Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The start of something wonderful

Hello! We are on day three in India and everyone is doing well here. We are slowly integrating into our new lifestyle and ways of the city. I wanted to take a moment and introduce myself, My name is Beth and I recently graduated. I studied Anthropology/ Sociology. I can't believe that I am actually seeing and experiencing what I have been learning about in the classroom for the last four years. I am volunteering at the Prem Dan house working with older women with various health issues. Walking to the house we have to briefly walk through a slum which is an experience in itself. I am really valuing all the work I am getting to do each day. The rhythm and motion of our mornings working is so unique to any other work I have done. Laundry is a carefully orchestrated dance. The whole precess is unique and makes me think how the next time I go to put it in a machine how simple and effortless it is. I find my interactions with the women to be very special as I smile and hold their hands. Not being able to understand what they are saying can be frustrating as I would love to hear their stories and be able to understand what they need, but gestures and smiles can say so much.
     It is interesting to also be a part of such a welcoming family oriented community of volunteers. Being new we rely on other volunteers to explain the work we will be doing, how to get to our site, and talk to throughout the day. I have met so many wonderful people and have also had the opportunity to speak Italian with a volunteer women who speaks no English. My Italian is very rough, but I have been slowly regaining it as I explain why I am here and how to get back to our street. I am grateful for the opportunity I have been given to come to Kolkata and do the work I'm doing. We have an amazing group and each  bring something unique to our dynamic.



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