Day 16 Thursday: Another day at the Orphanage
Day had a normal start and I woke up with Badminton players sounding away behind the house. Morning tea and biscuits followed and then we got the children ready is usual. Kids had their breakfast like a well-trained Army and they were on the move soon after towards school. They were supposed to return from school at 1:00 and so no lunch was being prepared for them. We picked up our water and some more chocolates for the kids from store and returned home.
We got our work sorted out and then settled in for a day of reading and work expecting kids to walk in around 1:00. Time came and went and no kids. When you have one or two children in school, you worry and make calls. With eleven, when none return you know that they were coming at 4:00. Unfortunately, the lunch hour had passed and so they were coming home hungry. Nirmala Didi, as I have settled on called her, got some noodles with eggs ready for us and prepared plenty for them when they got back.
As predicted, the bunch came back at 4:00 but with no complaints. They hung around the kitchen but there were no chants for food or drama about being hungry or complaints about missing lunch box at school. I am amazed at their ability to just go with the flow. I wonder if we make r kids soft by over-doing everything and pandering since these are also normal kids.
Games started soon after little tummies were full and they settled in. There was no homework or anything else since the next day was off for them as their teachers were preparing their grades for the current marking period with results to be announced on Saturday morning which is usually their sole off day. Again, going with the flow.
Day was passed relaxed with board games and other fun things. Kids have been disappointed that my notepad doesn’t contain any games but they discovered MS Paint on the machine. Two youngest girls, Mamata (two) and Manita — tiny little things, discovered it first with their brother Dhan Raj. They each took turns and started out with simple rudimentary shapes and then colors and then more shapes and so on. All shapes were carefully kept away from others and paint had to be precisely right. This went on until they discovered the Heart shape in the paint toolbox. It was amazing to see that immediately both the girls started using the heart shapes in their drawing – Pink and Red of course – while Dhan Raj, stayed with boxes, stars and arrows. This went on for hours until battery was depleted and they wandered off to find something else to occupy their time. Not sure why girls gravitated to the heart shape – food for thought.
Kids got together after dinner for meditation and we used my Tibetan bells for the task. I enjoyed the moment. Afterwards I helped Sujan rewrite some of his website text and content of his emails so that the communications have a more professional touch. Sleep came soon and I went to bed.