Rachel back to talk about day 7! We decided to work this Sunday, so our day started off pretty early. We rode to the Kalol area where we met up with Salmaben and Rajeshbhai who were gracious enough to use their day off to accompany us to a few communities we may conduct our needs assessment in.
Our first visit was to Taravda, which is pretty close to Dolatpura. We interviewed several individuals from all different parts of the community.
Everyone was quite curious about our presence and very willing to talk to us about their daily lives and different aspects of their community, including what schools are nearby, what typical professions are, and what happens at different times of the year. One of the women that staffs the anganwadi of Taravda acted as guide to us four BLIP women and Salmaben while Kabir and Rajeshbhai were shown around by her neighbor. We gathered a lot of information and concluded our visit near the anganwadi.
The second community we visited is called Barola. The May 2014 trip went to this community as well, but focused their information-gathering around water. We interviewed a few individuals from one faliya, but hope to return to get more perspectives about their community.
We tried to return to Alindra to conduct more interviews, but the same wedding that prevented us from doing so on Saturday was still ongoing, so we decided to return another day. Salmaben gave us some mangos and biscuits to revive us from the heat before she and Rajeshbhai returned to Baroda.
We went to the office to complete some tasks that required wifi, which included purchasing plane tickets to get to Mumbai next weekend for a University of Michigan alumni event and site-seeing. The process took quite a while due to our cards being considered international, but we were able to get everyone on a flight eventually.
After getting lunch and finishing up our work, we made the drive back to Baroda, with most of us napping on the way. We spent the rest of the afternoon playing cards, first Euchre (which I lost miserably two rounds in a row) and then we taught one another how to play poker – Texas Hold ‘Em style. Being the law-abiding (and broke) college students that we are, we were creative and used Band-Aids in place of money for our wagering.
After a break for dinner and phone calls home, we concluded the evening with a de-brief of the communities we visited that day and planning for the next. We made sure everyone’s Band-Aids were returned to them so that we’re all prepared for any scratches or scrapes that may happen in the field and then turned in for the night.