Day 13 – Nepali fond farewells
Sadly, today is our last day in Pokhara. Tomorrow, we return to Kathmandu on the 7.30am tourist bus and I am bracing myself for the 7 hour journey through the Nepalese hills once more!
Today has been a day that I will never forget. After a fun filled morning spent with the little ones at Ward 6, we helped with the lunches as normal and were surprised when the teacher Tarra asked us to wait until after the children had eaten, before leaving. Most finished quickly, but there were a few slower eaters, mainly the very young toddlers. We helped to feed them and then the teacher lay them all down for their afternoon nap.
We hung around, not really knowing what to do and suddenly a man appeared with a silver tray, containing red tikha spot powder and said a little prayer over us. He then rubbed the red powder on our foreheads and presented us with a cream silky scarf, which the teacher loosely tied around our necks. It was the most humbling thank you and farewell I have ever experienced in the world and tears fell as I hugged the teacher’s goodbye and waved goodbye to all the little ones. They were as sad to see us leave, as I was to go.
I will always remember this day with love and gratitude. Having been a part of these people’s lives, even for a short time has really been an honour.
It was equally as emotional leaving the Street kids project, where again we experienced the same fond farewell. This time, Amma came outside with the silver tray, freshly prepared red powder and another silky scarf, which she then tied around us.
I couldn’t help feeling really overwhelmed and so sad that this will be the last time I see everyone. The boys all came over for a kiss and hug and Amma squeezed me so tightly.
Ashmita, Amma’s daughter presented me with a lovely handmade card, which I will cherish forever. Feeling really emotional, we left Amma’s house to be escorted to the nearby taxi rank by two of the older boys. They haggled over the fare for us for the last time. We hugged them once again and they told us how sad they were that we were leaving and that we should come back to stay for either a year or ten years! We all laughed and said we’d try our best to come back to see them all one day.
Overwhelmed, we left Bindhu’s house for dinner at Maya restaurant in Lakeside. This was the same place we had our very first meal on arrival! This was Edwina’s idea and it was just a wonderful way to end the placement as we had begun it. Very poignant!
I left after eating, as I wanted to do some shopping and then went back to Bindhu’s to pack.
I’ve now cleared all my stuff away and the room I’ve stayed in for two weeks looks just as it did when I first arrived.