My dear friends and family, January 20th 2010.
I suppose you are all shivering in the cold and I'm sitting on my bed in the coolest clothes that I have, sweating.
It's "winter" here, but it's still hotter than half our summer. When I left I was imagioning myself blogging all my profound
thoughts, pictures, and stories. Dreaming of blogging like my Aunt Mindy, but you all know thats not going to happen.:-P I
would love to blog more but we don't have internet where we are staying. Even Uncle Sonaraj (sp?) does not have internet on
his computer right now, so my only chance to post is when I get into town which is a few minutes drive from here. Course,
I can't drive here so I'm dependant on other people. I do have my laptop so I'm writing to you now, but I don't know how long
it will be before I can actually post this online.
This week (starting today in half an hour) is a conference. John Bjorlie, Steve Rusk and some men from another state in
India are going to be speaking. Even the Indian men from the neighboring state have to speak in English because they don't
know Tamil. Each state has it's own indian language. Us american kids are excited to go to church, cuz this will probably
be our only chance when it will be in English. We've decided today that we'll have to have our own "church" together to hold
each other up. At least do some devotions together.
There are a lot of interesting things here that we are trying to learn. We're having fun eating with our fingers. They
don't know what a fork is.(well, almost anyways.) In the resteraunts you get your food served on a banana leaf. No dishes to wash that way! Here
we have tin plates but thats it. The first time it was really hard, it felt strange to just dive your fingers into the
gooey food, and all the natives were laughing at us, but now we are pretty used to it. We're trying to live as they live,
and get over all the silly things...but one thing we refuse to neglet. We WILL use toilet paper!!!
Ben, Amanda, Sarah, and I live in a house with Sonaraj, and Sonacamarie. I have no clue the spelling of there names but
that is how it sounds to me. The children live in the same grounds in other buildings. There are 200 boys and 100 girls that
live here, and 200 hundred more that come for school during the day.Every single child is screaming their names to us and
trying to get us to remember them. *sigh* it feels impossible to me. I remember 1 name with a face. Melody. She is just
precious. One girl told me her name was Kavia. She has the most michevious smile. I remembered her well, but the next day
when I called her kavia she shook her head "NO sister!" and told me another name. I was very confused. Today when we were
helping the girls bathe, I discovered two girls that looked the same...hmm, I think there must be twins. The children work
together so beautifully. I didn't know it was possible to have this many children so well behaved. After being in Mexico
I was expecting chaos with this many kids. Everything moves so smoothly it almost feels like there is nothing for us to do!
Well not quite, we have been keeping quite busy, and will be more so once we settle in. Right now things are a bit different
with the conference and everyone else who is staying here.
Yesterday We had some shopping we needed to do and needed to get our money exchanged. A guy named William drove us and
Spurgeon came to be our guide. He had fun seeing how excited we got about the "simple every day things of life" and how
confused we got too! EVERYTHING is so different here, but I feel I could never explain it and I certainly could never capture
it on photo. We've been trying...but it's so vast, so impossible.
When I came here one of my greatest fears was never having quiet, never having alone time, but I don't think it will be a
problem. I pictured my life in the city, but we live in the country. Last night Ben, Sarah, Amanda, and I went for a walk in
the evening to unwind. the sun was setting and you could just look out over the wide fields and here and there a coconut tree.
I have to say, I had no idea how beautiful India could be.
There is so much more to say, but I can't explain it. God bless you all.
Hey there! January 22nd.
I don't know what you all were praying would happen to me when I got here, but they have deffenatly been pulling me out of
my confort zone! Nancy vollunteered Ben, Sarah, Amanda and I to sing together for the conference. Of course all the men
thought it was a great Idea. We weren't give a choice. So we sang. Sonaraj keeps pressing us to teach the children sometimes
or to give devotions with them. Ben came up with a skit he wanted to do. 20 minutes before it was to be preformed we were
told that the kids had already seen it a couple times so we should give them something new. Suddenly the pressure was on,
we had 20 minutes to decide what else to do, what to talk about...everyone seemed to leave it up to me;-P thanks guys. I
ended up giving my testimony. I was shy, which was kinda silly, it was only children (and the interpretor.) but it felt
like some huge audiance, then again, there are a LOT of children living here. It turned out for the Good. I think I'm
going to learn more being here than the children are learning from me.
With the conference going on we have actually not been spending that much time with the kids. we were told to focus on
the meetings and take this time off. Also some of us (not me.) are still trying to adjust to the time change. Poor Amanda
keeps waking up at 2:00 in the morning and not being able to sleep.
All of the young people around here are boys, so Ben is making all the friends.The culture here is so different and boys
and girls are so seperate, it's hard to get used to, but they invited us to play volley ball, so we gladly joined them.
I don't want to have all my posts so long by the time I get to the computer that you won't even be able to read them,
but I want to keep you well posted. I am hoping to soon post some pictures as well.
I love you all!!!!!! Love, Lydia
I wrote you today and it all got lost, so it's gone, but here's some random pictures.