March 14

Yesterday we had a great time in Kandy, which is several hours east of here. We went to an elephant orphanage, fun to see elephants bathing in the river. Many had been hurt, shot by hunters. missing a leg, blind, not too pretty. They make pachyderm paper at the orphanage. It is recycled elephant dung. ick

Then to the spice farm, some massages, and oils. I bought some saffron, curry and some other items. We also went to a very old Buddhist temple.

Got back to the farm late and dinner was waiting for us.

The next day we started to work. Went to a little preschool north of the village and I learned to be a wound care nurse. The wounds weren't deep, just dirty, lots of flies. The room we worked in was small.

Some of the children are in school, a uniform, shoes and backpack is required. Someone in our group is going to sponsor that for many children. it costs about $10 each. In the afternoon the med team and teachers went to a school that was housing 275 people that totally lost their homes. We handed out stickers and played balls with the kids. Many families lived in one room. There were lots of flies. They did the best they could for what they had to work with. 3/4 of the people were at work. Some government workers were there handing out a monthly allotment to tsunami victims. 5000 rupees $50 month. The workers make $1-3 a day.

We went back to the village and played with children. A circle game counting to ten. Then to the ocean, across the tracks, there is rubble and total destruction. The government says no building allowed, too close to the water. The people stay and live where they can, lean-to's. The children are beautiful. The ocean is beautiful. I look out at the Indian ocean and I think how can something so beautiful be so very harsh?

A child approaches me and gives me a shell another girl with long dark hair shows me her hair is messy I give her my hair tie. She is happy. It doesn't take much.

We have translators with us most of the time when we are working with the people. A few words.
Thoos tiy= thank you
Nama= name
Gama= home