Today we departed from our home-stay in Koshi with full, heavy hearts. The past two weeks have been filled with the beauty and challenges that come when fully immersed in families: morning work in the mustard fields, hand-washing laundry with aamas, watching goats being birthed, cooking dinner for extended family, helping siblings with homework, drinking chiya with aunties, waking in the night with stuffy heads, chasing ghosts from the house, and so on and so on.
Going into our home-stay time students expressed fears about how to communicate and how to be helpful in their homes. Just as we held apprehensions, so did our families. They shared with us: will the students like our food? Are they comfortable enough? How can we really make them feel a part of the family.
Our departure celebration was a testament to how we bridged the gap between guest and family. Tears were shed, songs were sung, and aamas and didis and babas from our homestays and our neighbors blessed us with tika. While we look forward to the next phase of our time here in Nepal, we feel immense gratitude towards those who helped shape our first few weeks here and reminded us about humility, joy, and community.