A Big Leap

I have always been one to play it safe. Maybe too safe, I’ve come to realize. After some thrilling smaller ventures away from my familiar life, I’m ready to take a big leap. Follow along on my volunteer journey to India.

“Center of the universe” March 19, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 6:04 am

My dad sent me this article today with a note that said “Amy, see… you’re at the center of the universe!”

I knew that a lot was going on here and I’ve been immersed in the Tibetan situation simply by my proximity to it. It’s bizarre to think that I’m living in the middle of world news, that the sights and sounds of the protests I experience in Dharamsala are relevant not only to my Indian experience but to the world arena.

Yesterday I was sitting on my bed, writing postcards when I thought I heard the roar of a crowd. It had been so quiet and my New York brain is not used to quiet, so I thought perhaps it was SO silent that I was hearing things. I went outside the front door and the roar became louder, and I could make out some chanting. My friend Josie came back from the market and yelled for us to get out on the balcony. We looked out and there was a stream of people flowing down the hillside. Just a part of my afternoon spent at home.

And then, from the article: “No sooner had he finished speaking that protesters outside the gate of his compound torched a Chinese flag, shouting “Hu Jintao Murdabad,” which in Hindi is literally “death to Hu Jintao,” the Chinese president. Two hours later, they burned more Chinese flags. Earlier, monks chanted prayers and walked in thick columns through the hills. Gory photographs were pasted across town, of Tibetans allegedly shot and killed by Chinese forces.”

Josie was out buying pasta sauce and Nutella and was handed a poster of these photographs. I just can’t grasp the magnitude of the idea that the quiet mountain town I’m staying in is being followed by the eyes of the world!  Surreal.


6 Responses to ““Center of the universe””

  1. Linda Says:

    Hi Amy,

    Thank you for your note. I’m not supposed to be drivign as yet but snuck out yesterday and was caught by none other than Erin. I was at a little mall in Canton and she called and quickly realized I wasn’t at home.I tried to distract her but was caught nonetheless.
    It looks so beautiful where you are. What views! Will you be going to another place as well or is this your last? There is nothing like beautiful mountains to renew your soul. What are the kids like? Is it tough to have their attention to teach? I so love hearing what you are doing!
    I trust you are safe given the poilitical situation?

  2. Bob Dressel Says:

    Hello Amy: Grandma and I are behind with our comments on your blog. We were traveling for two weeks and have been recovering since. You certainly have a birds eye view of what most of us have been reading about.

    Keep up the good work.



  3. Dina and the boys Says:

    Hi Amy,
    Sorry we were behind too, we were in Florida briefly to visit my in-laws. Your new place is beautiful! Here are some other ideas for activities, if you need it? For the older children, try “mirror” games…place pairs of children facing each other, and have them take turns initiating movements that their partner must copy. Another idea good with all ages, if you can find enough materials: pretend play cooking, or caretaking (dolls or children pretend to be sick and need help, use bandages and other items to help them feel well)…finally, do you have access to old magazines, can you do collage pictures using flour paste for glue?
    Good luck…

  4. Jill Says:

    Hi Amy, I’ve been behind too so I am now catching up on your travels – sounds like you are quite busy!! Another idea for a children’s activity – any kind of matching game where you turn the cards over and they have to find the matching pairs (you can draw pictures of matching animals and play – fun for all ages). Also, making puppets (out of socks and whatever string or materials you can find.) Hope that helps.


  5. Linda Says:

    Hi Amy,

    As i’m doing some cooking for Easter I am wondering what you are planning for a celebration? Is it celebrated ?

    I spoke with your Dad last night and he said how very proud he was of you as am I. How is your new placement as compared with the last?

    What are you experiencing with the political situation? I know it continues to get front page press here.

    Thinking of you and sending you loving thoughts.


  6. Kristen Says:

    Hi my dear!

    How are you feeling by now? You poor dear. But your blog is WONDERFUL! I could eat those children up, for one thing, and your scenery! I love your flat. You are doing such a wonderful thing there for those kids.

    I hope you’re recovering for those last two weeks! Now: Alyssa sent me a sublime hint that you might be coming through London? Please stay with us! Just let us know your plans, but we’d be in heaven to have you here with us!

    love, Kristen

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