We all know that the first time we try or experience something new is the toughest. Ever since I was a child I would hear my mother saying this, whenever I tried my hand at something new (and failed). Before commencing this journey, which I knew would throw up new challenges and experiences at me, I never anticipated that within the first month, I would come across a myriad of feelings and episodes.
It’s 4:30 PM and I am sitting alone in my room (which I have locked from inside) as I write this blog. I am currently staying in the guest house of my host organisation. As my roommate (and co-fellow) has gone to visit her parents, I have been staying alone in this huge (2BHK) flat for the past 2 nights. This is a ‘first time’ for me. To put things into perspective, I would like to tell you that I have probably never slept alone in my own room (having a twin sister ensured I was always followed around), let alone sleeping alone in a house, in a new town!
As I wasn’t feeling up to the mark, I spent the entire weekend in my room, watching a movie marathon and cooked my own meals; another ‘first time’ for me. Travelling alone by inter-state buses, talking to strangers and telling them about what the fellowship is all about and why am I doing it was also all very new for me.
But the most special incident out of all these new ones was the first time I (along with a co-fellow and staff from the host organisation) went to a school in a village near Ajmer to talk to the field staff. The school staff was very welcoming but what made me feel invited was the excitement that I could see in the kids. For some reason, they were delighted to see us ‘didis’. After getting introductions from all the seven kids, I asked them if they would like to tell us a story or recite a poem, which they happily did with animated expressions.
This was also the first time I got so much regard from people who were complete strangers. Another interesting addition to this list of ‘first times’ was greeting people with a warm namaste rather than a formal handshake.
During this first month away from home, I stumbled upon a multitude of experiences and ‘first times’ which made me realise that although the first time we try something new is the toughest, it is also the most memorable and we learn the most …