My schedule is really picking up now…!
Back in Shillong already! The Unitarian Union of Northeast India’s (UUNEI) Orphanage Management Committee (OMC) had a meeting this morning, so I caught a ride from Kharang last night. The past week has been very busy indeed!
We’ve had three big developments in our AMBCV construction:
- The monsoon is passing! The last couple of days brought thunder storms, but earlier in the week was actually quite sunny. Nangroi took Sharmila and I on a tour of the region around Kharang, showing us some wonderful rice paddy scenery. For the orphanage construction, no more rain means an increased pace!
- Monday afternoon, Khlur and I visited the S.O.S. Children’s Village of Shillong. S.O.S. is an established, internationally renowned organization, and we had a great tour and meeting with the staff there. The director has offered to help us with figuring out how to conduct our “auntie” interviews and give them training! I’m so grateful to her, and excited about a potential relationship with S.O.S.
- The OMC had its second meeting — my first, though — this morning at Kong Karuna’s home. We talked about local donations, possible government funding, and brainstormed how we’ll select the children and “aunties” for the AMBCV. Very productive meeting, and we’ll be meeting again in two weeks to make final decisions on all of these issues before Dee and the rest of the pilrimage group gets here.
(An unimportant note: The sheer number of acronyms employed in this blog post brings me back to my days at Carnegie Mellon. Oh, tech schools!)
In other AMBCV news, our final long-term volunteer, Jon Williams from Pittsburgh, is joining us later this week! I actually didn’t meet him in my time at First Church (he’s just graduated from high school and I was involved in the college youth group), but I’m excited to meet him here and have another American coming here to work on the Children’s Village. … We’ll have Sharmila’s Canadian pride sorely outnumbered😉
I’m also excited for the arrival of the pilgrimage group (including my parents!), Suzanne Reitz’s family, and potentially Devika from Manassas, VA (see the “Interested in Helping” sidebar). I think at this rate, Kharang will have to open a volunteers’ guest house!
In Kharang news, India celebrated “Teachers’ Day” yesterday, and the Kong Barr Secondary School had an all-day celebration full of dances, songs, and skits! I’m so glad that I went, and I took plenty of photos. I hope all members of First Church of Pittsburgh — the school’s partner church — takes a look once they’re up!
On the not-knowing-the-Khasi-language front, I was able to pick out some Khasi words by reading the Khasi Gospel of John. I’ve already translated in Greek, so why not now from Khasi? I do need to learn the language somehow, my spotty Hindi just doesn’t cut it in Meghalaya.
Finally, I’m working from Banjop’s newspaper office this afternoon, so photos are being uploaded to Flickr in a somewhat quick manner. Maybe you all will see all of my photos from Delhi by tonight :) I’ve also added new links on the right side of the page to two friends who are also volunteering abroad: Mike Dreyfuss in Ghana, and Jenn Altman-Lupu in Nepal and later Israel. Check them out!
What a rambling post! Thanks for keeping up🙂