Keepin’ it Real in India: By Katherine Andrew

Keepin’ it Real in India


Chamba is one of the most breath taking places I have ever seen. I have never seen a place with so much trash be so beautiful. There are huge green rolling hills with colorful houses placed in what would seem to be impossible locations. There is a turquoise river running through the town with white peaks in the background. Something I don’t think I will ever get used to in India is the drives. Lanes do not exist, horns are used for awareness rather than out of anger, and roads that you think that could only fit one car are meant for two, and fear is always a factor.  

The people in India aren’t necessarily America’s definition of beauty but they have a very big impact on my that I can only describe as beautiful. They seem to have so must culture and wisdom with sweet spirits. The Indian culture is very humble and modest so their beauty is often shined from with in which I find very powerful. 


I can’t remember the last time I woke up so excited to go school. The kids are all so loving and so stinkin cute. I have only spent 3 days with them but they act like we have been life long best friends. On the first day of school I wore my hair down and all the kids would stick their faces in it, smell it, and pretend to eat it. The next day I put my hair in a bun. Didn’t stop them. I was teaching a lesson and a 10 year old named Kritika yanked my bun to the side, stuck her nose in it, and then gave me a kiss on the cheek. Muskaan is the sassiest girl I have ever met. As she was doing the craft she was repeating “I am cute. I am smart” Eye rolls and hair flips are a package deal with this girl. Kartik is the village gangster he wears sunglasses everyday and doesn’t put up with any disrespect. 

One of my favorite things is all the kids call me “Didi” which means big sister in Hindi. I am so surprised how smart they all are. Today my lesson was counting so we worked with jump ropes. It was a boys turn names Aniket who is very small. Another boy went up to him took the jump rope folded it in half and gave it back to him. Some of the older ones would take my book and start reading it in English. They are so eager to learn and are filled with gratitude. 


This trip I have felt nothing but joy and I think that largely has to do with focusing on serving others. During our time in India we put all our energy into others and what we can do to improve their lives. I’m so impressed on how happy these children are even though they have so little. Just goes to show how little material things matter in determining our happiness. I love spending time with the team nothing but good times over her