Updated: Nov 2
I've been at Hope House for four weeks now, and I'd say that, the routine has finally set in. Our daily life is what I want to describe in the following:
Magdalena and I work six days a week, approximately eight hours a day. Our day usually starts around 7 in the morning so that at 7:30am we can join the girls at breakfast. At this point I have the utmost respect for the girls, as they always get up at 5am to go for a walk with Ruby, pray, and fulfill their duties. I attended this “morning walk” once and, honestly: never again. That's the reason why Magdalena and I sometimes set a timer for 6:30am to go for a walk, which is still quite early, I think.
At approximately 8am, the girls will be picked up to drive to school. So, now it is time for me to go next door to the adoption agency and work there from 8am to 12am. I will feed the babies, play with them, lay them to sleep or just keeping an eye on them ;). At this point, I want to say that we do not replace any staff member, but only try to help and support them in their work. And although sometimes it is very exhausting to be surrounded by little humans that cannot express what they are missing, I got to know them quite good in those past weeks. That is why I can now tell more often what I can do for them. Not only did I get to know the different babies better, but also I learned some skills on how to deal with them. Again and again, it surprises me how quickly babies develop and acquire new skills. At 12PM, Magdalena's shift starts at the adoption agency, and I have a break.
Around 1 pm we both go to lunch and eat with the staff and the children, who are not going yet or not going any more to school. While Magdalena works at the adoption agency until approximately 4:30pm, I will be productive by washing my clothes, write a Blog post (like this one), my weekly report and plan some new projects to do with the girls. Sometimes it also happens that I am not that productive ;) by reading a book, laying in the sun and even sleep. We also switch the working shifts, so that Magdalena works in the morning, and I do in the afternoon.
At 5pm starts our other task- to spend time with the older girls that just came back from school. From now on, we have about one hour till the sun sets. This time we want to spend outside with them, also to do something physically like playing badminton, Hide and seek or volleyball. After watching the most beautiful sunsets, we go inside and play some more games like for example. “Carrom” (an Indian board game) or “Uno”. To practice their English, we also think of games like “Hangman”, “Tabu” or “what am I”.
At 7pm is prayer time for half an hour. Even though I can not understand a thing that they are saying, I like to sit with them and just listen. After that, it is dinner time, and we all sit together, eat and talk. While some girls have to do now their chores, Magdalena and I read with the other girls' English books to practice their pronunciation.
Around 9pm, it is time to say “Nalla Thoonge” = “good night” to the girls, and we go to our room. Due to the time shift, this is often the only time when our families in Germany and Austria can talk to us on the phone.
I must say that these days here are filled and due to the fact that we also work on Saturday, we appreciate the Sundays more than ever:).