Wednesday, July 25, 2012

I know I keep saying how much I love it here, and I really truly do, but at the same time I was thinking today (weak moment) how sticky, smelly and gross it is here.  However, there is beauty everywhere, even in the sticky, smelly, gross things.  I just have to choose to look for it.  Attitude is everything, right?
Today we were doing community service (aka: construction) in one of the leprosy colonies.  It was hard work.  At my breaking point we were asked to carry bags of cement.  100 lbs!  Dad, I was DYING.  I don't know how you do it!  And to still paint the picture for you, it's mating season here for the flies and the air is just thick with them.  So nasty.  Nonetheless, we were able to meet some beautiful people and serving them touches my heart in a way nothing else ever has (well maybe except for special ed).  It's an indescribable feeling.  A combination of sheer exhaustion and pure happiness.  During my physically exhausted state today I just kept thinking of my favorite lady, Sister Hinckley's quote, 

“I don't want to drive up to the pearly gates in a shiny sports car, wearing beautifully, tailored clothes, my hair expertly coiffed, and with long, perfectly manicured fingernails.
I want to drive up in a station wagon that has mud on the wheels from taking kids to scout camp.
I want to be there with a smudge of peanut butter on my shirt from making sandwiches for a sick neighbors children.
I want to be there with a little dirt under my fingernails from helping to weed someone's garden.
I want to be there with children's sticky kisses on my cheeks and the tears of a friend on my shoulder.
I want the Lord to know I was really here and that I really lived.”
― Marjorie Pay Hinckley

Today I've got perma dirt under my fingernails, blisters on my feet, and a huge possibility of lice in my hair (long story of a lice bugs on my bed) but hey-- I'm really here and I am really living.  At least I feel like I am.  
And I am happy.

We went to the art school today.  I bought some art painted by people that live in the colony and have leprosy.  I'm so sad that I didn't get a pic with the artist, the artists of the paintings I chose weren't there.  Dang :(  But still, so cool!  It was a fun experience.  Just a simple little art school with cows mooing feet away from their stations.

The Art School.
1/3 of the proceeds go to the artist, 1/3 to the school, 1/3 to the colony.
So cool.

Just a teaser :)
I don't want to show you the paintings till I get home!

See?  Cows!

My second favorite thing about today was stopping to get Porota!  Oh my goodness.  It's the most delicious thing I've had here.  BY FAR.  It's like flakey tortilla type things, with an egg/onion/omelet thing and dipped in sauce that to me tasted a bit like coconut korma.  So good!  Total cost? 40 rupees (less than $1).  Gas station thick with flies eating experience?  Priceless.  I just kept thinking how American Amy would not even be able to handle it!  Indian Amy?  Ate 3 without purelling.  Something is carrying me through... it's amazing.
We eat everything on a banana leaf.  How cool is that?

Other items of business:
-Thank you for your comments!  Please keep them coming!  And for all you mystery readers, just know I keep stats on this thing so I know you're out there!  Please feel free to comment!  And to end, a special shout out to Meredith from the block!  Your comments made my morning bright :)


  1. Wow I am impressed, no purell? You are becoming just like one of the locals!

  2. Didn't know flies have a mating season...thanks for that image! No Purell! I think you can say you've changed drastically! I miss you're face so so much but I'm glad you are working your precious butt off and getting all good and dirty! Let's face it you have a lot of dirt to catch up on.

  3. P.s. can you face time me again?

  4. Parota truck stop. BEST eating experience of my life. Yeeeeeahhh!