Friday Already?!

Wow how time flies when you’re having more and more fun every single day. Here each day seems to be the very best and that things couldn’t possibly get any better…and then they do! I am in love with India. I am in love with the people. I am in love with the country. I am in love with the food. I am in love with the smells…well some of them. I am in love with all that I am learning. I am in love with it all!

Today was the best day yet! This morning we went to a colony where we provided a combination of medical care and love. Talk about some of the most amazing people! We were welcomed with the most energetic and loving praises from one man in particular. What a stud!  His energy lasted our entire stay too! He was fantastic!

He's definitely singing and dancing for us in that picture!

Bryan brought his ipod and speakers so that we could listen to music and dance with them. The first song he turned on was Jai Ho. Sometimes I like to think I’m Indian and cut out for a career on Baliwood so I try to dance like I have seen in the traditional Indian dances. Well I started to dance like this when this song turned on and our dear energetic friend saw me. He was elated! Together we started dancing—he would copy me and then I would copy him. It was hysterical! Then we would stop and clap, give each other high five, and shout “super” (one of the main American words most Indians know). Pretty soon our group expanded and we had ourselves one fun little dance party.

He loved teaching us!  We also most definitely danced the Macerana, the Mexican Hat Dance, the Hokey Pokey and so much more. 

Later, our dear energetic friend bonded with Bryan. He called him his “super friend”.

It was adorable. He was especially excited to learn how to dance like Bryan.
Thus Bryan taught him the smokin pistols (which our friend called revolvers).

He thought it was beyond hysterical.

Here's a video of the experience:

Oh, and don’t worry. Bryan also thought it the perfect opportunity to expose him to some good old gangsta rap. In fact, this is him "rapping" for us! Too funny!


After our dance party I played Jenga with some other colony members and volunteers. They were so cute! I have no idea how they managed to be so good with very few fingers! It was so impressive!

Then when it would fall they would laugh and laugh! It was a blast!

Another fun activity we did was play dominos. One man in particular had no fingers at all—thus he was very limited in what he could do. We discovered, however, that if we set up dominos so they could be knocked over in a chain that he could knock them over. He was adorable! He would roll his arms like a drum roll and count, “1…2…3…!” then he would karate chop into the first one. He was great!

The funniest part to me was the sweet woman we called “The Destroyer”. She found it hysterical to walk by just as we were almost done setting up the dominos and chuck something at it so it would fall before we were ready. Then she would laugh and laugh. Oh she was devious!  She might be little but she's a feisty one alright! 

I feel like I’ll be a terror of a grandma myself! I liked her a lot!

The colony we went to was just amazing! Some of them have been there for over 30 years, yet they still were so kind and happy. They were also so giving. One of the women was such a gem that she even gave us each bindis—the things you where on your forehead. Here this woman lives off of 300 rupies/month (about $6) and she is spending money to buy bindis for the volunteers! And you know, she does it because she truly loves the volunteers. All of the members at the colony love the volunteers! Their colony is quite far from society. Many of them are incapable of walking too, so they cannot even take the bus that comes every six hours. Our visiting the colony was therefore quite the highlight! They loved it!

Oh, I did have one other comical experience while at the colony. I drank rather a lot prior to coming so by the time I arrived (and after a nastily bumpy car ride too) I quite needed a restroom. One of the ladies at the colony offered to take me herself to the bathroom. She then took me to a wide open field and motioned that this was it.

I nodded that I understood and waited for her to leave. Only she stayed. I turned to see if I could hide behind a bush or something; there was nothing. She again motioned that I just squat right where I was. I think for a moment she thought I had no idea how to use a field as a restroom.  Finally I realized privacy was not an issue to her so I just went and she sat there waiting ever so kindly. I think she thought it was good hospitality to wait. It was most awkward. So awkward in fact that I tried to keep myself covered a little too much. Let’s just say I may or may not have slightly urinated on my pant leg which I strategically covered by rolling up my pant legs into capris for the remainder of the day. Sick!  Hahahaha. Too funny! We all got a good laugh out of it. I hope you appreciate my honesty. Feel free to laugh. A lot…I did and do!

Another cute colony story is of the most adorable lady. The lower parts of her legs have been amputated due to her intense leprosy so she has a cart that is about three inches off the ground that she rolls around on. She has a sincere love for birds so each day she rolls down to the well to draw water for the birds.

She rolls back with the water in her lap and places it under a tree. Then she rolls down to finely grind rice so not to choke the birds. She then again rolls back and places the food next to the water under the tree. The whole process takes her close to an hour to go back and forth but 45 feet. In the picture below you can see the bird food and water in the front and the well in the background.  45 minutes!

What a dedicated and loving woman. It seems to me that it would be so easy to just say “It’s too hard” or “Why should I care?” But she does care. She loves. And she serves daily in her own little way! What a phenomenal example.

We left the colony much too early! Though it was already the afternoon, time went so fast that it felt as though we’d only been there 30 minutes! Just before we left the sweet energetic man gave a closing speech and blessing.  He and everyone thanked us repeatedly.  It meant so much to them; it meant so much to us.  As we drove away they all waved furiously after us! Love them all!

Oh and check out the baby monkey we saw on the way home!

We see lots of monkeys...but not so many baby monkeys! Too bad I cut off the mama's head!

When we arrived back at the colony we had a short period of down time during which I caught up in my journal. We then went over to witness some of the children’s field day. They were playing a large game of Bad Minton and two games (segregated by sex) of “Kamate”—ultimately a game of tag and tackling. I still don’t fully get it. All I know is it was hysterical watching not just boys tackle each other, but girls. The whole while chanting “Kamate! Kamate! Kamate! Kamate!” In the United States it was a lawsuit waiting to happen. Here, it was fantastic!

We then had playtime. Today was great! Bryan brought over his ipod and speakers and we had quite the dance party! The kids loved the song, Jai Ho, and all Michael Jackson (particularly “Black or White”) the best! Now, let me explain this dance party. All they wanted to do was copy what I did, which ultimately meant an hour and a half of serious aerobic workout in the heat and humidity! What a fun and funny workout! The funniest part for me was that in all reality I can’t dance for the life of me. Still I was far from inhibited in my “dancing” and luckily the children loved it. We did lots of disco, shopping cart, kicking, spinning, and a lot of other sweet dance moves. Pretty sure I looked a lot like Napoleon Dynamite! It was also cute: after dancing Bryan just sat with the kids and listened to music! 

And please look at this sweetheart! 

I just love these kids!

At dinner we had quite a treat! Each night we have a mini devotional. My wonderful uncle, Sterling, gave the devotional tonight. For his thought he actually played his guitar and sang along. The name of the song was “Hip hip hooray”. It was beautiful! The chorus:

Hip hip hooray for now I’m doing fine
I’m sitting back enjoying all the time
Three easy words are all it takes to say
I’m enjoying life hip hip hooray!

Essentially his thought was enjoy today. You know it’s so easy to think “someday I’ll enjoy life”. Or “I’ll enjoy life when…” But the best way to enjoy life then, is to enjoy it now! If you don’t enjoy life now, you won’t then either. Isn’t that a great thought? I loved it! Sterling has such a great talent! Loved it!

After dinner I walked Bryan back to the volunteer compound as he hasn’t been feeling too hot with the heat and all. On our way we encountered one of the guards who had just killed a most poisonous cobra! Naturally we had to hold it! The guard kept saying he killed it with his “Moses staff”. Haha. I was particularly proud of Bryan; he LOATHS snakes! Still he held the snake! Good for him!

Once I got Bryan situated in his room with a fatty bottle of Gatorade I headed back to put the little buggers to sleep. When I arrived, as happy as they were to see me they were unbelievably sad that Bryan couldn’t come. When they heard he was sick they felt so sad that they insisted we “Make video for Bryan!” So for the next while the boys and the House Mother insisted I film them as they spoke, danced, and sang for the camera. After each performance we would then all watch them together; they thought it was amazing! Ha! Too cute! Please appreciate!

The boys then did a few dances for him too!

Even their sweet house mother danced while the children sang!

This is a pyramid they made for him! 

And some other formation they knew Bryan would love...

Aren’t my little boys the cutest things ever?!

And alas they studied.  For a minute...

Oh I love them!  Ps: because they danced for Bryan they informed me that on Sunday night Bryan and I have to dance for them.  Haha!  You better believe we will! 

It is going to by hysterical!

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