Week Muru

I went to the Bannerghatta National Park yesterday. There were lions and tigers and bears, oh my! (sorry couldn’t resist). There were also elephants. I absolutely love elephants, so that was definitely the highlight of my trip. I went with three other volunteers. We navigated the buses and managed not to get too lost. The national park was pretty cool. There was a safari, and a zoo, and a butterfly garden. I have to admit that the constant staring is kind of getting to me. I felt like I was the main attraction. There were rare animals roaming within a few feet, but people preferred to look at me. Most of the time I can ignore it, but yesterday it really got to me. I was glad to return to the shelter and see the kids.

I only have one week left and the thought of leaving makes me tear up. I wish I could bring everyone home with me, especially Malika. She us only 8 and hugs me constantly. This week she fell and badly hurt her eye–it was swollen shut. I went with her and some of the older girls to the hospital and I have been taking care of her for the last three days. I worry that the other girls won’t wash their hands thoroughly enough so I take care of applying the ointment, despite blood making me nauseous. I just adore her. She is one of those people you meet in life and never forget.

I have also really bonded with one of the boys at the shelter, Raju. He is only 6 and speaks very little english, but he loves to yell “Madi” from across the room. I play with him (which mostly involves me running in circles and flying him around like superman) and try to work on his English. He mostly just repeats everything I say. I’m not sure how successful I am, but he sure is cute!

The attached picture is Raju asleep on my lap, apparently the book i choose was not up to par!

 

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About Madeline Stagner

Madeline is a sophomore who was recently accepted into the Elementary Education program and will be pursing a major in Language Arts. After graduation, Madeline is interested in teaching in the classroom for several years and eventually pursuing a career in education policy.

3 thoughts on “Week Muru

  1. I love the line that you didn’t get “too” lost. That is definitely the spirit to have in traveling in those types of situations. A little lost can be exciting, adventurous, eye-opening, and genuine. A lot lost can get a bit trickier. It’s great you got to see the elephants! There are so many cool animals on this planet, but I think elephants and giraffes are two of the most incredible just because there really isn’t anything else out there like them. Like, trunks? That’s cool.
    It has to be tough to be leaving so soon. That is always a difficult time. But it’s great that you have been able to create such a bond with those kids in such a short period of time. They will definitely have a lot of great stories in the years to come.
    -Dan

  2. Madi – I’m so glad you got to see elephants! Did it bring you back to your childhood? Leaving will certainly be difficult, but you will always have the memories and as an added bonus modern technology will allow you to stay in touch. Perhaps someday you will return!

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