Whoa, so apparently re-integrating into Vancouver life took a little while, especially with the severe jet lag and over-full caseload awaiting me at Kids Physio… and not to mention wanting to catch up with all of my loving friends that I missed during our trip!
So – this post is one I did NOT want to miss. I’m not sure if we can count the number of times that we have experienced over-the-top hospitality from the local people of Koppal. Their warmth, generosity, and eagerness to have us visit their homes made us feel so special.
We surely can’t count how many cups of chai we had during our home visits, nor can we estimate the number of Parle-G biscuits we consumed. Even the poorest of families insisted on snacks and bevvies each time we came to see their children.
Since the start of our trip we’ve had multiple shining examples of just how kind-hearted people can be. We went to Hampanna’s house for dinner the first weekend we arrived and feasted on his wife Siroja’s delectable cooking:
During the last week we were also invited to several of the Samuha staff’s houses for meals, including Muttana and Kahmallah’s quaint and gorgeous pad for home-cooked food. It really felt like we were part of their family:
The girls and I chatted, and we wanted to do something special for everyone to show them how much we appreciated everything they had done for us, so I talked to the cooks and basically said “if you could cook anything special that you wanted with an unlimited budget, what would you make?”. Our one request was that they had loads of vegetables and curd for everyone (apparently curd is a commodity, and they normally don’t serve it to the staff).
The three kitchen staff Ruksana, Laxshmi, and Devapa made an INCREDIBLE meal of special dishes that are rarely made at Samuha due to finances. This included vegetable pulao (rice dish), curd rice, papadam, fresh veggies, a fresh lentil and greens salad, and fruit. Everyone was so happy and commented about how nutritious this meal was!
Here’s the kicker: To feed 50 people on the Samuha campus, stuffed to the brim, it cost us 40 CANADIAN DOLLARS. TOTAL. Divided by 6, that was about $6.50 each. If we had known, I think we would have offered to sponsor a veggie-filled meal weekly!
We cannot thank the staff of Samuha enough for welcoming and accommodating us, and making this such a memorable trip. THANK YOU!