant," she said. We went downstairs and Mia burst out the door, running towards this huge, colorful tent. She stopped at the edge of the street (we have been really training her on this one. Sometimes she just starts to babble: Mia, too little. Cross the street, big, big ouch. Take hand. I really love the Tarzan language of small children!) and soon we crossed, hand in hand of course, and this is what we saw:
Hundreds of women in beautiful saris. Saris truly are the most elegant piece of clothing in the world. They are intensely colorful without being garish, feminine and yet simple and (I'm assuming) comfortable. Though they have a few variations in cut and flow, they are all basically the same in concept yet so individual since the colors and ornamentation on the cloth varies so much. Mia immediately felt at home. She went and stood in the crowd to listen to the music while I started taking photographs.
She felt so at home, in fact, that when they started to march down the street she immediately marched with them, not once looking back. Soon I had lost her in the crowd. I wasn't really that worried- all I would have to do is shout out "Has anyone seen the little white girl who isn't in a sari?"- but still, it was pretty hard to keep up with a baby buggy and Baby Li in tow. We did finally find her again and stood listening to music together (the procession stopped for ten minutes or so).
When they started marching down Skalitzer Strasse I had to grab her out of the crowd (it was a very hot day and I didn't want to wander too far since we had to be back in an hour). Poor little Mia cried and cried. We bought a sticker to support the local Hindu temple (the parade was in its honor) and put it on the buggy under Mia's feet. "Music, music," she kept on saying as she looked at it.
Miss Mia really seems to especially love "World" music. We also heard a Samba drumming band about a week ago and she was in ecstasy, stomping along in rhythm to the beat. Today I pulled out some old c.d.s (funny how no one listens to c.d.s anymore, just whatever is on the ipod...) and played some Samba music for her. She had a dance party for one for at least 45 minutes and didn't even want to go to the playground when I asked her. Later we switched to salsa, which also kept her diaper-wagging for a while. Little Miss Mia, my musical bird!