Thursday, March 8, 2012

Happy Holi!

Hi folks! Some of you know that I am back at Sri Ram Ashram. Baba Hari Dass's ashram outside of Haridwar, in which they have built an orphanage, clinic and school that offers education to 500 village children. I spent 2 months here 6 years ago and am thrilled to be reunited with the kids and staff again! The children have amazing memories and identified me by saying, "you made us a backgammon game and you love frisbee!!!" Some of the youth have married and have left for college and work, but lucky for me all but one have returned for the holiday Holi.

Those of you that followed my previous trip may remember that Holi is a festive holiday of colors. The day and night before Holi is called Holika or little Holi where people dress up and paint their faces and prepare for Holi by soaking each other with water.  At night they go around for candy similar to Halloween and build a big bonfire, tie ribbons on it to represent things that they want to be rid of and then they circle around the fire and watch the ribons burn. Then the dance party begins. The actual day of Holi people douse each other with water and colors. It can be really intense for foreigners in the "outside" world, as you make a perfect target and people tend to get rough especially if they are intoxicated. So most foreigners learn quick to witness the action from afar.

Here at the orphanage a camera is like being in a safe zone... so it is a perfect way to "play!" Still, it is good to find an even safer place when the big boys come out to play!

Sometimes you get lucky and get a one in a million shot like this! Adorable!

Another beauty!

This is the youngest child at Sri Ram right now.

This little guy had just arrived as a baby when I was here last.

Pujah in the hat has married since my last visit.

Preparing for action!

Enticing the visitors to come out of their safe zone! Color in the main building is not allowed!

Trying to get psyched up for the attack!

A perfect canvas!

This is Rashmi, an amazing woman originally from CA who runs this place. Of course, always a favored target... and she is a great sport about it! 

This is Dyadar and Joyce. Friends of mine from Oregon that I originally met in India 6 years ago. He was the Naturopathic doctor that helped me during my crazy ear infection with intense vertigo.

They have 2 small pools here. It's a great way to start to get the color off! 

This is Vijay Raj. He has become a cross fit trainer. I took a class with him with a few other folks yesterday and can barely squat and get up from an Indian toilet today!

And this was applied gently! 


  1. OMG... how delicious was that!?! I wanna jump right in and get dirty with the rest of the girls ... sista!!

  2. Thanks for all the great pics Jen! We love getting your updates.