Tuesday, 24 June 2014

23rd June

Today I joined up with Jennifer to meet a fellow academic from the US with whom she has been corresponding for a while. He then happened to be in Nepal so they have done a number of things together but it was my first meeting. 

We went off to meet a very respected lama called Lama Wangdu who was having a sort of open day where one can meet him and ask him a few questions, or ask for a blessing or ask him to divine if it was a good idea if one did this or that! One takes him a gift and he then blesses you by touching your head and shoulders with different Buddhist icons - I  am not up to speed on all of this. However I absolutely felt his warmth especially as he held onto my hand for ages as the three of us kneeled in front of him. We each gave him juice and a small
Monetary offering. I was very overwhelmed  by whole encounter. He did not speak English but Daniel is fluent in Nepalese and explained the answers to Jennifer's questions later. The lama beamed at me when I asked for blessings on the baby sister for Morgan who is due in late November -  YES - for those who do not know- Luke and Mel are having a baby daughter - so exciting and so much to be thankful for- so she has been blessed by a holy man. We were then given a packet with all sorts of things inside - far more than we had given him!! Plus a couple of tokens - one to put in our wallets, so they always have money in them! the other for power to put under our pillows when we sleep. 

We then had lunch at a restaurant overlooking the Boudha stupa - I had buff. - that is buffalo meat with vermicelli pasta- rather soup likebut very tasty and the meat tasted like stringy stewing steak! 

Daniel lives in a roof top apartment near the stupa so we walked there to enjoy some of the very fine tequila that Jennifer had brought him! Diluted for me, so a bit of a waste! 

Jennifer and I then went off to the BIN office to complete our evaluation forms and have our exit interview, they are very thorough and genuinely want to know what they should change to improve how they run and what they do. 

We had a long honest chat with Dinesh who thanked us for what we had done. He had had good feedback from the teachers who attended the first workshop so that was great! Once again such an enormous thank you to each of you who contributed so generously to my appeal for money. There is no doubt it will make a difference to the children. 

One of the volunteers showed me a photo she took two days after the workshop, in the class room where she had been volunteering. The activities were all set up on the low tables ready for the children!! 

So we were given certificates and then got a ride into Thamel with Akkal the VIN driver who was taking another volunteer to the airport. 

Jen and I then  had supper at a super restaurant she had been taken to by another friend who lives in Kathmandu . A great way to spend the last night before she leaves for Pokhara.  

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