The Paul’s – Staying with family in southern India

Photographing on a 26,467 mile journey through India, Nepal, Bali, Singapore, and Thailand.

After over a week together it was very hard to say goodbye to Sathish and his sweet wife, Sowmya. Knowing that I would soon be in the home of Binu and Princy Paul & family made the transition a little easier. I’m so grateful to Princy’s father for driving two hours each way through the winding roads of Ooty to pick me up and take me to their home in Coimbatore.

I met the sweet Paul family in the US. The Pauls were at the beginning of their seven year stay in the US for Binu to accomplish his doctorate degree in theology. Dr. Binu Paul now teaches at Kerala Baptist Bible College and Seminary here in India. Read more about my time at the seminary in 2015.

It was so sweet to be greeted by “baby” Christina as she ran with outstretched arms and said, “I love you Unkie Ronnie.” How can it have been eight years since she was born? I still remember celebrating her birth in the US, holding her in my arms only moments after being born. Read here for more stories from my blog on baby Christina’s birth. 

It’s been two years since enjoying our Sunday after-church ritual, taking her hand and walking the hallways at church, looking for an imaginary dog and having tea parties. 

Now, seeing eight-year-old Christina ride the bus to school and meet her school teacher seems a bit surreal. In no time we picked up where we left off in the US, playing hide and go seek and flipping her and little brother Benjamin into the air on my famous “du duh duh ride” (there are no words to describe it) that’s why I carry a camera.

The last couple of days I’ve loved visiting the forests and rivers here in India. Not too far away from Kochi, under the Malayattoor Forest Division, lies the beautiful Mahogany Thottam. Originally known as Mulankuzhy, Mahogany Thottam, as the name suggests, is a forest of huge, black Mahogany trees and tall wild jack trees, including the oldest one that dates back to 1820.

It was so fun to wade in the water with Binu and Princy, tiny fish nibbling at our toes. While I love taking portraits of my Indian friends, I think my favorites today were of the cutest little monkey families with two newborns. The experience was breathtaking.

I am so grateful to be here, in India, spending a week with the Paul Family. These images document our last few days together in southern India.

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Ellie Everett
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