Yellow Team Says Goodbye by John Cobabe

November 27, 2018 - 2018 Operation Bandhu

Yellow Team Says Goodbye.

John, Rylee, Kylen, Syrena, and Maren

The week has come and gone as fast as it could possibly fly. The only thing faster is the “Ta ta” rides to school in the morning. Horns and music blasting barely drowns out the laughter we share. Swerving through people, bikes, motorcycles, and trucks one thing remained constant; the smiles on everyone’s face. Celebrity status is about the only way to describe it. We decided to try and share a smile with everyone we saw and met and every time a smile was shared in return. Each one of my team members had the opportunity to share there personal style as they led the class for the day. Teaching is hard. Teaching 30 boys alone is harder. Teaching 30 boys who don’t speak your language is about as hard as it can be. But Syrena does it and did it well. Due to growing numbers each day we decided to split our morning villages classes into “manageable groups”. All eyes were glued on Syrena as she read “Rumble in the Jungle”.

After our morning class we took a tour through the homes and villages from our morning classes. They offer us food and sweets and we exchange our talents. At one house we had Kylen sing a solo, the bustling village fell silent to listen and locals gathered closer. It was something truly special.

Rylee never hesitated to take one for the team, always taking the first bite of a strange new food and even helping others finish off the nastiest of foods with a smile. The majority of the food we received was delicious. One sweets that they like to share with us is kind of like sponge cake the size of a doughnut hole. The little ball tastes like it is saturated in a Karo syrup concoction. Simply put they are nasty. We were down to one last ball Rylee popped the whole thing in her mouth and finished with a smile. Nothing thrown at her could bring her down. 

Maren was a little quieter in the cars but loud in the classroom. With great enthusiasm she captivated her audience and held there attention. Knowing just when and how to provide positive reenforcement the children knew they were doing a good job which kept them going. One of the most inspiring things I’ve noticed about Maren is she never complained once. A trait I cherish in her and strive hope to improve on in my own life. 

Wrapping up our last day in the villages and school is the hardest day of the whole trip. The pure love you receive from the people of India is surreal. We come here hoping to teach but instead we leave having learned. We learn to love. And to love selflessly. We learn just how important the work we are doing is; to the children, the women and people of India. We learn of our own blessings and fortunes. We learn of the struggles and sacrifice these women make for their families. Most importantly we learn, see, and know we are making a difference. A difference that is desperately needed and appreciated in the world. The gratitude expressed with such passion and sincerity will brings tears to your face. Leaving is the hardest part but we smile as we cry knowing we will be back again to be with our family in India.

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