Monday, March 20, 2006

Since when are dogs nocturnal?

Someone please tell me, are dogs nocturnal? I did not think so, but here in Nepal, they are. They bark all night long (I got used to it by my third night at my host family's home), and sleep all day. On my walk to the care center and back, I see dogs sleeping and sunning themselves - not barking, all day long! At first, I wanted to just wake them all up, but that would be risky - with rabies, and all. And plus, they never bother me now, so why should I interrupt their slumber? Hahaha!

So, life here for me is going well. I absolutely love the children. I have to clarify that the disabled care center is not really an orphanage. Some of the children are orphans, but the majority are disabled children who come from very poor families who live in remote villages of Nepal. Their families could not provide them with adequate care. The official name of the the center is the Disabled Rehabilitation Center (DRC), Nepal. A husband and wife team (Tanka and Urmilla Tiwari) from Nepal established the center in 2000. Both of them are disabled themselves. The facility is by no means state of the art. Hygiene is less than optimal by western standards, but appears to be adequate by Nepal standards and not causing serious issues. At least there is running water and soap in the toilet room. The children are well-disciplined and cared for. Nevertheless, they are kids after all, and they can get playfully rambuncious, with the occasional fight here and there! However, there is much respect, chores are shared, and always there is a helping hand.

I have only less than two weeks remaining at the center! Since all the children have been preparing for final exams, we have had no real play time, except for Holi. So I look forward to doing art projects and just playing with them rather than just giving homework, homework, homework! Even I am sick of homework! The week after that (first week in April), I will be doing some site visits with the organization that placed me at DRC. We will be visiting a rural school to teach kite-making, and in another, we will be delivering supplies. I will truly miss "my" kids. I feel totally connected to them and hope to have a lasting relationship with them through letters.

Thanks for reading the blog. It keeps me connected to all of you! Hey, did I tell you another holiday is coming up - Cait Dasain (pronounced, chite da-sign). It is the smaller version of the festival Dasain that happens in November. It is like Christmas to them, but the smaller one, is the mini-Christmas. It is celebrated for one day only, but big Dasain is celebrated over a number of days! See what I mean about holidays here in Nepal? Oh, and did I tell you, the Nepali New Year is coming up, too?

Namaste, Jackie


Anonymous said...

Jackie!! I cant believe time is flying by so quickly. But I am happy to hear you are having such a wonderful experience. So Doug will be there soon huh? Is there anything you need me to send with him? i.e. snacks, drugs? etc? :P
- Mary

Jilly & Mark said...

Jackie, Mark and I, just back from New Zealand, love the blogspot. So glad everything has gone well for you; what a marvellous thing to do - it will be so difficult to leave. Bye the way Scottish dogs and New Zealand dogs can also be nocturnal! Keep up the good work and have fun.
Jilly & Mark

Anonymous said...

Hey Jackie! Didn't I warn you that you'd fall in love? It's hard to believe your stay there is half over already. Enjoy yourself. Debby

shauna said...

Hi Jackie! I'm finally catching up on all of your great tales of adventure. Thanks so much for sharing your experiences with us! I'm proud of the great work you're doing - I'm sure the kids will remember you for a long time.

Enjoy the rest of your travels!