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Posts Tagged ‘volunteer’

I have stayed for 10 days at Kanda and it has been very interesting to live with a local

family in Uttarakhand. Kanda is a beautiful place and the trekking in the area was

wonderful. Also helping the community by teaching their childeren was great. The family

and local people were very friendly. They invented me at a wedding and it was a unique

experience. Staying at ROSE Kanda has been great to experience India in a more authentic

way.  Mattheu Colle Belgium collematthieu@hotmail.comMattheu writing feedback 06-06-2013 ROSE kids playing on  04-06-2013 Mattheu teaching ROSE kids 04-06-2013 Mattheu from Belgeam with the ROSE kids 01-06-2013 Bhany offering chocklet on his birth day 30-05-2013 Matthu teaching to ROSE Kids 30-05-2013

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I arrived in Kanda on November the 2nd after a long journey by bus from Nainital. Luckily I met Helen and Mark, two English volunteers, at the shared-jeep stand so I didn’t have to search for the right way to ‘the square, reddish house’. With my heavy back pack the road was a bit tough, but I made it safely. After 8.5 hours by bus, it was lovely to sit back in the sun with a cup of chai, chatting with Mark and Helen.

 

 Unfortunately, the second day was Helen and Marks last day. We went exploring in a field nearby and after that I joined them in the short walk to Kanda Market followed by the steep short cut track to Kanda. I was surprised by the hot temperature in daytime; short sleeves were enough, compared to the cold weather later on in the day.  In the evening we had a great meal, including a cup of lovely fresh, hot milk with lots of sugar.

 

Early in the morning Helen and Mark left and I had to sit down for a while with a swollen knee; I think I may have been a bit too enthusiastic walking on the bumpy roads and carrying my back pack. I took care of baby Anuska, I helped cooking, made chapattis as best I could and helped with cutting the grass, although I could not handle this task for a long time – it was hard work!

 

I noticed that I had no network with my cell phone here in the mountains and Internet wasn’t working, so I went into Bageshwar to inform my parents that I had arrived safely. As I knew they were a little concerned about their daughter alone in this big unknown country. I was glad I could take their worries away; the Verma’s are really welcoming and family-like.

I arrived back in time to join Mr. Verma in a celebration in the temple up the hill. I really enjoyed it, although I did not quite understand everything, even with the explanations of Mr. Verma.

 

On Thursday there was another event in a different temple; the temple was just opened and there was a meal for everybody that wanted it. Of course I loved to try it! I received a plate with fried chapatti, a cucumber-yoghurt sauce, vegetable curry and pickled mango (really nice!). After some shopping we went home and I helped Renu take care of the baby and I helped with the cooking. Mrs. Verma noticed that I was a bit cold and immediately she brought a shawl and heated some milk for me; a great example of the warm heartedness of the family.

 

I had planned to go to Almora on Sunday, but then Renu told me there was a special event happening in the Verma house; Anuska was now 5 months old and ready to eat solid food. Lots of great dishes were cooked and after some traditional ceremonies – for example Anuska writing on paper! – She could try a sample all of the prepared food which was served for her on a silver coin.

 

The day after I traveled by shared jeep to Almora and although the trip should only take 3 hours, it took me 5 hours to arrive there and then I had to walk for 3 kilometer uphill. Because of the delay I decided to stay an extra night in Almora. I stayed at the ‘Bansal Hotel’, recommended by the Lonely Planet firstly and now by me (it was a bargain!). During my trip I visited several temple’s, including the Kasar Devi Temple, but if I am honest I was a little disappointed by it. Almora is quite small, you can do some shopping, go on the internet, eat delicious tandoori chicken at ‘Soni’s’ and have a nice chat with the locals. Unfortunately, there was a strike on the day I wanted to leave and the next day I became sick which I think was due to some of the food I had eaten at a temple, so my trip took longer than I expected. But I would still recommend Almora to anyone, just for a night or two.

After some quiet days spent helping with the housekeeping and cooking we had to say ‘goodbye’ to Dipty and Anuska, because they were leaving to return to their own home 2 hours away from Kanda. I traveled with them to their house where we had a meal and a stroll through their village and then it was time to return Kanda. It was not easy to ‘leave’ them there, but we had two new people coming back to Kanda with us Jeetendr and Chandra so there would be enough company!

 

 

 

Ro

 

Rodée Veens

19 years, student University Social Work, HAN Nijmegen

Rodeeveens@hotmail.com

11/2/08 – 11/24/08

Holland, Netherlands.

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