Taj Mahal Day was our last day of sightseeing and then we were off to my home for the next 7 weeks, Jaigaon (jay-gahn). Jaigaon is a city in the eastern part of India, probably so far east that you didn’t even realize it’s still in India. It’s right on the border with Bhutan and is very close to a bunch of other countries, so even though it’s not a huge city, it has a lot of diversity.
Our journey from Delhi to Jaigaon consisted of a one hour car ride from our hotel to the airport, a two hour flight from Delhi to Bagdogra, and a 4ish hour car ride from Bagdogra to Jaigaon. I was a little nervous because why wouldn’t I be? I was going to meet my temporary family and see my new home, and I had no idea what to expect. The moment I stepped out of the car, I was put at ease. Pastor Daniel gave a belly laugh and said, “ha! She could be Indian!” He later amended his statement and said that I could definitely be Nepali. If it means I’m going to be able to blend in, then I’m happy for it. Sticking out everywhere you go gets old VERY quickly. It’s even worth the awkwardness of constantly having to tell people that you only speak English when they start talking to you in a different language, assuming you speak it.
They showed us to our rooms, and if I still had any doubts about if I would be okay here, they were gone when I saw my room and waaay gone after dinner. I’m feel like I’m living in a palace. I have my own room. I have TWO beds, my own bathroom with running water and a water heater, a mini-fridge, my own wifi router, a TV, an air conditioning unit. And then they told me that if I need anything else, they’ll do what they can to get it for me… what more could I possibly need? Even this is way above and beyond my needs. There’s also a great view from the roof, plus there’s a swing set up there. Yes, a swing set ON THE ROOF.
We had a little time to get organized before dinner because dinnertime here is usually around 8PM aka bedtime. If that’s the thing about being here that gives me the most trouble though, I’m doing pretty well.
The hospitality culture here is overwhelming. They made so much food for us for dinner, and we weren’t allowed to do anything to help. I definitely felt welcomed! I was glad that Andrew was there too because if all of that was just for me, I would have been even more overwhelmed. Hopefully I can convince them to let me help out with things in the future. Two months is a long time to take someone in, and I don’t want to be a burden.
I’m feeling good about this though. I can see myself getting to the point where I feel comfortable here. I have my adoptive parents, Pastor Daniel and Ruth, and my adoptive brother and sisters, Jayesh, Myra, Prisha, and Anika. Jayesh is 14, and the girls are 12, 9, and 6. My first time having younger siblings!
Tomorrow we’re going to drive around to see the bible school that Pastor Daniel started and some of the city so that I can get my bearings.