13 July 2007

Buddha, Mobs, and Orphans ~ Dani Beekman

July 13, 9:14 am. For the sake of time, I am just going to write what I put in my journal last nite, I hope it makes sense to you. We went to a huge Buddhist temple that they are building, its huge and they've been working on it for not even a year. There were a lot of younger Indian men and I had a camera. They showed us the bed of nails trick that they do. I got it on video. There was an old man that followed me. He wanted me to have a picture of myself in front of the temple. I showed him how to work my camera and a whole bunch of other men gathered around and were attempting to "help" he kept pushing them away. It was funny. He took 2 pictures.

What an amazing day!!!! Buddhist temple, mob, orphanage. On our way to the orphanage we stopped to pick up some bible covers at a shop. They werent ready and rick forgot the tshirts he made for the sem students. We all got out and Lee stepped in water buffalo poop and decided he needed to scrape it off. He took off his sandal was standing on 1 foot scraping the poop from his shoe. As if we aren't weird enough, people started to notice the strange white people and they would stare. I felt like a little fish in a bowl. They point, laugh, talk in their language. We just stand there and say America. Lee started to talk to a group of college boys. That group quickly grew. In a matter of minutes we had cars stopped and a very very large crowd. They started asking Lee for autographs and of course he complied. Laura, Alison and I were taking picture of 4 little kids. They like to see their pictures.

We made it to the orphanage and it was gorgeous!!!!!! The whole place was clean!! They decorated it all up with Xmas lights, it was amazing. There was a stage and thats where we eventually sat. We sat down on chairs and they gave us each a cold pop. A man started singing. Some of the orphans were poking their little heads out the door. They are all so beautiful. The children performed 2 action songs and a girl in a crazy beautiful costume did a traditional dance for us. Kate started winking at one of the little girls. She caught on quick and winked back. Pretty soon we had em all going. During the service they would make eye contact with you and wink. Precious. They called us up on stage and gave us each a garland. VS Benjamin blessed the men, his wife blessed the women. After the service the orphans came to us. We touched their hands. Danielle started giving them stickers on their hands. It was crazy. They were pushing and shoving to get to us and all of their little hands were stretched out. All you could see were little hands and big beautiful eyes. This little baby girl somehow got to the front of the scene and was being smooshed. So i put her on my lap. They all kept saying sista, sista. One little girl would pinch your cheek and then put her fingers to her lips. I took the little girl up on the stage away from the mob. I didnt want to let her go. Pastor Ohlmann told me to take her with me. I would too.

We had a huge meal served to us. Jyothi's brother served us. Talk about humbling. We are here to help them and they serve us. They are so welcoming and so thankful. Amazing! The hardest part was leaving. They came swarming out to you and grabbed you. Sista sista, bye bye, sista, thank you. They came to the window of the car and put their little hands in. I didnt want to leave. I would ride in the planes and the bus again just to see those kids for 10 minutes. I wish I had more time with them. Absolutely the most amazing thing ever!!!!!