What’s up America?? It’s Neal chiming in.

DCIM100GOPRO It’s official - India is the most magical ghetto I have ever encountered. The culture is one of a kind. I am surrounded by some of the most simple and humble people that I have ever met. The journey here was an adventure but the town of Chamba is where the real action has been. After waking up and taking a shower by bucket, we gathered together and prepared our lessons for when the temple girls would arrive. We then ate a speedy breakfast and after only seeing the girls for a few short minutes, I was asked to accompany 3 other members from our crew and volunteer at the hospital.

Upon arrival to the hospital, Brayden, Shawnie, Lucy and I were introduced to the head doctor who then assigned us to other districts within the hospital. I was assigned to a doctor who introduced himself as Sunny. We spent the next couple of hours talking with patients and examining blood samples. He taught me about some of the current diseases and health problems the people of Chamba were encountering. While sanitation and cleanliness lacked throughout the hospital, never have I felt so much love from a complete stranger. I talked with Sunny about his family and he was quick to invite me to his home this Thursday to celebrate his daughters first birthday. An incredible invite that I wish I could’ve accepted. I told him if it were possible, I would come.

Our shift of volunteer work came to an end too quickly and I had to say goodbye to my new friend, Sunny. I didn’t want to go – I felt at home. As I walked out of the hospital, I felt uplifted. My eyes had been opened as I saw how humble Chamba’s medical circumstances actually were. My mind had been enlightened by some newfound medical terminology. But most importantly, my heart had been touched by Sunny’s friendship. Day one and I am already in love with the beauty and simplicity of the people of Chamba.

-Neal Smith