Thursday, November 14, 2013

Around The World With Stops Mostly In Beijing, Shanghai, China and Chennai, India- Quick Stop in Kuala Lampur, Chennai, India, Pathway Orphanage, The Shore Temples

Chennai, India

Our flight got in to Kuala Lampur, Malaysia, too late to catch our connecting flight to Chennai. We were there for that evening and the next morning but it wasn't quite enough time to go see the Petronas Twin Towers because the airport was too far away. We did stay in great hotel though and hiked through the jungle a little.

We missed our connection in Kuala Lampur and had to stay the night

We stayed at the Sama Sama Express at the airport

The view out our window

They had a superb breakfast buffet that was lots of different ethnic foods

It had beautiful gardens and pool

There wasn't much time to do anything the next day but hike around in the jungle by the hotel

Taking off on Malasia Airlines. I wanted to take a picture of the stewardesses dressed up so feminine in their floral dress uniforms but didn't

Leaving Kuala Lampur- too bad we couldn't get a view of the Petronis Towers

Flying in to Chennai

We stayed at the Taj-Connemara Hotel in Chennai. It was an old palace used by the British and it was lovely. The rooms were huge with tall ceilings.

Our back door went right out onto the pool

All our hotels on this trip included fabulous buffet breakfasts

I was extremely fascinated when we were out driving. Most people are terrified of driving in India because it's China times 10, but I think that actually makes them more aware and therefore, better drivers

This was across the street from our first stop which was the Pathway Chennai orphanage for the disabled

We visited each classroom and were warmly greeted

The kids were amazing

They aren't all kids as you can see and classes were by ability not age

Chandra Prassad who is by default, the mother to all these children

There seemed so happy and well taken care of

Divya is mostly blind and deaf. She pulled out of a trash dump by Prassad. She has Cerebral Palsy and other health issues. She is getting her physical therapy for the day

Prassad who started the orphanage nearly 30 years ago

This beautiful lady was their lawyer if I remember correctly

The facility is in the poorest part of Chennai and they run a free medical service with a doctor for the residents of the area

Prassad keeps these three sketches that Anna did while she was there in his office. They are of Judge Sheffield who had been their greatest benefactor for years. President Gordon B. Hinckley of the LDS church and Prassad himself

After school the kids who want to can do bead work and other crafts to earn money for themselves

He was excited to meet me

This is dorms. They each have their own bed and locker

They do their laundry on the roof

Views from the roof

Some of the bead work they have done

This young man has a neurological disorder I was told but he still can do the intricate bead work.

A commercial oven was donated to them and the kitchen puts out over 500 loaves of bread and pastries every day that they sell to bakeries. It is 100% run by the disabled. Even the finances

Some more of their crafts

They were working on these nativity sets when we were there

They are building a railway over the city but they say it won't be done for a long time

All the women were dressed so beautifully. Even the poorest

Later in the day we drove out to the Pathway orphanage farm and school

We were greeted with leis by the smallest, cutest, little girls

Here they have classes for the kids who are not disabled. Including both facilities, they feed about 600 children every day

This is where Anna stayed and the kids remembered her. She taught them art and math and just loved them

The kids even learn English from a young age

I wanted to adopt a couple of them right then and there, they were so sweet!

Some of the older kids test into the top 10% of India's best educated

Prassad said there aren't any discipline problems

They seemed very happy

There are six main buildings. Dorms for boys, dorms for girls, the school, cafeteria and there is also building for some more disabled here also

They had a devotional for us. They sang "Redeemer of Israel" for us. The kids themselves conducted the meeting and they asked us to say a few words, then they had a program where the little kids danced for us. It was truly one of the highlights of my life

They have (dignitaries is what they called us) people plant a plant in remembrance of our visit

The girls dorms

They have homes for workers who run the farm and a medical staff

This girl was a special friend of Anna's

They had a wood working building that the disabled work at here. They have made their own desks, beds, tables etc. Now they make them to sell and get a salary. It's a truly remarkable place 

Random shots in Chennai

One of the days we hired a driver to take us to the sights. We went out to the Shore Temple

The beach right there was beautiful

There were actually 7 different Temple areas but we didn't make it to all of them

A family wanted me to take a picture with their little daughter. She was beautiful

It was so hot! and we were there for the nice season

They sell these hand carved elephants to tourists and show you where the guys are working to make them. Then you see them all over Chennai. It was kind of funny

We still bought some

Another Shore Temple area

I couldn't resist taking this picture of a nice family getting their picture taken

This was one cool rock

Random shots from the car

We stopped for lunch at a nice resort on the beach

We had a nice seafood lunch

Then we went to see a cathedral in Chennai

It's the Santhome Catheral in Chennai

Then we went to see a Hindu Temple in Chennai called Taj Coromandel

It was a fascinating place

Every street was so alive and vibrant

The beach was interesting. Kind of dirty and not a lot of people there

I think it was mostly fishermen there

I loved how the ladies sat on the backs of the motorcycles or scooters

I wish I had shopped when we first got there because the clothes were so comfortable

A whole outfit was only about $20. We bought stuff for the kids and wise men costumes for David and Rick

I spent quite a bit of time in the pool

And then Chandra bought me a beautiful outfit right before they took us to the airport

I loved every minute we spent there and I want to back. After all, I haven't seen the Taj Mahal yet!