Location: Dharamsala

Today in the morning I got to experience Dharamsala’s crazy weather; at 8 a.m. the sun was shining, and I was ready to slather on piles of sunscreen. Thirty minutes later, when I stepped outside my door, the fog was so heavy you could barely see 10 meters in front of you. As we made our way up the stairs the only thought that kept me going was “this is the second to last time I’ll ever do this!” Once we arrived at Common Ground, it truly dawned on me that our time here is almost over and that I have to seize every single moment before I head back home. After our usual hearty breakfast, we went to meet our learning partners. Each pair went to different locations around Dharamsala. My learning partner, Teyang, and I went to a coffee shop to escape the rain. There we shared pictures of our home countries, our families and even compared iPhone apps. It is very interesting how two very opposite cultures, such as Tibetan and Brazilian, with completely different habits, can connect through modern day technology. We also worked on new vocabulary words by giving examples, writing sentences or even drawing pictures. Teyang constantly asks about words such as “violence,” “war,” and “torture,” which to me shows the true Buddhist nature of the Tibetan people. We went to Hotel Tibet for lunch, and we all ordered different plates and shared delicious naan bread. It started raining right when we needed to leave to go to TCV, but most of us were equipped with umbrellas and raincoats. TCV was super fun as usual, and all the groups finalized the performances the kids will do tomorrow. Again, even though our cultures are very different, we still manage to find similarities in music. The kid’s favorite bands range from Justin Bieber to One Direction. We ended the day by heading back to Common Ground and meeting another group of teenage kids who are trekking around northern India. We all had dinner together and then watched a documentary called ‘Sun Behind the Clouds’ which was very thorough at showing two different perspectives to the Tibetan situation. All in all, today was a good day, but our time in Dharamsala is ending which makes me very sad but excited to visit our final destinations.