Wednesday, June 16, 2010


India is as amazing and mystical and fascinating as I ever imagined. It is as dirty and poor and traditional as is reported. And yet between the two I find hope. First, in the government that is a democracy and continues to right itself without overthrow and police itself for mass corruption. Second, in the emphasis placed on education, the strong work ethic, and self sufficiency in providing basic needs. This is an old, old country and, for it to be non-violent and people driven, change comes slowly, very slowly. But there is a constant striving for the next generation to do better.

Cities are cities and New Delhi has slums similar to China, with too many people living at a sub-subsistence level where there is little work. They were drawn to the cities like people in South Africa with the hope of riches. Many are drawn to America, too, and continue to provide for family out of the relative wealth they have here. Families are of utmost importance throughout the culture.

CCS has a wonderful system of housing volunteers together. We had a terrific group, as you would expect from like minded people caring for others.

India has much more to explore. I hope to go back very soon to see the tourist sites, eat more of the fantastic food, bask in the colorful women’s dress and the warm smiles of welcome.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Sweet Home Chicago

Arrived at 5am Saturday with no clue of the time zone, day or date. More reflections when I have more brains.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


The daycare teachers held a one day strike today, but the director of my school did not participate. They are getting a "huge" pay increase - from 1800/mo to 5000/mo. But they want more. It costs my teacher 1800/mo for her own 2 kids school fees. Plus 300/mo for the rent of the day care center - no water, toilet or heat or supplies. She is fortunate her family took her back in after her husband died.

Last trip to McLeod (last shopping? - oooo the airport!), last day at the day care center, last hike home...eventually last glimpse of India. For now. Of all the places I have been on mission work, this is the one I will come back to first.
Six of us - 1/2 the group - leave now and will be together in Dehli for a day. Then I think I am the first one to get on the 12:15am flight on Saturday and be in Chicago by 5am the same day!

Not sure about internet in Dehli. Reflections after I get home.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

wrappng up, winding down

The upside of 12 volunteers in one house with different jobs is that we come and go, from different shopping partners and dinner seating, and chatting at all hours or quiet if needed.

Then we also form real relationships with the teachers and especially the kids. Tiny steps are so big. They know blue, dog, cat, 1, peek a boo, Hokey Pokey and Bob. My work here is done.

The downside is I need to leave them all in the next day or so. Pictures are only memories.

Never fear: I will have lots and lots of "memories" to show you all!