No sleep for me

My plans of going to sleep early are always foiled. Last night I had grand plans to get to sleep before 10. Why I didn’t get to sleep is a good story though, and was well worth the late night. Franklin, the director and founder of As Green As It Gets, the NGO I volunteered with in Guatemala, put me in touch with a girl who’s headed down to Guatemala some time soon. It was great speaking with someone about something I’m so passionate about. I really miss AGAIG, its mission, power, impact, and people. I think it was my favorite organization with which I worked. Anyway, it turns out that the woman who I spoke with is from India. We got to exchange some ideas about here as well, which was really nice. I spoke for over an hour about AGAIG and then we spent another half hour talking about India and what I’m doing here. Like everyone else she offered her help if I need anything. The offer always makes me feel good. After our conversation, at almost 11:30, I was about to sign off, and my sister came on. We got to talk on Skype via her cell phone, which advanced our technological communications.
This morning I had to wake up at 5am because we had a meeting in Mumbai with the rest of the organization. Everyone from both offices attended the meeting. It’s always interesting waking up before everyone else, when it’s still dark out, before the day begins. At first it can have an eerie feel to it, but then it’s kind of cool to see everything calm, undisturbed, after everyone has left, and before everyone comes back. It’s still pretty pitch black at 5:45. Even after I was on the bus, it stayed dark for quite some time. This time we rented a whole mini bus for everyone in the office. The meeting was long, but interesting. I don’t really want to get into it all, but it had to do with aligning the organization using the Logic Model. It was nice to know that your opinion matters, that you’re included in the organizational strategy.
I had to cancel my capoeira class for this week because we weren’t getting back until almost 9pm. It’s a long day to travel back and forth to Mumbai. It would be like going back and forth to Boston in one day. On the way back I sat next to one of my friends. It’s been a while since I spoke with someone about good music. We exchanged music, him in Hindi and another Indian language (he doesn’t speak the language either, but the music is just good – Indian Ocean Music) and I in English, Portuguese, and Spanish. I miss talking about music, and became like a little kid singing along in the back seat while translating some of my favorite songs.
After I was dropped off, I was walking back and was stopped by the kids in my society. The younger ones were out so I stopped to play with them for a few minutes. The youngest ones, Divia and Irsha are just too cute to say no to. Somehow I got invited inside Irsha’s house and her mom now wants me to teach her English. Her father came down to speak with me as well (he’s almost fluent in English and Irsha goes to an English medium school, so she is also fluent). Not only did I sit there and speak with them about what I’m doing here, but I ate dinner with them (at 10:30pm) and then got a tour of Irsha’s room, her “garden” and the rest of her house. Irsha’s in 4th grade, which should make her about 9 years old. She’s very mature for a 9 year old. It was nice talking with her parents and was very sweet of them to give me food. I need to learn how to say, “I’m going home, maybe some other time,” though. I wanted to get to sleep early. They invited me out for a weekend trip to the caves when they go next time. It was really nice of them.
I also wanted to speak about the posters all over Pune, which advertise for 1/2/3BHKs in new buildings and societies. They’re everywhere! It’s like the construction, everyone knows that things are changing, and changing fast. I would love to write more but I’ll have to get back to it next time because my eyes are closing as I write. Tomorrow will be another long day – I’ll start my morning at a center at 8am, and will push off to Mumbai in the late afternoon. I really hope I get a spot on the reserve section so I can pass out for a few hours.

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