Tata from India

Our last night in India, and so we come to the final post.

This morning, a few of us got up for 6:00 Mass at the mother house, and then went on to Nirmal Hiraday, the Home for the Dying. Although at times it was trying and uncomfortable, the sense of satisfaction at the end of our shift made it worthwhile.

Except for a bit of last minute shopping, today has mostly been spent packing largely inflated suitcases and preparing for the 24 hour (!) marathon that is our journey back to England. We leave you with a few last photos from throughout the trip.

Cow

Monkeys

Washing machine poster

We also have a short story for you.

One day, an Englishman was in India, and approached an Indian man cutting the grass. The Englishman had got a bit lost, and so asked, “What is the name of this town?”. Now, the Indian man didn’t speak very good English, and assumed that he had been asked “When was the last time you cut the grass?”. He answered “Kol cutta”, meaning “I cut the grass yesterday”, and this is how Calcutta got its name!

Thank you very much for sharing our journey, and make sure you check back to see all of the photos from our amazing adventure!

My India is Great!

To read the full article and to see / make comments click here

Pilkhana

Pilkhana

14 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

We had a great dinner last night, not with Steve Waugh but with Tony Fehon, a business man from Australia who was at Udayan with Steve. The night was fantastic, but we were all suffering a bit this morning as we came down for breakfast.

Asha Niketan

Asha Niketan

13 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

We got up early (5:00!) this morning to attend 6 o’clock Mass at the mother house, just a few minutes from our hotel. All of the Sisters were at the Mass, as well as volunteers who would be doing the morning shift at any of the homes run by the Missionaries of Charity. Some of us will also be attending this Mass on Tuesday when we work at Nirmal Hiraday.

Udayan and Steve Waugh

Udayan and Steve Waugh

12 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

Having been promised a late start this morning, we stayed up late last night drinking (only kidding!), but it turned out that our route to Udayan was barred by an illegal Communist rally, and so we had to get up early anyway! The things that happen in India!

Home for the Dying

Home for the Dying

11 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

This morning we were visited by Gaston Dayanand who was the inspiration for the hero of ‘City of Joy’, the book written by Dominique Lapierre and translated by Kathryn Spink. The movie starred Patrick Swayze and is set in the slum in Kolkata that we are going to visit on Monday. Gaston was here for the editing of his book which tells of his experiences since arriving in India over 30 years ago. He gave us some insight into his thoughts about the nature of developement and what he is trying to achieve in Kolkata and its neighbouring villages.

Udayan

Udayan

11 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

Although the children at Udayan wake at 5:00 am, it was 6:30 before they found where we were sleeping and woke us up with cries of ‘Good morning!’. We had breakfast, and then played with the children before finishing setting up the computers.

Udayan

10 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

Although the children at Udayan wake at 5:00 am, it was 6:30 before they found where we were sleeping and woke us up with cries of ‘Good morning!’. We had breakfast, and then played with the children before finishing setting up the computers.

Udayan

Udayan

9 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

We write to you this evening from a computer at Udayan.

This morning we got up early to go to Mass and to receive the Ashes from Rev. James Stevens, the founder of Udayan. As well as running Udayan, he is also a parish priest at a church in the heart of Kolkata, just a few minutes walk from our hotel.

Udayan

Udayan

8 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

After eating a substantial breakfast at the hotel, we set off for Udayan. It took just over an hour to travel through the mayhem of Kolkata, with the anticipation of our arrival building throughout the journey. We were not disappointed when we pulled into the welcoming gates and were greeted warmly by some of the older girls with garlands of flowers.

Arrival in Kolkata

Arrival in Kolkata

7 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

We arrived in Kolkata this morning after an eventful train ride from Varanasi. Although we were warned that the journey could take significantly longer than timetabled, we rolled into Kolkata only about an hour late. The train wasn’t too uncomfortable and we all got some sleep, once we had braved the trip to the toilet (an adventure in itself) and fought off the mice that were running about in the carriage!

Little Sisters

Little Sisters

6 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

We woke up this morning and attended a Mass at the local cathedral which was said in Hindi. The music was absolutely fantastic, with an Indian drummer, singers and even some dancers who led the Bishop down the aisle at the start of Mass.

A trip on the Ganges

A trip on the Ganges

5 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

Varanasi

6.30 am found us in a boat on the Ganges in time for the sun rise over the river. It was an awesome sight and nothing we had been told about it would prepare us for its splendour.

Varanasi

Varanasi

4 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

We arrived by air in Varanasi today, and after settling into our hotel, went down through the town to the banks of the Ganges. We will be visiting Mother Ganga at sunrise tomorrow when apparently it is breathtakingly beautiful.

Taj Mahal

Taj Mahal

3 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

This morning we went to Mother Teresa’s Shishu Bhavan, her home for abandoned babies. Some of them had been left in dustbins and were very tiny. They were rescued by the Sisters and are now cared for at the home until they are around six when they are moved to a different house run by the Sisters elsewhere in Delhi. We stayed and played with the toddlers for a couple of hours and found it all very moving.

Kerry feeding baby

Indian Culture

Indian Culture

2 February 2005 | Read full article and comments

India is incredible. For the past few days, as well as recovering from the change in time and the long and exhausting flight, we have been exploring the sights, smells and sounds of Delhi.

Departures

29 January 2005 | Read full article and comments

It is with great excitement that we leave for India tomorrow. Some of us have been organised and are packed, others are still throwing stuff in their suitcase and probably will be until the last second. I think I speak for many of the group when I say that I don’t think we can believe we are off to Udayan: the place we have heard so much about and worked so hard for.