Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Back to work in Bombay

Was out and about in town. all day to be more exact! K. and I had a very busy day planned meeting with the non profits that the newly arriving volunteers are going to work with. We called the first lady in the morning and she said yes, she still wanted to meet.

Back on the train, met up with a friend A. and K. jumped on along the way. It was nearly empty at 9am very different from the usual AM rush.

We met with the director of Sujaya Foundation at 9:45 AM, that took a couple hours discussing what these two boys from London will be doing over the month they are here. They are of indian orgin but have never visited India! Will be funny, two foreigners showing people of indian orgin around Mumbai : ) They will be teaching english to kids in the municipal school (public school, which is for children that live in slum areas).

Then we went to pay the rent, eat lunch with and get keys from landlord where these two boys will be staying, that was at 1 and was another couple of hours! sweet couple, the wife is a professor at a college and asked me to come and give a guest lecture about public health, HIV/AIDS. Then the third meeting was with the organization that M., a volunteer from the US, minnesota is going to work with for the month - Magic Bus
He is a physical education/health teacher with a master's in sport's science in states.

My final meeting was with A. a volunteer with Atma Mumbai - she is a girl from the netherlands volunteering with Atma, a dutch registered non profit started by h. an ausie gal and a. dutch gal. A. and I were putting together a proposal to request for funds for the salary for a teacher and sport and recreation equipment for students at this rural school a couple of hours out of mumbai. back in Rotterdam for her the birth of her sister's baby and is doing some fundraising. There is a foundation that wants to donate money for sports/recreation so we are putting together a proposal.
Before heading home, we stopped by a sport equipment shop to get the prices for soccer balls, basketballs, cricket and badmiton equipment.

Long day after a late night. now home waiting for get here, his flight was delayed leaving hong kong. So he will not be landing for another hour, I will try to stay awake.

It was amazing today in the city. Everyone was back to work as normal. N. the lady we met with first this morning was thankful we did not cancel. She felt that they [terrorists] want the city to shut down and cause chaos. The best thing we could do was to get back out there. I agree. I was a little scared this morning, I thought maybe we should stay home and do some work over the internet. I did some meditation, sat in sukhasana for a few minutes, focusing on my breath. Said a prayer and sent positive thoughts to those affected by the bombings.

I thought it out and felt that it was ok to get out and go to our scheduled meetings. I am glad we did. It was amazing to see the people get on with their day and also strange. Like K. said, the way people were out and about it almost seem like it did not happen. Are they used to this kind of thing, there were bombings here in 1993 and 2003. Then around the country there are bombings frequently, particularly the Kashmir region. But I have never felt unsafe, even today getting out.

Amazing strength and spirit in this city.

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