In less than one week's time I'll be back in the UK. I can't wait to see J and C, my grown-up children. And the rest of my family and friends of course! I fly in late on 3rd April, and fly out again on 23rd. I am sure the time will go much too quickly.
Yesterday I spent some time in Trivandrum getting some small things to bring home. One of the teachers had agreed to help me. I've mentioned her before - she's a minute woman who's very good with the SISP children. She has two daughters. The older one, is applying for the army and her mother was very proud that she'd got an invitation to attend the entrance exam. Her other daughter is 15 and is severely disabled. Her husband is retired and has a "haemoglobin problem" which must cost money, and it will cost something astronomical to get her daughter into the army. Rs.25,000 I think, or about £350, a fantastic amount for her. Mum tells me that money is tight in her family and I could see that. She turned up wearing no shoes, as usual. And it transpired that she was carrying only just enough money for the bus home, and she had come to help ME. I almost forced her to have an orange juice with me, and I noticed how far away she sat - customs dictating how a married woman should behave! I bought her a kilo of black grapes and paid for her tickets but it felt woefully insufficient. In her position I imagine that it looked as if I was flashing my money around. She helped me find and select some scarves for which I was very grateful.