Thursday, 8 February 2007
India, part 1
Here we are with a teaser of what we've seen so far, give me some time and there will be much more to come...
It's odd, looking out the large picture window... covered in bars as is any window that opens around here... and watching the children playing in the dust with their homemade cricket equipment. These are just the children who are living at the orphanage. They are so content with just the simple things of life. They have almost no control over their lives, other than the effort they decide to put into schoolwork and the attitude they take about things. Their lives are for the most part controlled for them. And while here we find ourselves very much in the same place, we have to follow the schedule we are given, and are expected to change our plans with a moment's notice, no explainations. It can be easy to become bitter or to decide to refuse the requests made of us. At the same time, it is very much a learning process about just how independant we are. Learning to accept direction and develop new habits that involve a lot of discipline. Learning to serve and let ourselves be served.
Wanna hear some nasty facts of life around here? Beef... doesn't exist, and if they tell you that's what it is, you'd better hope it's water buffalo. Though, really, if you watch the water buffalo, or the cows for that matter, as they roam at will through the streets, eating garbage, climbing into garbage bins, wading through the black water (please don't make me explain the sewage system, it's bad enough having it running by), you might be leary to eat any meat. The pigs go wading and wallowing in the black water, and are very much despised and avoided around here. The goats wander as well, but seem to stick to the brush at least a bit more than the cows. Roosters etc can be seen in front of random dwellings. Dogs are everywhere, and you need one to protect your home and keep away stray dogs or theives. Cats are random, you really need to search for them. These are the main animals wandering the roads at will. The dust by the roadside is a paler brown than the red dirt you see in the gardens. This dust gets everywhere, especially as the vehicles kick it up and the powerful ocean breeze whips through the valley. The dust, as far as we can tell, is made up mostly of decomposed dung of all the aforementioned animals. Needless to say, we scrub our feet every night before bed.