Alan Carter (Thoughts on a Journey), has tagged me with the "8 things about you meme." Alan is a seminarian for the Diocese of Lexington, KY -- check his blog out. (He also has several blogs of guys in discernment/formation/seminary on his blogroll. Some of them will end up on mine shortly ... ) Well, it's been quite a while since I've been tagged, so here goes.
"The rules are simple…Each player lists 8 facts/habits about themselves. The rules of the game are posted at the beginning before those facts/habits are listed. At the end of the post, the player then tags 8 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know that they have been tagged and asking them to read your blog."
1. I'm left-handed. (There, you always knew there was something sinister about me!)
2. I'm somewhat of a polyglot. I also seem to have two "natural" "native" accents in English: American (on occasion with quite the Southern drawl) and Indian, and can switch effortlessly between one and the other. (In Hindi I can do the clipped Punjabi-influenced Delhi Hindi as well as Marthi-laced Bambaiyya.)
3. I've always wanted to fly. I love planes, aviation, flying, am an avid FlightSimmer and, though I've no earthly idea how this might be possible, dream of getting my PPL.
4. I trained in North Indian classical (vocal) from when I was about 7 or 8 till I was 21. In college, I was in a Russian folk song group for about three years. When under the influence of spirits, I've been known to spontaneously break into renditions of the Gosudar'tsvenii Gimn Sovyetskovo Soyuza (the national anthem of the erstwhile USSR), Podmoskovnyiye Vechera and Katyusha.
5. I could almost be considered half a Hajji (one who has performed the Hajj, the pilgrimage to Mecca). This is because I've been to the revered tomb of Kusam-ibn-Abbas, the Prophet's cousin, who is buried in the Shah-i-Zinda complex in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. According to what I remember being told, two visits to the tomb are considered the equivalent of performing the Hajj. Of course, there is no such thing as "half a Hajji," I'm a blasted kafir (well according to some, Christians are kafir) or a saleeby (crusader), I could never actually go to Mecca, and the visit to Samarkand wasn't a pilgrimage. Which is why I said "almost." :)
6. I've hiked up to one of the base camps of Kanchenjunga (the third highest peak in the world), in Sikkim in northeast India. I think this was to an altitude of 11000+ feet. Those who know me will probably find this to be most incredible.
7. I have a hard time praying. Both maintaining a disciplined prayer life, and concentrating while praying. The Zen expression "the monkey mind" (referring to the mind's endless leaping around from thought to thought) certainly applies to me.
8. I'm an extrovert ("off the chart" is the term the psychologist [who evaluated me when I was applying to seminary] used] and very much a people person.