Our first week in Patan is drawing to a close and with it comes a mixture of excitement and exhaustion. We have found ourselves torn between wanting to explore and spend time with home-stay families and one another, and recognizing the importance of allowing space to sit in the courtyard with watercolors and capture the scenes around us.
Students have now been in their ISP’s for a few days, spending afternoons practicing the tabla, pounding metal into rings, sewing kurtas, drawing sketches, and cooking chicken curry. While not in ISP’s, we have gone on tours of the temples of Patan and beyond. On Friday students awoke to a note on the Program House door challenging them to find the instructors across the city, following clues. They arrived merely hours later, their savvy navigational skills and use of resources getting them to the final destination sooner than expected. This allowed for more time to drink chiya and sit in Swayambhunath Temple (The Monkey Temple).
As we go into week two of our urban home-stays we look forward to conversations about social justice and gender equality. We will have movie nights and early morning poetry sessions. Students will continue to rotate cooking breakfast for the breakfast. We will stretch ourselves into each day on the Program House roof with yoga and breathing postures. Here, together, all is well.