I can’t believe I’m flying back tomorrow. I’ve gotten used to the rhythm of life here. Lots of things have happened since my last post. Here’s a brief summary-
1. I had a terrible chest infection. I was down with a bad cough and fever for a good week and a half. I couldn’t really focus or work, but I did try taking lots of pictures of the clinic. I rested for a couple days in bed after realizing that walking around with a fever of 104 degrees wasn’t the best thing to do.
2. I received extra funding from Brandeis-India Initiative Fellowship to do a photo exhibition on ‘Children of Bhopal’ at Brandeis! This is something I am incredibly excited about. I am currently looking for a Photo Editor who can work with me on this (due credits will be given) so please let your editor friends know about this! I was really moved by Alex Masi’s photographs of Bhopal, and I plan to compile all the photographs and publish a photobook by the end of next year if I can secure funding.
3. Internet bailed out on us for a while at the clinic, and I found myself staying at the clinic some times and staying near Satyu’s house (to use his wifi) at other times.
4. I said goodbye to Rashi, Melanie and Jamie- three great volunteers at Sambhavna that I had really great conversations with. I also met Anastasia and Nina, two volunteers from the UK and had a nice time at the Indira Gandhi Museum of Mankind with them.
5. I flew to Jharkhand for a week. While I was there, I helped revamp Ekjut’s website. I created a demo site on wix and explained it to the web designer so that he could change the current look into the one I designed. Took some lovely photographs there as well.
6. I celebrated India’s Independence Day with the kids at Chingari. They staged wonderful plays!
7. I accompanied Vikas Tripathi, a campaigner with International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal (ICJB), in distributing pamphlets/petition to the survivors in the lead up to a massive rally on August 30th demanding their chief
minister to follow his words. The petition demands that the Chief Minister put the money where his mouth is and ensure that victims of the disaster each receive at least Rs. 5 lakhs from the state government.
8. I’m finishing the video and changing the final pictures on the brochure.
Bhopal in the future, I’d suggest you keep to yourself when you have to, as your behavior can lead to multiple interpretations. Even as someone from Nepal, a place that has strong cultural ties with India, I faced situations where I thought I was being misunderstood and my actions being misinterpreted. Be clear, talk to people and don’t hesitate to ask for help. Also, I’ve
always believed that ‘passion makes perfect’, so whatever area of expertise you choose to develop, give it your all – or find something else you’re willing to give it your all.