All good things have to come to an end… On 22 - 29 February, a high level Fieldbase delegation - consisting of Rhys, Simon, and me (Christiane) - visited three project groups to get first hand insights into how they are doing and what they do (à THE LOOP).After experiencing Charlie 2's busy village life and Echo 4’s star-spangled basher tranquility in Tamil Nadu, we headed back to Karnataka to pay a visit to our Charlie 1 community project in Ghandenahalli. In this rural village of 7000 inhabitants, the venturers and PMs set up camp in the local primary school, wandering off to build eco-sanitation toilets during school hours. Here some firsthand impressions of PM and Project Medic Cate with some help of venturer Natalia Robinson:
Every morning crows and cockerels announce the arrival of the sun, interrupting the noise of the ceaseless prayers through the best damn PA system I have ever heard. Sometimes they play prayers over the top of each other resulting in an interesting mix (well, it sounds much better than Coldplay anyway).
The “watering holes” are not what we Westerners class as a watering hole; they are exactly what it says on the tin. The children make pumping the water look like fun, but after two jerrycans, I need a nap. Except a nap would be a deflating roll mat on the concrete floor.
Showering in a urinal is not that rank when your view is the glowing orange sun setting for the evening while you wash the cement from your body and hope the local children are not walking on the neighbouring wall trying to catch a glimpse of those weird white people. When walking through the village the shouts of the children’s “Hi, hi!” overwhelm you like a tsunami and their little bright faces just want to know your name and tell you theirs. And your father's. And your mother's. And your sister's.
|Day off / sports: Rafting refreshment|
|Day off / culture: Tibetian temple|
And now: Messages written whilst being surrounded by 1000 prying village kids:
|Also from Natalia|