Sunday, 26 February 2012

First time @ SEVA cafe .....

SEVA cafe.  A very unique concept and first of a kind in my city.  You can read more on SEVA cafe on  Its a cafe where people offer their services as volunteers.  Those who really enjoy serving to the others without expectations of any returns.  My friend Palak had few weeks back volunteered here and he shared his experience with me.  So yesterday while attending a poetry reciting program at SEVA cafe, Palak and I decided to volunteer on Sunday.  i.e. today.  One has to register themselves in advance to get a place to volunteer.  Luckily we both got the place ;) and we reached there at around 18:30 hours.  

We met the regular volunteers and saw how the place was getting ready.  The menu I suppose is pre-decided and cooked in the late afternoon.  Its a very very simple menu with 3 - 4 dishes prepared.  Palak and me wrote the menu on the black board and helped the other guys in arranging few stuff here and there.  At around 19:00 hours everyone stood in a circle holding each other's hands and we silently prayed to the almighty.  Then Udaybhai a regular volunteer here told everyone to introduce themselves and also tell their favorite food.  This was fun.  

Then the volunteers were assigned their duties.  I and David from Australia being volunteering for the first time were assigned the job of cleaning the dishes.  Palak had told me that whosoever comes to volunteer here for the first time is mostly assigned the work of cleaning the dishes. ;) So I was kind knowing what work I had to do.  Along with us one another regular volunteer who always takes up dish washing was in the lead.  And slowly people started pouring in and the work began.  Initially it was not much of a work as used dishes came in from a table at intervals of 10 or 15 minutes.  I was mostly rinsing the dishes and David was drying them up.  But soon there were piles of dishes coming up and we had to speed up.  Soon the serving guy came up and told u, 'Please can you do the glasses first, we are running short of them'.  And now we really had to speed up and keep cleaning the vessels constantly.  It was not that easy as I thought. The level of the water sink was low and for a somewhat tall guy like me, I had to bend my back and keep washing the dishes.  That was not an easy part.  At some point you really feel the pain and would like to stretch.  So just to relax my back a bit I used to take up the dry vessels and keep them in their places.  I was glad finally all the dishes were done. 

It was now time for all the volunteers to have meal together and the food was delicious.  We finished up with the remaining dishes after we had our meal and soon it was time to leave.  I said good bye to all and told them I'll surely come once again.  All in all a nice experience and seems like I will end up volunteering there again too.  :)  

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