OK - Time to get to work
Mumbai Travel Blog› entry 26 of 37 › view all entries
Typically I hate orientations. They are long, boring, redundant, and irrelevant. But the 4 day AJWS meeting was actually a pleasant surprise. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting all the volunteers- Murray and Sylvia �" married 54 years and at the age of 78 were doing their second AJWS volunteer work, Mark and Dianne �" just married were traveling the world doing volunteer work ~ and just came from Ghana, Africa, Ron and Debra �" another couple who were sweet, intelligent and into the whole meditation thing too. That left Debra # 2 and me. Yes we were the only single people of the volunteers. Debra is an amazingly charismatic woman who somehow managed to spend 13 years at one job before quitting and taking her first trip to the developing world through AJWS ~ super courageous. Then there were the AJWS staff �" Will, Sam, Anna, and Sunita.
While I loved the meetings, I grew tired of the long days after day 2. We started at 9:00 and finished around 5ish. Usually we all had dinner together, so that did not leave much time to explore Mumbai, which I had hoped to do. But the meetings were catered with coffee and snacks, so I was a happy camper, fighting off dozing with cookies and black sugar-filled coffee.
On the second to last night, Debra and I ventured out to town alone.
On Thursday, I met Cynthia, my NGO representative. I instantly fell in love with her �" she was so warm, laughed easily, was motherly, compassionate, intelligent, and passionate.
The last evening, after a dinner with all NGO representatives and staff, Mark, Diane, Debra, and I sat on the roof watching Mumbai. Mark, Diane, Murray and Sylvia were to work in Mumbai. Ron and Debra 1 were headed to Chennai (Tamil Nadu), Debra was going to Orrissa (the poorest state in