Day 2: Being a teacher and cooking your own food.
Today we went to the school to teach kids for the first time this trip. It was kind of early in the morning and we were all tired from a mediocre night’s sleep, and the long bus ride did nothing but add onto our lethargy.
As soon as we got to the school however, we were immediately thrown into the overwhelming task of teaching students. The kids were very energetic, and quite bright and eager to learn. It was difficult to manage at first, but slowly, we managed to fall into routine.
After an alright lunch of stale cheese sandwiches, a little bit of fruit and fried chicken, we set off toward the Seven Women center.
As soon as we got there, we were met by them all standing outside in the gate in a line. We exchanged hellos, or namastes, and then we proceeded to undergo a ceremony in which we all got red spots painted onto our foreheads, and yellow flower petals sprinkled onto our heads.
The place itself was very nice – we got a brief tour before the classes began. The primary aim of the center was to help any women in need of aid to get a job. This was done by providing them training in order to develop skills they would need in order to get a job, such as cooking, sewing or other services. Afterwards, the organisation would provide them with a job in order to earn money, which would be used to get a scholarship for their education so they can go to college, which I thought was very inspiring.
They provided us with a cooking lesson and a Nepali lesson. During the cooking lessons, we were assigned different tasks ranging from peeling potatoes to making soup. With the help of the women, we managed to help curate a dinner consisting of rice pudding, vegetable curry, tomato pickle, lentil soup and masala tea.
Dinner was finished at 4 pm, which was followed by a basic language lesson conducted in a pretty little room above the kitchen. We were taught basic words like welcome (swagatam), please (kripaya) and good (ramro), as well as vocabulary and sentences within categories like introduction, food & drink and numbers. I also learnt that yes is ho in Nepali, which means that technically my name is Carmen yes, which is fun.
The lesson went on for quite a while, and afterwards we bid the women farewell and headed back to our hotel just in time to watch the sunrise from the roof. That night, we raided the supermarket and played cards in our rooms and fell asleep exhausted, but content.