Courtney Ingalls

Courtneys picture We arrived in Chamba Town!! After two days of traveling and 9 lost bags, we are finally here! Lesson #1 that I have learned on this trip, don’t joke about things that you don’t actually want to happen. Last year I joked about getting lice, that happened. This year I joked the whole plane ride that my bag was going to be one of the ones that got lost… and it was. Everyone that didn’t get their bags was prepared with clothes and mostly everything they needed in their carry on. The girls also have to wear uniforms, which ps are kinda great, so not having clothes has been totally fine. We are hoping and praying that we will get our bags in a few days.

We pulled into Chamba late Sunday night and even though we were all sleep deprived from two full days of traveling it still felt so relieving to finally arrive here. Chamba feels like my home far far far away from home, but home none the less. I got to see some of the girls from the Temple Ashram yesterday; it was such a sweet experience to see the girls that I grew so close to last year. Hearing them say my name was so gratifying, they remembered who I was from a year ago. That probably brought the biggest smile to my face so far this trip! Seeing Kajal, Soni, Monika and Kritika was so exciting to me I can’t even tell you. Kritika is so shy and doesn’t ever really smile when she takes pictures but yesterday I worked with her all afternoon in the Advanced English workshop and we were learning about directions and she was doing so well I got here to have a fill conversation with me for about 10 minutes. I even got her to take a picture with me and smile. It might have been because the girls found out that I am ticklish yesterday, which was hilarious they all got in on tickling me to the ground. But a smile from Kritika is a smile none the less.

I am so beyond happy to be here. Getting here was a harder task then it was for me last year, but all in all I am beyond ecstatic that I am here in India. I absolutely love it here and am thrilled to be here. Our team has been so wonderful throughout this journey so far. I am so grateful to each and every one of them for all that they have contributed to this journey. There is still so much to take place in out journey this year but I can say one thing, I can’t wait to see how the trip plays out and see how everyone’s lives are changed at the end of the trip. Both the children we teach and the lives of the team members.