So training is officially over and our first event starts next week. This week is going to be very busy because we are going to start getting ready for the event. Everyone keeps asking what I'll be doing during events. I will be getting materials ready for the programme, getting and greeting participants when they get here in Pune (whether that is here at the centre, the train station, or the airport, and at any time of the day), showing participants around the centre and Pune, and helping with activities during the programme. I'm sure that there is way more things that I will be helping with and I'll fill you in on more of that later.
Before we ended training we participated in the Indian afternoon that participants partake in during their programme. We got mehendi patterns on our hands, practiced rangoli, which is sand drawings, and sari tying. It was a lot of fun that ended with the Maharashtrian dinner, which is a typical dinner in this state of India. Julie and I had a lot of fun, even though the other 2 girls were sick. I'm really looking forward to sharing that night with participants.
CL, the programme manager, Julie, and me in our saris.
My and Julie's mehendi.
We have had 2 days off since we are done with training and Julie and I have been exploring the city. We went to Koregaon Park, Pune Central, which is a department store, and we even went to the movie theater (although we didn't get to go to the movie since it was 3 hours later than when the paper said that it was going to be!). I have discovered another coffee place called Cafe Coffee Day, which is also very good and they have one closer to me than Barista does, at least that I have found so far. I've had a lot of fun exploring the city and tomorrow I will be going on a little adventure of my own. We have all been assigned a place to go and explore by ourselves. I was supposed to go today but it was way too hot and I didn't feel like going out in the heat. I'll keep you posted on that adventure after I go.
Well, everyone is placing their bets as to when the monsoon will start. It has been so hot here for the last few days and there hasn't been any rain at all. The first few days that I got here, it would rain every late afternoon or evening just enough to break the heat, and it hasn't even done that. Everyone has been guessing that it will start sometime at the the end of this week. My guess is Wednesday.
Last night we got to go out and go meet with an Indian family for dinner. It was a lot of fun. We all got dressed up and went. We went down the road to the Jahveri family's home. They were all really nice. They showed us around their house and showed us all of the great gifts that they have received over the years from groups that have come to dinner. They were very accommodating and invited us back any time we need to get away from the centre.
Vivi, me, and Julie in our punjabi suits.
I hope that you have been enjoying the pictures. I'll post again once the monsoon starts, or in a few days, whichever comes first!