kal milenge (see you tomorrow) -Samey Snell

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Let me start off by saying that I never thought you could count so many miracles on your hands within six days. One being that, HI TO MY FAMILY AND FRIENDS- i am alive. Another being that we lost no baggage on our crazy travel schedule. And another being that although we have come close to crashing, we haven’t and we’re all getting used to the backwards driving. But who cares about our physical safety? You all might, but India doesn’t. India cares about your heart and the way you look at everything. And so far, India has me in love; with the people, with the scenery, with the bows and “namastes,” with the colors, with the exhausted feeling.

My school, Bakhani, is incredible. We cross a bridge that has you doing a quick “Hail Mary” every time you cross it and we end in a town of wide-eyed natives and kids with the biggest hearts. The first day at school, the kids were so unsure of us and why we were there. But now, they are more than comfortable with us to the point that they are starting to get as wild as all the stray dogs in the streets. At first, the kids weren’t too sure of me. Actually, let me put this realistically: they wouldn’t let me look at them without looking away, and not in an embarrassed way, but in an “you’re creeping me out” kind of way. But yesterday and today, my hands were occupied by the cutest little girl, Sameena, and another little girl, Bono. And while we’re on the subject of Bono, she got so nervous during her eye test yesterday that she peed her pants and while she was trying to go to wash it off, i grabbed her hand to comfort her and found myself covered in warm, wet pee. You wouldn’t believe how incredibly beautiful all the kids are here. Oh, and one last thing regarding school. I can officially say that I have been flipped off by a cute little boy in Chamba and also say that I embraced it with laughter.

The school is incredible, as mentioned before, but our ashram, Melha, beats all. It’s close to our school, so we don’t have much resting time, but when I get there rest is the last thing I want to do. All boys, thirty of them, and you wouldn’t believe how much energy and love they can all hold at once. And, by the way, the boys favorite game is down by the banks, you know, the game where you sit in a circle and slap hands clockwise until the song stops and then you’re out, but only because they think we are saying “hanky panky.” I don’t want to say I have favorites since all the boys love each and every one of us so much, (especially me, these kids actually love me) but today I declared a favorite. A boy named Ripen. He always wears the same little blue and green sweater and his hair is well do for a good wash, but his heart is so big and even with broken english his jokes and funny faces come across as familiar. Today I had nearly eight boys dog-piling me, and Ripen came over and said, “Hey, leave her alone. She’s my big sister; dede.” At that moment I felt warmth overcome me and I felt as if I was loved by this boy, and not just a casual “I love you,” but a love that I have never experienced before because of how incapable conversation between us was and how short our relationship had been. As mentioned earlier, I love everything here more than I ever thought my heart had room for.

But since I am in India and we are always embarking on an adventure, I will end here. As promised, a shout out to Nate, I haven’t thought about you that much, but when I do, it’s good thoughts. To my mom and dad, you have no idea how thankful I am for you two and all you have provided me with, especially your love. To my sister, don’t have Scarlet until I get back, but if you do, make sure she comes home in the outfit I bought her. To my noodle, take a second today, or tomorrow, to put down your game controller and smile because you are loved. I miss everyone, but I have to admit that I may never come home.

Goodnight and goodbye, kal milenga, I love you.

Samye