A diwali well spent...

"Good boy, last bite kha lo chalo", sangi said as she fed the kid. As the kid finished his last bite, she looked at me and heaved a sigh of relief. No, she was not the kid's mom...neither was I. The kid was a part of an orphanage (did not have the right word) named Shanti Daan.

 Shanti Daan is situated in (almost) the outskirts of Mumbai. It provides shelter to kids and old people who are mentally and physically challenged. It was Sangi's idea to visit them on Diwali.

This is what we did there:
1. Feeding the kids = not that easy: We were given a plate that had a pudding made of tea and biscuits. We were asked to feed the kids. While some kids ate quickly, some did not even know that they had to swallow it. For example, I kept feeding the kid thinking he will eat, but he was just not swallowing it. The pudding was dripping out of his mouth. I did not know what to do, the volunteer came and helped me feed the guy. He had to literally move the boy's chin to help him swallow it. I had tears in my eyes.

2. Interacting with kids = full on fun: After a quick walk around the building, we went to the main hall to play with kids. We were playing catch catch with them, but they did not seem to show any enthusiasm. Only 2 boys- Rakesh and x (will call the other boy x as we could not get his name) were playing with us. Suddenly a sweet girl Gunjan joined us and tadaaaaaa we had 2 more friends- navin and pravin. It was pure fun. A lesson that we learnt was treat these kids the way you treat the other kids...they reciprocate well. No need to talk in syrupy language. 

3. The candle making room = awestruck reactions: After spending an hour with the kids, we went to the room where people were making candles. What we saw made us open our mouth and purse out of admiration. They had made beautiful candles with correct colour combinations. We simply loved the house that they made of wax.We immediately purchased candles for our near and dear ones. Needless to say, they all loved it. A lesson learnt: Everyone is talented, you have to discover it.

We came out happily. We knew we spent our Diwali fruitfully. We are not trying to boast that we had done something good. Nopes that is not our intention. Our intention is to tell you that:

Whenever u feel your life is miserable or that you lack comforts or freedom in life- then spare a thought...there are millions who live a worse life than you. As one volunteer told us: At least we have our parents to support us, these kids have none!