After leaving Jaipur, we headed to Bikaner where, after a quick side-trip to visit the rat temple (ick!),
we checked into the Hotel Harasar Haveli and enjoyed a lovely sunset meal at their rooftop restaurant while watching the locals fly hundreds of kites from their roofs.
We had finally reached another milestone on our trip and were about to accomplish another of the goals we had set for ourselves at the beginning of our trip – we were going to meet our foster child, twelve year old Hansu, and her family in a tiny desert village 75km from Bikaner. Before our trip, I had contacted Plan Canada (formerly Foster Parents Plan) to set up the visit and we had gotten police checks and signed the necessary paperwork before leaving Canada. In actual fact, when you sponsor a child through Plan Canada, you are essentially contributing to an entire community by supporting programs which help to make the community more self-sustainable. You are assigned a child to help to put a face to the project and give you a personal connection. Regardless, we had watched Hansu grow up in pictures for the past four years while Alexa and Simon had grown up hearing stories about Hansu (especially when they wouldn’t eat their vegetables) and we were all excited to meet her. [read on]