Three Words that come out of my Mouth... by Sid Sager
There are three words that come out of my mouth whenever I think about this experience. I’m in love. I’m in love with the kids, our team, the food, the people, the streets, and the culture. I love it all! I’ve never been happier in my life. I don’t want to go to our school on Tuesday because I know that’s the last time I’ll see all my kids. It gives me the chills just thinking about it. My heart is so full, and my mind is crammed with images of their smiling faces. Kangna is the cutest little girl and is so smart. Geetangli has the biggest eyes and brightest smile. Ritika’s hair is in perfect little pig tails. Vandana is always smiling and laughing. Manju gets embarrassed very easily and tries to hide her smile. Rma, Jyoti, and Umesh are all siblings, and they have too much swag as they show up wearing beanies every day. Koran never smiles for pictures, and only makes funny faces. Amit has adorable eyes. Puran looks like a little man with cute chubby cheeks. Little Pankaj has the biggest eyes, and kind of reminds me of my cousin Scott. Older Pankaj is so sweet, even though he is quiet. Older Jyoti is very respectful and polite. Varna has beautiful hair and had a pretty blue dress on. Anshu is quiet, but so cute. Kanika likes to take pictures, but only came on a couple of the days. Raman has an awesome bowl cut and a big smile. Tabu has a perfect face. And I have the same amount of love for every single one of them.
Little Jyoti has mastered the art of stealing a camera. She will have you take a picture of her, ask to see it, and as soon as you show her, the camera is gone. It then gets passed around and I don’t see it until a lot later. But being able to look at the pictures they take is one of the most rewarding things. They take pictures of each other that I wouldn’t be able to take myself. A few of the kids have also mastered the art of selfies. However, they hold the camera very close to their faces. I am so grateful for all the pictures I have, because I will look back at them forever and ever.
Except my camera is broken as of today… On our adventurous hike up through the Himalayas, I was climbing up and over a rock and fell. So I can’t see anything on the screen, but can still take pictures. I just hope the kids don’t shun me because of it.
The people have not ceased to amaze me. Men fill pot holes in the road with a bunch of smaller rocks. Women carry big heavy rocks and bags on their heads. The children will sing and dance for us, and they have amazing voices. They walk every where, and live in the smallest places. It makes me realize how grateful I am for everything I have. I am thankful for my family who has always been there to support me. I am thankful for my school, and how much resources we are given to broaden our education to one day be successful. I am thankful for how I was raised and who I have become. I am so glad I’ve had the opportunity to come here, and just wish I had more time. I think it would be really cool to come back to Sunder Nagar in a couple years, go back to my school in Bagra, and see what situation the kids are in. I hope that after we leave, the teacher will allow the kids to play games—both fun and educational—for they seem to really like them. I hope that what we have taught will be able to help them learn more English, and be determined to learn more. I don’t ever want to leave them. I’m not going to say goodbye, which means I can’t come home… Sorry. I love them, and know that I always will.