The First Day Exceeded All of my Expectations: Amy Nielson

The first day exceeded every expectation I had. Despite all the preparation they can never prepare you for the happiness you will feel. But let me tell you about the beginning of my day. It started out with my personal duffle bag arriving and finding my wholite exploded over everything. Good thing most of my zip locs were zipped tightly. After that I went into the bathroom and accidentally washed my only pair of contacts down the drain. But despite all that bad, nothing could have ruined excitement that I had about meeting my kids that day.  The drive to Kalsuin is about 35 minutes away from Chamba. It is a small, bumpy, windy, and busy road on the literal side of the mountain. And when I say on the side of the mountain, I really mean it. Not only are the roads full with cars but also people, donkeys, cows, stray dogs, and more people. It is very crazy. Once we got to Kalsuin we got to finally meet our kids. They were all dressed in maroon and blue. The cutest things I’ve ever seen. At first they were really shy with us but soon warmed up. They are the happiest and loving children I have ever met. All they want is for you to love them, and if you do that they will not leave you alone. It is the most wonderful thing in the world to be swarmed by all the children. For the first day of teaching I was a team leader so I just got to make the rounds and help whoever needed it. After a long day of teaching we walked up to their Ashram (orphanage) and played with them for two hours. It was so fun! They just love to play and play and play.  At the end we were very exhausted but it was the best day ever! As we continue to get to know each other I imagine it will get better and better! Most of them speak pretty good English but it just depends on the age. Madeline in my group says “The best thing was when I gave a little girl my scarf and she walked around like she was a princess”. Jesse says, “Wow, it was exhausting but amazing.” And Ethan says,  “Its cool, they are the happiest people I have ever met.” I could never explain to you how much I love these kids! They make me so happy and I am amazed at how loving they are to a complete stranger. I wish I could tell you so much more about the kids but it would take forever. This was the best day first day I didn’t ever imagine! I love India it is beautiful. I am so grateful for this experience and wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.100_2625 100_2629