On Monday I was able to visit the Banishanta brothels. All the girls at the Alingon home were born here, expect one. Rosie (who started Alingon) does a feeding program for the babies here sometimes, where they give formula and snacks for the youngest children. This is how the home started. I saw many moms I met last summer when they visited the home. They don’t speak much english but I could tell them their daughters were well and happy. It was a strange feeling to be there. It’s like an island, we had to take a boat and climb onto a bridge to get there. They seemed happy we were there and wanted to show me their homes. I wanted so badly to sit with them and hear their stories. The language barrier is so frustrating. Hopefully I’ll have a tutor soon to learn some bangla. It was all the more apparent to me how vital the Alingon home is for these young girls. Without it, many of them would be at Banishanta working or somewhere else and living in a really horrible place. Here’s a picture from the river of the brothels.
We went to a park near by a jungle where they have crocodiles and monkeys and close to where the bangla tigers live. Almost once a week someone gets killed by one! Usually fisherman who are deep in the forest. Was I a little nervous? Of course. My local friends assured me we weren’t THAT close to them. As I was taking pictures of the crocodile I realized people were taking more pictures of me! They love Americans here and are fascinated with my light skin. One man even handed me his daughter to take a picture with and wanted me to shake her hand in it. Funny I know. It’s definitely a little strange but at least their friendly. It could be worse.