Saturday, June 16, 2012

"It's never a right time to say goodbye"

How can I even explain my departure from India in such a way to completely cover every emotion and thought that I felt?  I admit, throughout our entire departure back to America, it had not really clicked inside of my head and it still has not.  Although, when it does, I'm sure I will be calling a few of my peers to share some memories with them.  Also, a factor that played into this I'm sure was the fact that my stomach was torturing me with pains.  Nonetheless, the moment that I really realized that it was completely over was when D-Money's Tibetan friends gave us the white (scarf?) for blessings - the same as they did when we first made it.  It was almost symbolic for "Welcome" and "Goodbye."  Then when D-Money gave us a hug, for me it felt like the most genuine hug ever - I felt love, compassion, and an actual care that he had for us.  Being in America has some really good perks that I am learning to become for thankful of, but I won't ever forget that it was India that opened my eyes to this.

p.s. Dear India, I shall return!

The Cliff Jump - Dun Dun Dunnnn

"3!.... 2!.... 1!... JUMP!!!"
That's all we heard while looking down at the water beneath us.  I find the power of our minds to be amazing - how it can trick us to believe an entirely different reality than what meets the eye of others.  Looking at the cliff from water level, it did not seem that far, but once up there (especially when it is your turn to jump) it seems like you are having an helicopter view of the ocean.  Though this may be exaggerated, it felt all too real when I was up there.  See, free heights are one of my fears.  So for me to go against every possible thought pulsating through my mind and body telling me "Don't do it! Reconsider!" and to still jump acted as an adrenaline rush and personal reward for me that I hadn't had in a long time. While in the air, I'm sure everyone can vouch for me when I say that it feels like time falls asleep for an extra 2-3 seconds.  After the successful jump, the water never sparkled so well and the ground never gave me more comfort.

The Slum Diamonds

For one of my blogs, I decided that I will give a portion of a new poem that I am working on for the amazing children that I met.  They are our futures:

I've seen them
Over 700 phoenixes with clipped wings
Nesting in the open so much that you could swear they were invisible
They still have the cremation ashes from their past life
covering their bodies that can easily be mistaken for sand & dirt,
Nonetheless, these ultrasounds still remember that they are light.
However, it's hard to shine for even these walking Nebulas
when their forced to live in a police owned land that was once a river bank, (the irony)
so every monsoon season -
the rain would melt their skin as their area was not only prone to floods,
but they - prone to drown...

I'll finish the remainder soon. Be sure to check it out at of our poetry shows on campus!

p.s. One day Maddy, Jami, and Boki will believe me about the crystals haha!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Finally Home

After riding on a plane for what seemed like months, we have finally arrived in America. It feels great to be home. The 25 day trip to India was an experience I will never forget. I am so glad I chose to go to India because I most definately learned so much about how other parts of the world live and how well of The United States really is.


Last Day June 8th

Today is our last day in India. It is such a bittersweet feeling to be going home. We woke up and went to the Akshardham Temple. Aside from the notorious Taj Mahal, I think this is the most beautiful temple we've seen. It is hard to imagine the time, effort, and money that went in to building this masterpiece. The precious jewels and gems were the most amazing part I thought.


Guy From Norway

Today I met a guy from Norway named O'Love. He is Dr. Mahar and Aaron's neighbor and he is always wearing Jockey underwear, and only Jocky underwear. Every morning he sun bathes on the roof top. Today was the first day I actually saw him wearing clothes and I've seen him the past five days. He randomly came up to me and gave me some news articles to read. He was a very interesting guy to say the least but I enjoyed hearing his crazy stories.


Missing India...

So it's only been about a day and a half since I left India, and I am already missing it, a lot. I am not just missing India in general, but I am missing the people that I have spent the last month with, 24 hours a day, non stop. It's hard to be thrown into that situation with people you don't really know at the start of a long trip, but the ending result is usually always good. I can say that even though I was set into a situation like this, the friendships I have forged with some of the people, I am truly grateful to have. I hope that they become life long friends, and life long friendships. It seems hard to explain to other people how I felt and what I experienced in India, really only the group I went with understands 100% what we went through. I miss those kids at Tong-Len more than anything else. It was the hardest thing to tell them that I might not ever be back. It is definitely a goal of mine to go back to India to see them again. One 11 year old girl holds a special place in my heart. Her name is Arti, and she wants to be a doctor when she grows up. I want to sponsor her, and help her in whatever way I can to help her graduate Tong-Len and move onto a school and become the doctor she wants to be. I can definitely say that I have grown and changed from this trip, for the better of course. The experiences and the people will always stay with me and be apart of me. All of us have a connection that no one else can even understand or experiences. I am MORE than happy to have been able to have this chance to go to India. I am happy to say that I had a BLAST, and wish I could have stayed longer even if I was ready to come home. I will miss India, and all it has/had to offer for me. One day I will go back, and relive some experiences I had there. Miss you India, and miss you guys in the group... Have a good rest of the summer and I hope to stay in contact with some of you! (: Thanks Dr. Maher and Aaron!