Location: Dharamsala

Knowing that Claudia can’t seem to sleep past 7:00 am, we had to rely on Becca’s acting abilities to keep her busy as we prepared her *cough*cough* surprise. We glued – not taped, but glued – Happy Birthday Claudia to her door and broke out into Happy Birthday as she opened it. After breakfast this morning, most of our mutual learning partners decided to take us to St. Johns Church. We sat along the wall as we tutored until the rain came. For lunch, our MLPs dropped us off at Mc Llos. Not only was the ginger lemon honey tea amazing but also the momos. We polished off our delicious meals with Claudia’s chocolate birthday cake. Because Claudia blew out all of her candles in one go, she won’t have any boyfriends this year…We headed to TCV for our last class this week.

All of us decided to begin with geography. The kids scurried to find countries on the map and would then make the widest smiles possible up at us. Admittedly we did go a little – okay really – crazy today: we sang One Direction, danced to Gangnam Style, and let the kids attack us. Back at the monastery, we watched an in-depth documentary about Tibet called Cry of the Snow Lion. Although fatigue was a constant pest, we all enjoyed the movie and the perspectives that the new information gives us. We ate dinner at the monastery, then headed to the forum. Even though the topic for the forum was immigration, it evolved into self-immolation, the attempted Tibetan genocide by China, and the definition of true happiness. Oliver decided that if Qataris were to invade Belgium and replace Belgian waffles with hummus that he wouldn’t mind as long as he were happy. We closed what originally seemed like it would be a short forum after an hour and a half. Talking about issues relating to the situation in Tibet was enlightening for us all. As always our day was littered with sarcasm and laughter.