Thursday, November 14, 2013

Nov 2nd: Thank you and Goodbye

Who knew when we boarded the plane 2 weeks ago full of anticipation and excitement of the unknown what a truly rewarding and unforgettable experience we would have. We were welcomed into this amazing community with open arms, friendly greetings, smiling faces, and stares of curiosity. Over the 2 weeks we shared many laughs, communication breakdowns and breakthrough’s, cups of masala tea, rest times, lots and lots of photos, learned from each other, celebrated with each other, shared each others culture and built friendships that will last with us forever. Through everything we were able to work together hauling rocks, passing and lifting cement to build a dam that will help the community of Akola for years to come. We are forever grateful to everyone for making us feel so at home. We started our journey as strangers here and we are parting ways as friends and family looking forward to the next time we meet again. We will carry India in our hearts with us long after we have left this magical country. Thank you to my amazing, compassionate, hard working, funny, patient team. It was an absolute pleasure working with you and sharing this experience with; thank you for your commitment to this project and inspiring me. Thank you to Sahyog, the community of Akola, Mithu, Rajmahal Hotel, Parthvi, Jaiwana Havali, DWC, our friends and family for supporting us and everyone who made our experience in India so memorable.

Jen Baillie
Team Leader
India, October 2013

Friday, November 1, 2013

Nov 1st: Reflections on our Team

Halloween in Akola was a great day. We hauled large stones in our rock taxi for 2. Very very large stones take four people. We have made many friends now and everyone sat quietly as we handed out stickers candy and trail mix. Our hosts supplied the chia tea.

Each member of our team has worked very hard. Jen, Ashley and Justin have really bonded with the kids. Duck duck goose, photos and card games of go fish keeps everyone; adults and kids laughing. Victor and Lonnie have left but our hosts still ask about them. Rebecca and Wray compete to carry the largest stones, Freda and her new friend Laxmi, both daadis, grandmas, never stop and without a doubt have carried the most rocks. Bill and I take turns with Parbhu on the rock taxi. We all have fun with our hosts on the ‘conga line’ passing ‘C’ment person to person sometimes as far as 50’. We have been so graciously been accepted by our hosts and have taken tea in many of the villagers homes.   

The dam is almost done but our friendships will last forever.

Freda teaching the kids origami. 

                                            Jen with the kids.

Russ Carmichael 
DWC Participant 
India, October 2013