Monday, February 23, 2009

In Bangladesh

Written by Danielle, Simon and Pam while John is teaching English

We are all learning to write our names in Bangla script.
What we’ve been eating in Bangladesh

Since coming to Bangladesh we have had rice for two meals a day. We are not cooking our own meals, so we are eating Bangla food everyday. Curry is served with each meal. Most of the time there is chicken with the curry. It is spicy. Another typical dish that we have with almost every meal is dahl. It is a type of curry that looks like soup. We also have mixed fried vegetables like onions, potatoes, cauliflower, cabbage and peppers mixed with curry. Sometimes there is fish instead of chicken.

For breakfast we have roti and fried eggs. Roti is a flatbread like a big tortilla.

After eating the same thing for two weeks, it is starting to taste like cardboard.

We often eat with our hands, only our right hand. The left hand is for using in the bathroom. Don’t worry, we still use toilet paper that we bring ourselves. When eating with your hand, you mix all the different foods together with the rice. When everything is mixed together then you eat it. It is important to wash your hands before and after each meal.
We went to a wedding in Birisiri. This is the rice that was prepared for all the guests.

The only place to find pizza and spaghetti is in an American restaurant in the capital city of Dhaka. We have not been to one of these places yet. We are looking forward to going next week.

Where we’ve been staying in Bangladesh

We have stayed in three different places in Bangladesh. When we arrived we stayed in Dhaka for only a few days. We stayed at a guesthouse that is like a simple hotel. Most of our time has been in the city of Mymensingh. It is north of Dhaka.

When we are in Mymensingh we live in an apartment. We have a cook named Bipul. He only cooks Bangla food. At the apartment there are lots of kids around who like to play cricket and badminton. They like to stand and play very close to us, so we have to be careful that no one gets in our way, or gets hurt. We bought a cricket bat at a fair, and badminton raquets at a small store.

We are in the town of Birisiri, which is close to the northern border with India, for ten days. We are staying at the YMCA. It costs $5.00 at night for a room. We think maybe it would get a half-star rating. Fortunately it is not dirty, just run down. And the only bugs are lots of mosquitoes at night. We sleep under a mosquito net.

We have traveled from Birisiri to several different villages. We often travel by motorcycle. It is fun. Danielle wrote a song about riding on a motorcycle. The scenery is beautiful. We see many rice fields. We also see the hills that make up the border with India. The air is much better in Birisiri and the villages than in the other cities. However, the villages and travelling on the dirt roads is very dusty.
This is Danielle (and Simon) riding on the back of a motorcycle near Birisiri.

What we are wearing in Bangladesh

In Bangladesh all women wear a sari or a salwar kameez and orna. A sari is one very long piece of cloth that is wrapped around your body many times. A salwar kameez is a long shirt worn over baggy long pants, and the orna is a scarf you wear around your shoulders. The saris and salwar kameez come in many different colours and patterns. Danielle and Pam each have two salwar kameez.

Many men wear shirts and long pants. Almost all the farmers and rickshaw drivers wear a shirt and a lunge. A lunge is a piece of cloth wrapped around your waist like a skirt. Simon bought a lunge in the market. His is blue with white stripes.

Staring in Bangladesh

In the Bangladesh travel book it said that it is very common for Bangladeshi people to stare at foreigners. We experience this all the time. It is also very common for crowds of people to form where you are standing. Here are four questions we are asked more than once every day: “What country are you from?”, “How long are you staying in Bangladesh?”, “What is your name?”, and “What do you think of Bangladesh?”

Everyone we have met has been very nice to us. They tell us how happy they are that we have come to visit their country. Everywhere we visit we have to sit and drink tea and eat cookies. The tea is very, very sweet. Simon and Danielle have drunk more tea in Bangladesh than they have in their entire life. They like all the sugar, and they like the cookies.
Not many people come to visit Bangladesh but they are missing a country with beautiful people.


  1. Hello DeWilde Family!

    Your time in Bangladesh sounds very interesting and different again then all the other places you have described. We have been curious about the wildlife you might be seeing there. Will you be updating your wild animal sightings list soon?

    Yesterday we had a fun time playing capture the flag behind our creek with a bunch of the kids from school, a belated birthday party for Rudy. We would have loved it if you could have been there too!

    Missing your company, and praying for you,
    Susan, Bill, Rudy and Nathan!

  2. Another wonderful adventure in yet another country with different food, unique clothing, interestign living quarters, and memorable experiences that'll stay with you forever. We just love "traveling" with you!

    Miss you!

    Love and Blessings,
    Jeff, Deb, Kristina and Evan

  3. Hi
    Pam John Danielle and Simon

    Reading your latest accounts brings back many memories of our visits to Kevin's homeland. Our boys were stared at and loved and they too learned to eat with their hands etc. The very dusty roads, crowds,dieselsmells,animalsand food are so familiar. It is wonderful that you are all able to have this special experience - a lifelong memory!
    Blessings on your adventures and keen to hear your first hand accounts.
    Much love,

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  5. I agree with most of your points, but some need to be discussed further, I will hold a small talk with my partners and maybe I will ask you some advice later.

    - Henry

  6. Terrific work! This is the type of information that should be shared around the web. Shame on the search engines for not positioning this post higher!

  7. First of all, I am happy that you actually took the trouble to post about your journey to is indeed a beautiful country ...and i am from there...

    I saw a post asking about wildlife in Bangladesh...well, its amazing ! our national animal is called the Royal bengal Tiger"...

    this link ... you're going to like it.... it also has shots of the wildlife... Enjoy