Today started with a slightly different breakfast as our eggs had more pepper in than usual. Ms J stood up in the morning briefing only to tell us that no one had any idea what the day would entail, other than at some point we would perform at the farewell show. Ms Dutton reassured us that we just had to “go with the flow” as she has been telling us the entire trip as this appears to be a part of Indian culture.
The rest of the morning was very quiet as the children had gone to school to practise their performances. So we were left to finish off washing, take naps and practise our acts for the show.
After lunch we were told several start times for the show from 4-7pm, this caused much confusion as the girls still required the long procedure of putting their saris on. The children returned from school and so we tried our best to use up some of the recreational activities we still had with us. This mainly involved modelling balloons which were quickly made into swords, hats, giraffes and slightly misshapen dogs. As normal, the children were extremely enthusiastic and all wanted a balloon.
Soon into the balloon making, a group of Indian ladies walked over and we were told it was time to get changed. The girls went to their rooms and the ladies came in to very tightly secure the saris. After about an hour of fitting all 10 saris, the girls, Ms J and Miss D were all ready. Meanwhile the boys were chilling until about 5 minutes before we were due as their fancy attire wasn’t nearly as complicated.
We all gathered outside to take what seemed hundreds of photos with several poses. We anticipated the evening show to be in the children’s dining room; however, as the weather was nice, plans were changed and in the next minute red carpets, banners and lights were carried outside to be set up for what looked to be a magnificent night. We still had time before the show started so we went and to take pictures with the children who were also in their smart wear.
The show started at about seven and the first couple of performances were traditional dances from the children which was followed by some fantastic clog dancing by Miss D. Over the course of the night we saw many more dances by the children including Lunghi dancing, duets and some more contemporary dances. Our acts consisted of a contemporary dance by Sophie, Alice and Syd, a poem about our time at Amala written and performed by Alice, the “cup song” by Zak, Laura E, Laura S, Syd, Alice, Tim, Mairi, Jack and Matt and finally a group dance to Uptown Funk. At the end of the show we were all invited on the stage with the children to dance some freestyle.
At the end of the show Raja finished with a speech and asked us to join him on stage. We were all presented with a memorial plate which had been engraved. There was one special prize which was awarded to Issi for being especially helpful to the children. We all thanked the children, staff and Raja’s family for an amazing night.
Finally at 9 o’clock we said good night to the children and gathered in the dining room to have our last supper at the home. We were spoiled with beer, Sprite, ice cream and a traditional Burri which was fried in front of us beautifully by Victoria.
Earlier in the evening we had been impressed with Naveen’s (Raja’s son) dancing and so we asked for him to bring his speakers so we could all continue dancing. Instantly the dining room turned into a dance floor as tables were moved and disco lights turned on. Then all of us, including the teachers, danced into the night, bringing out our best moves as the kitchen staff joined in. We danced until we were soaked in sweat, thanks to the heat and energetic dance moves.
The night ended at about 11:00pm when the music stopped and we went to bed preparing ourselves for the emotional day ahead.
Laura E and Matt.