Last summer when I was in India, I was talking with my co-workers about cooking and recipes. I asked, “Do you use basil in your cooking?”
Preran, one of the writers I work with, answered. “No we don’t use it for cooking. We worship it.” He went on to tell me that women have basil shrines as part of the household. Basil is apparently very good.
Anyway, later in the week Preran came with my husband and I on a weekend trip to Jaipur. While there, we went to a “historical Indian village” that locals visit. I thought of it as the Indian version of an “authentic frontier village” in the states. For the entry fee, you get a free authentic historical meal. And waiting for the meal, you can enjoy authentic entertainment (puppet shows, beautiful girls dancing with towers of pots on their heads, snake charmers. . . . .). You can play on the playground or take an elephant, horse, or camel ride. Or you can stroll around the recreations of various authentic historical buildings styles and periods.
As we strolled along, Preran stopped and pointed. “There! See! A basil shrine. But that isn’t basil. If the basil shrine contained basil, we’d have to stop and worship it.”
I loved India!